CRA Careers at PPD


Jennifer Nimz is a senior recruiter located in Wilmington, North Carolina, at PPD’s worldwide corporate headquarters. She recruits for a variety of positions, but primarily focuses on helping clinical research associates (CRAs) advance their careers with PPD. If you are interested in discussing a CRA career opportunity with Jennifer, please connect with her on LinkedIn.

Interviewer: What makes PPD an ideal place for CRAs to develop their careers?

Nimz: PPD is an ideal place for CRAs to develop their careers for several key reasons:

  • PPD provides a global CRO environment with the systems, tools and processes to make CRAs more efficient

  • PPD understands the importance of work-life balance and targets only eight to 10 days of onsite visits per month (not including travel)

  • PPD organizes CRAs by geographic area

  • PPD allows work flexibility across therapeutic areas

  • PPD presents ample training and career advancement opportunities

  • PPD gives CRAs airline comfort club memberships, additional paid time off or cash bonuses, based on travel

Interviewer: What career experiences or character traits do you look for when recruiting CRAs?

Nimz: A great candidate is an individual with CRO or pharmaceutical experience. We’re looking for someone who has a willingness to travel, a passion for clinical research and an interest in PPD.

Interviewer: Describe the CRA recruitment process.

Nimz: The CRA recruitment process begins with a phone conversation between the candidate and CRA recruiter. Candidates have the opportunity to learn more about PPD’s compensation, benefits, travel, career development and advancement, and work-life balance. If a candidate feels a CRA opportunity at PPD is a step they would like to take, the recruiter will ask questions to learn more about the candidate’s experience and tell them more about PPD.

Next, a candidate will interview with a CRA manager via phone. The manager asks open-ended questions that allow the candidate to respond with specific examples and details without divulging confidential information.

Should the candidate graduate to the face-to-face round of interviews, additional members of the clinical management team will interview the candidate in a PPD office or virtually via webcam.

After all interviews are complete, if the team wishes to extend an offer to the candidate, the recruiter will contact the individual via phone to discuss next steps.

Interviewer: What is one piece of interview advice you can share with CRA candidates?

Nimz: Our interviewers love being interviewed too! Ask why the interviewer enjoys working for PPD and why they are passionate about clinical research. Inquiring about their experiences may help you to learn about PPD in a way that would not normally come out in the interview process.

Interviewer: What do you personally enjoy the most about working for PPD?

Nimz: I really enjoy seeing candidates find a new position that is a strong fit for them personally and professionally. I also find joy in guiding them through the recruiting process. While we are a big company, it is the personal relationships that make the difference for me!