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Working As a Senior Research Associate

  • Getting Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $64,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Research Associate Do

Natural sciences managers supervise the work of scientists, including chemists, physicists, and biologists. They direct activities related to research and development, and coordinate activities such as testing, quality control, and production.

Duties

Natural sciences managers typically do the following:

  • Work with top executives to develop goals and strategies for researchers and developers
  • Budget resources for projects and programs by determining staffing, training, and equipment needs
  • Hire, supervise, and evaluate scientists, technicians, and other staff members
  • Review staff members’ methodology and the accuracy of their research results
  • Ensure that laboratories are stocked with equipment and supplies
  • Monitor the progress of projects, review research performed, and draft operational reports
  • Provide technical assistance to scientists, technicians, and support staff
  • Establish and follow administrative procedures, policies, and standards
  • Communicate project proposals, research findings, and the status of projects to clients and top management

Natural sciences managers direct scientific research activities and direct and coordinate product development projects and production activities. The duties of natural sciences managers vary with the field of science (for example, biology or chemistry) or the industry they work in. Research projects may be aimed at improving manufacturing processes, advancing basic scientific knowledge, or developing new products.

Some natural sciences managers are former scientists and, after becoming managers, may continue to conduct their own research as well as oversee the work of others. These managers are sometimes called working managers and usually have smaller staffs, allowing them to do research in addition to carrying out their administrative duties.

Managers who are responsible for larger staffs may not have time to contribute to research and may spend all their time performing administrative duties.

Laboratory managers need to ensure that laboratories are fully supplied so that scientists can run their tests and experiments. Some specialize in the management of laboratory animals.

During all stages of a project, natural sciences managers coordinate the activities of their unit with those of other units or organizations. They work with higher levels of management; with financial, production, and marketing specialists; and with suppliers of equipment and materials.

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How To Become A Senior Research Associate

Natural sciences managers usually advance to management positions after years of employment as scientists. Natural sciences managers typically have a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, or Ph.D. in a scientific discipline or a related field, such as engineering. Some managers may find it helpful to have an advanced management degree—for example, a Professional Science Master’s (PSM) degree, a Master of Business Administration (MBA), or a Master of Public Administration (MPA).

Education

Natural sciences managers typically begin their careers as scientists; therefore, most have a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, or Ph.D. in a scientific discipline or a closely related field, such as engineering. Scientific and technical knowledge is essential for managers because they must be able to understand the work of their subordinates and provide technical assistance when needed. 

Natural sciences managers who are interested in acquiring postsecondary education in management should be able to find master’s degree or Ph.D. programs in a natural science that incorporate business management courses. A relatively new type of degree, called the Professional Science Master’s (PSM), blends advanced training in a particular science field with business skills, such as communications and program management, and policy. Those interested in acquiring general management skills may pursue a Master of Business Administration (MBA) or a Master of Public Administration (MPA). Some natural sciences managers will have studied psychology or some other management-related field to enter this occupation.

Sciences managers must continually upgrade their knowledge because of the rapid growth of scientific developments.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Natural sciences managers usually advance to management positions after years of employment as scientists. While employed as scientists, they typically are given more responsibility and independence in their work as they gain experience. Eventually, they may lead research teams and have control over the direction and content of projects before being promoted to an administrative position.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although certification is not typically required to become a natural sciences manager, many relevant certifications are available. These certifications range from those related to specific scientific areas of study or practice, such as laboratory animal management, to general management topics, such as project management, and are useful to natural sciences managers regardless of the organization being managed.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Natural sciences managers must be able to communicate clearly to a variety of audiences, such as scientists, policymakers, and the public. Both written and oral communication are important.

Critical-thinking skills. Natural sciences managers must carefully evaluate the work of others. They must determine if their staff’s methods and results are based on sound science.

Interpersonal skills. Natural sciences managers lead research teams and therefore need to work well with others in order to reach common goals. Managers routinely deal with conflict, which they must be able to turn into positive outcomes for their organization.

Leadership skills. Natural sciences managers must be able to organize, direct, and motivate others. They need to identify the strengths and weaknesses of their workers and create an environment in which the workers can succeed.

Problem-solving skills. Natural sciences managers use scientific observation and analysis to find solutions to complex technical questions.

Time-management skills. Natural sciences managers must be able to do multiple administrative, supervisory, and technical tasks while ensuring that projects remain on schedule.

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Average Length of Employment
Senior Scientist 4.9 years
Research Biologist 4.1 years
Research Scientist 3.8 years
Staff Scientist 3.5 years
Research Associate 2.6 years
Research Fellow 2.4 years
Top Careers Before Senior Research Associate
Internship 4.5%
Scientist 3.7%
Chemist 1.8%
Consultant 1.5%
Top Careers After Senior Research Associate
Scientist 14.6%
Consultant 7.2%
Manager 3.4%
Director 2.9%
Chemist 1.9%

Do you work as a Senior Research Associate?

Average Yearly Salary
$64,000
Show Salaries
$44,000
Min 10%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Goldman Sachs
Highest Paying City
San Francisco, CA
Highest Paying State
Nevada
Avg Experience Level
3.8 years
How much does a Senior Research Associate make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Senior Research Associate in the United States is $64,311 per year or $31 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $44,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $92,000.

Real Senior Research Associate Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Research Associate Texas Tech University Lubbock, TX May 16, 2016 $300,000
Senior Quantiative Research Associate Ajo LP Boston, MA Nov 19, 2015 $275,000 -
$375,000
Equity Research SR. Associate Cowen and Company, LLC New York, NY Dec 14, 2015 $175,000
Senior Research Associate Cornell University Ithaca, NY Jul 01, 2015 $160,063
VP, Senior Research Associate Alliancebernstein L.P. New York, NY Aug 31, 2016 $160,000 -
$180,000
Senior Financial Operations Research Associate Earnest Inc. San Francisco, CA Feb 11, 2016 $158,974
Senior Immunology Research Associate Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy San Francisco, CA Jul 20, 2016 $150,000
Senior Immunology Research Associate Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy San Francisco, CA Oct 17, 2016 $150,000
Senior Quantitative Research Associate Ajo Boston, MA May 22, 2015 $150,000 -
$350,000
Senior Research Associate The University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA Mar 15, 2015 $140,000
Senior Associate-Portfolio Research Blackstone NWI Asset Management LLC New York, NY Sep 18, 2015 $140,000
Senior Associate, Research Axioma, Inc. New York, NY Feb 22, 2016 $140,000
Senior Research Associate Fund for The City of New York New York, NY Aug 27, 2015 $74,000
SR. Research Associate Caprion Proteomics USA LLC Menlo Park, CA Jun 24, 2015 $74,000
Senior Research Associate University of Colorado Boulder, CO Jan 04, 2016 $73,833
Senior Research Associate The Henry M. Jackson Foundation Bethesda, MD Jul 22, 2016 $73,542
Research Associate Senior Walt Disney Imagineering Research and Development, Inc. Pittsburgh, PA Jan 09, 2016 $73,500
SR. Research Associate I, Biology Gilead Sciences, Inc. Foster City, CA Feb 09, 2016 $73,479
Senior Research Associate I NGM Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. South San Francisco, CA Aug 08, 2015 $73,300
Senior Research Associate University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OH Oct 05, 2016 $73,045
Senior Research Associate The William Davidson Institute at The University O Ann Arbor, MI Dec 10, 2015 $59,987 -
$62,640
Senior Research Associate Purdue University West Lafayette, IN Jan 01, 2016 $59,904
Research Associate, SR. Duke University Durham, NC Mar 01, 2015 $59,883
Research Associate, SR. Duke University and Medical Center Durham, NC Jan 15, 2015 $59,883
Senior Research Associate Covance Laboratories Inc. Greenfield, IN Dec 28, 2016 $59,675 -
$70,448
Senior Research Associate Emory University Atlanta, GA Oct 13, 2016 $59,595
Research Associate Senior Covance Laboratories Inc. Greenfield, IN Dec 28, 2015 $59,093 -
$68,000
Senior Research Associate Engineer The Ohio State University Columbus, OH Jan 02, 2016 $59,093

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Top Skills for A Senior Research Associate

  1. Lab Equipment
  2. Cell Culture
  3. Analytical Methods
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Maintained lab equipment and supply ordering
  • Designed and executed experiments to optimize media formulations and cell culture conditions to increase productivity.
  • Initiated and undertook a cost analysis of department spending for analytical methods, which determined the funding distribution among projects.
  • Planned and executed protein stability studies to support clinical and commercial drug products and provided a predictive model of formulations.
  • Introduced a novel method for result analysis that utilized an in-house data analysis program, providing increased depth in data generated.

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Top 10 Best States for Senior Research Associates

  1. Massachusetts
  2. Washington
  3. New Jersey
  4. California
  5. Connecticut
  6. District of Columbia
  7. Nevada
  8. Delaware
  9. North Carolina
  10. Alaska
  • (1,799 jobs)
  • (902 jobs)
  • (607 jobs)
  • (3,304 jobs)
  • (162 jobs)
  • (190 jobs)
  • (27 jobs)
  • (41 jobs)
  • (743 jobs)
  • (47 jobs)

Senior Research Associate Resume Examples And Tips

The average resume reviewer spends between 5 to 7 seconds looking at a single resume, which leaves the average job applier with roughly six seconds to make a killer first impression. Thanks to this, a single typo or error on your resume can disqualify you right out of the gate. At Zippia, we went through over 5,168 Senior Research Associate resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Create A Top Notch Senior Research Associate Resume

View Resume Examples

Senior Research Associate Demographics

Gender

Male

45.4%

Female

39.3%

Unknown

15.3%
Ethnicity

White

49.8%

Asian

23.0%

Hispanic or Latino

12.9%

Black or African American

9.5%

Unknown

4.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

25.8%

French

13.3%

Chinese

12.9%

Mandarin

8.0%

Italian

4.9%

German

4.9%

Hindi

4.5%

Russian

4.2%

Japanese

3.8%

Portuguese

3.0%

Cantonese

2.3%

Arabic

2.3%

Korean

1.9%

Armenian

1.5%

Carrier

1.5%

Bengali

1.1%

Hebrew

1.1%

Czech

1.1%

Urdu

1.1%

Swedish

0.8%
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Senior Research Associate Education

Schools

University of California - San Diego

9.2%

University of California - Davis

7.6%

University of California - Berkeley

7.4%

San Diego State University

6.4%

Northeastern University

6.3%

Columbia University

5.3%

New York University

5.0%

Johns Hopkins University

5.0%

University of California - Los Angeles

4.5%

Georgetown University

4.3%

George Washington University

4.1%

Pennsylvania State University

4.1%

University of Texas at Austin

4.1%

University of Washington

4.1%

Boston University

3.9%

North Carolina State University

3.8%

San Jose State University

3.8%

Duke University

3.8%

University of Maryland - College Park

3.7%

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

3.7%
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Majors

Biology

16.6%

Chemistry

15.6%

Biochemistry, Biophysics, Molecular Biology

13.3%

Business

8.4%

Microbiology

5.9%

Finance

5.6%

Pharmacy

3.9%

Biotechnology

3.7%

Psychology

3.1%

Cell Biology And Anatomical Science

3.0%

Economics

2.4%

Public Health

2.3%

Political Science

2.2%

Genetics

2.2%

Medicine

2.2%

Management

2.1%

Law

2.0%

Chemical Engineering

1.9%

Marketing

1.9%

Physics

1.7%
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Degrees

Masters

37.3%

Doctorate

25.1%

Bachelors

25.1%

Other

7.8%

Certificate

2.9%

Associate

1.4%

Diploma

0.3%

License

0.1%
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Top Senior Research Associate Employers

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Updated May 19, 2020