Working at BioMarin Pharmaceutical | Glassdoor

BioMarin Pharmaceutical Overview

San Rafael, CA
1001 to 5000 employees
1997
Company - Public (BMRN)
Biotech & Pharmaceuticals
$1 to $2 billion (USD) per year
BioMarin is a global pharmaceutical company focused on developing first-in-class and best-in-class therapeutics that provide meaningful advances to patients with serious and life-threatening rare genetic diseases. We remain steadfast to our mission—to bring new ... Read more

Company Updates

  • Our cutting-edge research makes us unique while our goal to help the rare disease community brings us together. Watch to learn more about our research approach.

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  • Did you know BioMarin built one of the first gene therapy manufacturing facilities in the world? Located in Novato, California, this site is home to our research pioneers.

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BioMarin Pharmaceutical – Why Work For Us?


Rare Opportunities, Personal Impact

BioMarin is a world leader in developing and commercializing innovative biopharmaceuticals for rare diseases driven by genetic causes

At BioMarin, we focus on developing first-in-class and best-in-class therapeutics that provide meaningful advances to patients who live with serious and life-threatening rare genetic diseases. BioMarin remains steadfast to its original mission—to bring new treatments to market that will make a big impact on small patient populations. These patient populations are mostly children, suffering from diseases so rare, that the entire patient population can number as few as 1,000 people worldwide. These conditions are often inherited, difficult to diagnose, progressively debilitating, have few, if any, treatment options, and are usually ignored.

Time is critical to patients with rare diseases, and we strive to quickly develop important therapies for them. The efficiency and speed of our research, development, manufacturing, and commercial efforts is at the heart of our ability to urgently deliver therapies. Our track record of developing and commercializing new treatments has been significantly faster than the industry average and is ingrained in our culture. CenterWatch, a leading source for global clinical trial information, has named it one of the fastest drug developers in the industry. BioMarin was also ranked tenth on Forbes list of innovative companies in 2015.

As a biopharmaceutical company, our success stems from our focus on science and the hope our therapies can bring to patients. We are world leaders in metabolic disease innovation with multiple products commercialized and a growing pipeline of product candidates to address unmet medical needs. We continue to fuel our R&D engine by looking for opportunities that align with our strengths and competencies. And we relentlessly pursue exciting, early-stage science that has the potential to change the course of disease.

A constant in BioMarin’s culture is how patients continue to drive us. The passion and dedication that our employees bring to work each day is a testament to the inspiration our patients provide, and the knowledge of the impact we can make in their lives.


PROMISING FUTURES.

What makes working here unique? At BioMarin, we feel the intense tie between the work we do and the life-changing results it delivers. Our focus on rare disease gives us the rare opportunity to truly impact lives.

As employees, we’re here because we want to be here. We enjoy our work — and each other. Our people are smart. Unassuming. Collaborative. Curious. Interesting. We share a passion for shared accomplishment — across teams and across borders — and are committed to our people, our purpose, and most of all, our patients. This common ground elevates the impact each of us is able to make every single day.

Our appetite for science drives us. Our team members motivate us. And our patients inspire us. Together we’re growing a company unlike any other, because our motivation is unlike any other.

THE BEST WORK OF YOUR LIFE CAN TRULY CHANGE SOMEONE ELSE’S.

At BioMarin, we’re inspired, driven, and empowered by the patients who benefit from our therapies. Continually fueling our R&D engine, we look for opportunities to develop first-in-class and best-in-class therapeutics to make a meaningful impact on the lives of those with rare genetic diseases.

Careers at BioMarin include:

RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT

From research and discovery to post-market clinical development, our R&D engine involves all bench and clinical research and the associated groups that support those endeavors. Our teams work on developing first-in-class and best-in-class therapeutics that provide meaningful advances to patients who live with rare diseases.

TECHNICAL OPERATIONS

Our manufacturing and process development teams manage the production of our therapies for clinical trials and commercial markets. These engineers, technicians, scientists, and support professionals continually provide quality assurance and ensure we meet all regulatory standards. We have manufacturing facilities in Northern California and in Cork, Ireland. Additionally, our supply chain teams procure the goods and services needed to support manufacturing and worldwide distribution.

COMMERCIAL & MARKETING

Be part of the worldwide infrastructure that gets our drugs to underserved patients around the world. Our global sales force solidifies BioMarin’s commercial presence in the United States and Europe and is rapidly growing in other regions, such as South America, EuMEA, and Asia-Pacific.

GENERAL & ADMINISTRATIVE

It takes a village, and at BioMarin, our general and admin teams are the village behind our success. From the IT experts who manage our technology to the human resources professionals who hire the people who make it all possible, these teams support our organization and span all areas of operations.

Meet Megan French, a Senior Process Validation Engineer and BioMarin employee since 2015

What do you enjoy most about working at BioMarin? The scientific approach. At BioMarin, we look at the science behind things and justify what we do from there. It’s unique, and it’s exciting. Our orphan drug status means that our timelines are very short comparatively. It’s also very patient-focused. Management makes a big effort to make sure we, as employees, are aware of our patients’ stories — that we know who we are working for, which is really motivating. There is also a high caliber of people here. We need people with diverse backgrounds — in education and beyond — to address the need for different product aspects.      

Do you see BioMarin as a leader? How so? I would say BioMarin is a leader in innovation. We operate under a different model — we’re not trying to replicate big pharma. We deliver orphan drugs, which means our timeline to market is much faster than at many biopharm companies. This is also a place where, if you have an idea about how something might be done better — there is a forum for your ideas to be heard. We all work together with one goal in mind, and it makes us all really feel like true contributors. We’re working on a lot of new, pioneering technology — things that have never been done before. Gene therapy is exciting and potentially groundbreaking. It takes a lot of courage to be a leader in new technologies, and I think we do it successfully at BioMarin.     

What should candidates know about BioMarin?  BioMarin is at a really great, fantastic stage. It’s big enough that we’re not a startup, but not so big that there isn’t room to have a strong and important impact on our future. The company has more than doubled in the past year, and with tremendous growth comes opportunity.   Beyond that, BioMarin is just a great company to work for, and the work you do is both challenging and fulfilling. I feel that I have a lot of impact on the products I work on, testing, information in submissions, the manufacturing processes themselves. I do not feel that this level of personal influence would be the same at a larger company. It’s very rewarding.  

Mimi Roy, Executive Director in Analytical Chemistry

Learn about Mimi Roy and our Process Science team at BioMarin

After holding several leadership positions within the biopharmaceutical industry, Mimi Roy joined BioMarin in 2015 and currently is the Executive Director of Analytical Chemistry. Mimi received her Ph.D. from Princeton University and completed her post-doctoral fellowship with Peter Schultz, professor and president of The Scripps Research Institute. In her spare time, Mimi enjoys traveling, practicing yoga, and singing.

How did you find BioMarin, and was there a moment when you knew this would be the right fit and can you describe what that moment was like for you?

My BioMarin story began with a connection for whom I really enjoyed working in the past. I started working as a consultant with our head of Process Science--it was an experiment. But very quickly, I knew BioMarin was going to be the right fit for me because of the people, the culture, the innovative and technically challenging work with gene therapy, and above all, working for the underdog. I was attracted to what BioMarin stands for--passionate people willing to learn and grow.

What is the vision for the Analytical Chemical group, and how does that vision fit into overall strategy of BioMarin’s Technical Operations (TOPS)?

Our vision is to break down silos and build a collective, scientific picture of our products (characterization) using modern technologies that inform efficacy and safety. This mirrors the TOPS vision to preserve our start-up spirit while developing capabilities to enable growth. We work with research early on to understand the molecule at a basic level. We run the gamut from early stage analytical development to analytics supporting manufacturing investigations and changes post-commercialization. The tests we develop support development of manufacturing processes upstream and downstream, choice of formulation and release test methods. So, science, collaboration and performance are key in the vision.

Process science will undertake significant hiring in 2019.What business decisions are driving those hiring goals? 

TOPS leaders have pointed out that the cost of not doing development work properly upfront can show up later in the commercial venue with a significant negative impact to the business. We can better guarantee robust processing and testing at the commercial juncture if we invest early in analytical development and standardize, plan and prepare. With ambitious timelines and the need for pressure testing or refinement, increasing resources is one solution to enable performance at the required speed of execution. The idea is to be proactive rather than reactive. Think about that! 

This image leads right into my next question regarding the TOPS organization continued evolution and “performance mastery.”Like a Jedi master—what are the key qualities that an employee in process science should have mastered?

I call it the 4 E’s: “Energy, Ability to Energize others, Technical Edge, Execution.”  This is what I look for in anyone who joins our team. Importantly they have to have Passion, a passion for purpose. When a candidate exhibits these qualities through their resume and phone interview, we have them come in for the on-site interview. After the 4E’s and a P are confirmed in person, it is all about behavior and communication.

BioMarinized—it is a term that came up at an All Hands Meeting by Darragh Breen, a colleague in TOPS-Shanbally, Ireland.When you hear that term, what does it mean for you? 

I can’t specifically speak to what he meant at the All Hands Meeting, but I have heard colleagues here say we will just “BioMarin it.” To me, this means to get the task done utilizing prioritization, consensus building and problem-solving in a fast-paced milieu. You learn to quickly seek empowerment and execute with a passion for the patients’ benefit. 

Once you have been “BioMarined,” what skills does an employee gain from this experience?The candidate will bring their qualities to the team, and what do they receive in exchange? 

It’s like a workout where you go to the gym, do yoga, swim, run, bike and hike on different days of the week—you continue to get stronger in developing a broad set of skills that underline prioritization and problem-solving in a dynamic science-driven environment. You absorb it, you breathe it, you socialize it and you don’t get sent to a corner to work in isolation. You are refining this mixed bag of skills every day.” These skills are extremely valuable: communication, collaboration, fast learning, joint decision making and developing junior colleagues. If you can alleviate stressors on senior management, your results get noticed here. You aren’t lost in a crowd. You learn to collaborate and make a difference. 

You have referred people to BioMarin. Why, and what made you think of that person in particular?Have you hired folks who have been referred?

When hiring, I have stuck to the 4E’s and a P in addition to the technical fit for a given job and a culture/behavior fit. Over time we build layers of connections biased toward our areas of interest. I find that my network sphere is enriched with scientists interested in analytics and biopharma, so it makes sense to utilize these referrals. 

BioMarin Pharmaceutical Reviews

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BioMarin Pharmaceutical Chief Executive Officer Jean-Jacques Bienaimé
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    "Best Kept Secret in Biotech"

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    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Rafael, CA
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    I have been working at BioMarin Pharmaceutical full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I've been here for more than five years, and I love Mondays! I still pinch myself because I get to work in such a positive work environment. I have so much respect for the people here, who are brilliant and humble--a rare combination of traits. It is highly motivating to work for a company that has a clear purpose focused on helping people with rare genetic diseases. It is an exciting time to be at BioMarin while it is growing rapidly and to be a part of cutting edge science.

    Cons

    Fast growth in the company means that sometimes you have to be okay with ambiguity.

    Advice to Management

    Tell me more about what you're thinking.

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BioMarin Pharmaceutical Photos

BioMarin Pharmaceutical photo of: San Rafael Corporate Campus
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BioMarin Pharmaceutical Interviews

Experience

Experience
65%
23%
12%

Getting an Interview

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36%
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18%
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    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. I interviewed at BioMarin Pharmaceutical.

    Interview

    Very smooth. Interview was an hour long. 30 min with hiring manager and 30 min with senior associates. They went over the job description and how I would fit in with the team. I had a good time!

    Interview Questions

    • Know your resume and the job requirements (technical aspects of the job as well) and you will be fine. They asked me the concept behind anion exchange chromatography.   Answer Question
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BioMarin Pharmaceutical Awards & Accolades

  • America's Best Midsize Employers, Forbes, 2018
  • The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies, Forbes Magazine, 2016
  • The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies(10), Forbes, 2015
  • Top 25 Biotech Companies, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN), 2015
  • Most Admired Company, QB3, 2015
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Pledges & Certifications

Veteran Hiring Commitment

Committed to helping America's military veterans find work

Pay Equality Pledge

Committed to paying equitably for equal work & experience

Tech Hiring Commitment

Helping to train, hire and promote more technology workers

Career Advancement Program

Helping employees "upskill" into higher-paying positions

Diversity Commitment

Has programs that support a diverse and inclusive workforce

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