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Advice for "Research Coordinator" career

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 16-05-2016, 01:30 AM
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Default Advice for "Research Coordinator" career

Hello all!

I'm a Life Science grad with 2nd Lower Honours from NUS, been working in a non-science job for about a year since I've graduated, but I'm considering returning to the science/healthcare industry.

Recently chanced upon a couple of Research Coordinator positions at a couple of local healthcare institutions, hence I have a few questions that I hope the wise community here can help me with:

1) What is the average pay range like for such positions? What about AWS and other bonuses?

2) How much "research" do they conduct? I may be wrong, but I hear that they are mainly the "admin" person in a research team, with most of the research done by the Research Assistants (RAs) and Post-Docs/PhD holders.

3) How is the day-to-day work of a Research Coordinator like? Is it a routine-based job or more dynamic in nature?

4) How are the working cultures at the local healthcare institutions, such as SingHealth, etc

5) Is there a difference between the normal "Research Coordinator" vs "Clinical Research Coordinators"?

6) How is the career progression like for Research Coordinators?

Appreciate the input from everyone! And I hope this thread will benefit people who are looking for similar jobs as well!

Thanks!

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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 16-05-2016, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fauxfire View Post
Hello all!

I'm a Life Science grad with 2nd Lower Honours from NUS, been working in a non-science job for about a year since I've graduated, but I'm considering returning to the science/healthcare industry.

Recently chanced upon a couple of Research Coordinator positions at a couple of local healthcare institutions, hence I have a few questions that I hope the wise community here can help me with:

1) What is the average pay range like for such positions? What about AWS and other bonuses?

2) How much "research" do they conduct? I may be wrong, but I hear that they are mainly the "admin" person in a research team, with most of the research done by the Research Assistants (RAs) and Post-Docs/PhD holders.

3) How is the day-to-day work of a Research Coordinator like? Is it a routine-based job or more dynamic in nature?

4) How are the working cultures at the local healthcare institutions, such as SingHealth, etc

5) Is there a difference between the normal "Research Coordinator" vs "Clinical Research Coordinators"?

6) How is the career progression like for Research Coordinators?

Appreciate the input from everyone! And I hope this thread will benefit people who are looking for similar jobs as well!

Thanks!
I don't think a decent degree holder like yourself should be doing a research co-coordinator job. It is like you said mainly a routine administrative job and naturally the pay and promotion prospects isn't going to be much better either.

Try to at least get a real researcher equivalent job, at least that's an executive level job that has use for what you studied.

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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 30-08-2017, 01:45 PM
Research Coordinator
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Default Speaking from experience as a CRC in the industry

Quote:
Originally Posted by fauxfire View Post
Hello all!

I'm a Life Science grad with 2nd Lower Honours from NUS, been working in a non-science job for about a year since I've graduated, but I'm considering returning to the science/healthcare industry.

Recently chanced upon a couple of Research Coordinator positions at a couple of local healthcare institutions, hence I have a few questions that I hope the wise community here can help me with:

1) What is the average pay range like for such positions? What about AWS and other bonuses?

2) How much "research" do they conduct? I may be wrong, but I hear that they are mainly the "admin" person in a research team, with most of the research done by the Research Assistants (RAs) and Post-Docs/PhD holders.

3) How is the day-to-day work of a Research Coordinator like? Is it a routine-based job or more dynamic in nature?

4) How are the working cultures at the local healthcare institutions, such as SingHealth, etc

5) Is there a difference between the normal "Research Coordinator" vs "Clinical Research Coordinators"?

6) How is the career progression like for Research Coordinators?

Appreciate the input from everyone! And I hope this thread will benefit people who are looking for similar jobs as well!

Thanks!
1) Average pay would depends on this few things:
- Local Grad without relevant work exp (Fresh Grad): 3.1-3.6k (Gross)(Without Allowance)
- Local Grad with min 2 years of clinical (Hospital or clinic) exp: 3.2-3.8k (Gross)
- Overseas or Private Grad w/o work exp (Fresh Grad): 2.9-3.6k
- Overseas or Private Grad w/ min 2 years of clinical (Hosp or clinic) exp: 3.2-3.8k

My personal opinion: TBH, employers don't really gauge which uni you are from, infact being from local uni means you are "expected" to be more expensive to employ, so some of them might prefer to employ overseas or private degree holders since they are cheaper but can deliver the same amount of work and expectations required.
Public sector (Govt): Have mid year per bonus and AWS (Govt got alot of research grant money = Job security)
Private (Nowadays really bad): AWS only if your contract renews by yearly basis (No Job security) since your pay is determined by the sponsor's grant (Research grant)

2) s://.jliedu.com/blog/clinical-research-coordinator-a-better-career-choice-for-nurses/
Some of the few roles: Lab work - Centrifugation and sample aliquoting
Phlebotomy (Draw Blood), IVC/IVM (Intravascular cannulation) for clinicals, the rest are pretty much admin - Useful skills

3) 8-5 Job but very dynamic according to the schedules of your work colleagues: CRA/patients/Doctors/Auditors/Yourself

4) Depends: If you are lucky, minimal work politics (Research sector in singapore is small so you cannot afford to offend anybody anyway, once you are blacklisted, be prepared to do something else outside of research)

5) There is no normal or clinical. They are basically the same thing with different name, sometimes we are called Study Coordinator, Clinical Research Coordinator or even Research Assistant, usually I'll go by the title of RA since it's easier for non-research staff to remember by.

6) Please refer and read
.scri.edu.sg/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/PT-Slides-v2.pdf

However CRC in Singapore is not established yet, so at the moment I would advise for people to stay as a stepping stone to get research certified with a few years of working experience before pursuing for continuing academic studies if you are looking at purely research.

In the end research is about publications and showing off your findings to the public, you would require adequate qualifications and knowledge (Relevant academic skillsets) to do so anyway. Degree is the bridge of the iceberg, you cannot do anything with it in if you're looking for specialised role like being a researcher, scientist and epidemiologist etc

I hope that answer your question, disclaimer: If you want to be rich, don't come into the research field, you need real passion and interest.

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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 30-08-2017, 05:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Research Coordinator View Post
1) Average pay would depends on this few things:
- Local Grad without relevant work exp (Fresh Grad): 3.1-3.6k (Gross)(Without Allowance)
- Local Grad with min 2 years of clinical (Hospital or clinic) exp: 3.2-3.8k (Gross)
- Overseas or Private Grad w/o work exp (Fresh Grad): 2.9-3.6k
- Overseas or Private Grad w/ min 2 years of clinical (Hosp or clinic) exp: 3.2-3.8k
I'm not sure about other places, but I was offered research coordinator for clinical studies by singhealth last year and it's not anywhere close to a/m figures. Mine was a private degree from Australia and I had 1+ years experience in a commercial life science lab and the offer was only 2440.
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 31-08-2017, 10:33 AM
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Default CRC Salary

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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
I'm not sure about other places, but I was offered research coordinator for clinical studies by singhealth last year and it's not anywhere close to a/m figures. Mine was a private degree from Australia and I had 1+ years experience in a commercial life science lab and the offer was only 2440.
Hello friend!

2440 figure for a fresh grad (Degree entry) in the RESEARCH industry is a blatant scam, even my research assistant (Diploma Holder) fare a similar to higher pay.
Remember CRC is on HIGH demand (Due to it's high speciality and clinical skillsets requirements, top it off with high stress), i received multiple replies for interviews previously when I sent my Resume out into the market for this role.
Go for more interviews, make yourself known and marketable, then you're able to negotiate for a above 3k pay, public (Govt sector) pays well, especially at places > Heart Centre, SGH, NUH, etc.

I told my employer that I went for multiple interviews and received job offers already previously.
P.S: If they want you, they have to offer you a higher salary or additional incentives. (You have the advantage, they need you)

I'm not sure where you took your degree from, but mine's from australia too, with affliation and academic reputation belonging to the Group of Eight - s://go8.edu.au/
Top 3% leading academic institutions comparative to the world.

If you are connected to a top class ranking institution, you might be able to use your academic portfolio to negotiate for better offers too.

All the best and good luck for your job hunt in the research industry!
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 31-08-2017, 11:07 AM
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You should not be applying for Research Coordinator position. These are administrative and coordination work which have little to no use of your degree in Life Sciences. You will be overqualified for it. A Research Coordinator is basically a clerk that does paperwork such as IRB applications, advertising for research recruitment, and doing reimbursement. While some of this overlaps with the role of a Research Assistant (RA), typically in a big research organisation, there will be Research Coordinators to handle the administration while the RA does the statistical analyses, run the research, and interpret the data. Therefore, you should be applying for Research Assistant positions.

What you should instead be pondering is the fact that you have no experience in research at all since you have graduated. It will be challenging to argue that the one year of non-research experience would be transferable unless you are working in a similar sector. My advice to you is to try to argue for the transferable skills from the one year of work experience, and also use your research experience from your FYP/Thesis during your degree program. This should differentiate you from fresh degree holders vying for the same position as you.

Remember that you should be applying for a research assistant position. Below is a rough idea of the ranks in research.

Research Coordinator - Administrative position (Diploma holders) $1.8k - $2.5k
Research Assistant - Research and statistical analysis work $2.6k - $3.2k
Research Associate - Graduate position (Masters) $3.5k - $4k +
Research Fellow - Post-doc/PhD $5k onwards

Below is a list of places where you could try applying:
1. Institutions of Higher Education (NUS, NTU - Go to their taleo portal)
2. Research Agencies (AStar etc)
3. Restructured/Private Hospitals/Polyclinics (NUH, SGH, SingHealth, NHG etc)
4. Private biomedical research firms (Go to Biopolis website and look at the tenants)
5. Public Service (AVA, HSA, NEA)

The difference between a clinical researcher and a researcher is that for the former, you need to have clinical experience. You do research related to human subjects and this tends to be medical/pharmaceutical in nature. It is generally quite tough to enter the clinical research realm unless you did research in the biomedical side during your university.

Finally, remember that if you intend to venture into research, you need to be prepared to pursue further education. Otherwise, there are very limited opportunities for growth and promotion. Your pay progression would be capped eventually. Most people do research with the aim of eventually pursuing a PhD and doing their own research, rather than working under someone's.
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  #7 (permalink)  
Old 31-08-2017, 12:28 PM
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Default Research Coordinator/ Clinical Research Coordinator Sumnmary

The above reply provides very good solid advice already so I shall not elaborate or comment on it further.

Coming back to this topic.

Why Research Coordinator?

1. For people who are satisfied with just a degree
2. High family commitment: Good for mothers and family orientated individuals
3. Not academically inclined nor keen for further studies
4. Looking for a stable job in the government sector with no career progression (It's not even established yet), there's a need but it dosen't change a fact that there's no define industry in this area.
5. Looking to be a jack of all trades, master of none. Still exploring and want some exposure (Test Research Industry water)
6. Network with research people and hope DRs will write good testimonials for you when you apply for further studies.

Why Clinical Research Coordinator?

1. It's better then being a Research Coordinator since you not only coordinate administrative Clinical Studies (Attas Clerk).
2. You are involved in both Clinical Trials and Clinical Studies
3. You are involved in the Study Team that is able to run clinical trials together with your profs.
4. Above 3k pay (For Fresh Grads)
5. If you want to work first for 1-2years or so before doing masters to post-doctoral studies, don't waste time working as a CRC.
6. You perform some clinical and laboratory skills.

Cons: High Barrier of Entry because most of them requires min 2years of clinical experience that only Nurses and pharmacists have when they work in the Hospital.
But since nursing and pharmacy is a specialised career why would people still want to dive into a unspecialised role?
So that's the problem why it isn't that attractive for career prospects and progression.

If you are not in the above situation, just follow the advice before my post, study till pHd and conduct your own studies, it's more rewarding to have something of your own rather then working for someone else anyway.
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Old 01-08-2020, 11:33 PM
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If you need help and on your own, you can't manage to do your thesis or any other writing for the university, the best solution is to turn to special companies that offer paper writing services. Personally, they helped me a lot during my university years because I couldn't do everything at a higher level. after I started turning to such a company like https://paperwritingservice.com/ several friends of mine saw that it was quite convenient and they also tried so that there were many of us who did it that way.
Has anyone here tried such companies?
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