Great article and I agree with your frustration over the "firing yet not hiring" cycle that is ongoing in big companies these days (and apparently now saying they can't find talent). I have to disagree with one comment from one of your sources within the article regarding hiring smart people to train them in new roles. While this would indeed be ideal in this struggling biotech economy, the most important things in finding a long term employee, in addition to skills, are team chemistry and trust. I could envision a situation in which a new employee is put into a role for which s/he claims to have a track record, see how that goes for 1-2 years, then eventually move that employee into a different role. However, the idea of hiring someone who apparently is smart but for a role in which they have no experience would not fly, at least in my opinion. In our company we do move people into different roles if they wish (for example, from a CMC team member into Alliance Management) but only after they have proven themselves in terms of both past/present experience and fit with others in the organization.
Says Luke Timmerman, "I understand that biotech companies are under a lot of pressure to cut costs, and show investors the results of their work. Many of these companies don’t have the luxury of time or resources to do serious workforce development. But firing tens of thousands of people and then claiming a shortage of skilled workers? C’mon."
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