Head R&D Strategic Priorities

Lake County, Illinois
Apr 15, 2021
Science/R&D, Research
Required Education
Masters Degree/MBA
Position Type
Full time
About AbbVie
AbbVie’s mission is to discover and deliver innovative medicines that solve serious health issues today and address the medical challenges of tomorrow. We strive to have a remarkable impact on people’s lives across several key therapeutic areas: immunology, oncology, neuroscience, eye care, virology, women’s health and gastroenterology, in addition to products and services across its Allergan Aesthetics portfolio. For more information about AbbVie, please visit us at Follow @abbvie on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.


This position is responsible for driving Transformational change through R&D Strategic Initiatives worldwide. Objective is to drive continuous improvement in operational excellence with a focus on developing the appropriate future capabilities to help AbbVie achieve a recognized leadership position in the industry.        


•Provide leadership and direction to the R&D Strategic Priorities function within R&D Performance Solutions

•Develop and maintain a rolling 3-5 year strategic improvement plan including, but not limited to, productivity, efficiency, compliance, training, cost saving, time saving and culture programs/projects.

•Identify strategic and operational business improvements and innovations to enable efficient and effective delivery of drug development programs. Enable the continuous identification and assessment of innovative improvement ideas and opportunities from within the company through Lean Six Sigma capabilities or PMP experiences and from innovations externally.

•Establish a robust framework of processes and tools to effectively implement projects

•Build a diverse team of business consultants that can deliver solutions utilizing multiple tools & capabilities such as Lean Six Sigma, Program/Project Management, Innovation principles, Design Thinking, Change Management. Facilitation/Workshop Design.

•Ensure that all projects have KPIs to demonstrate effectiveness of implementation.

•Communicate and champion the vision, mission and achievements of R&D Strategic Priorities Function.  Serve as a positive and visible role model for change. Actively engages Senior Leaders to build sponsorship of key initiatives

•Develops industry-wide professional network, including representation of AbbVie at industry groups and conferences

•Develops and implements the staffing model appropriate to the organizations mission, including hiring, training, coaching, and career development for the organization.




•Advanced Degree (MBA, MS, PhD, or MD) preferred with at least 15 years in the pharmaceutical industry in a variety of roles associated with drug development (research and development, commercial, project management, operations, clinical operations management experience) in the healthcare, Pharmaceutical R&D and/or CRO industry.

•Have a broad understanding of the bigger picture and of how development works across all functions including drug supply, CMC, Regulatory, Data Management/Stats, Phase I, PK/PD, Drug Analysis, and commercial in order to have insight into how opportunities might manifest themselves.

•Have proven ability to challenge the status quo and regularly think of ways to do things differently together with having strong fixer and problem solving skills.

•Have prior experience working in the international environment, strong influencing and persuasion skills and the ability to be a respected collaborator.

•Be able to inspire others across the organization to exhibit the same “must have” behaviors.

•Have experience implementing technology into clinical trials and/or clinical organizations.

•Be a strategist as well as an implementer


Key Stakeholders:

Development Senior and Extended Leadership teams, Development Operations Leadership Team, Information Research Leadership, and Data Sciences Leadership.

Significant Work Activities
Continuous sitting for prolonged periods (more than 2 consecutive hours in an 8 hour day)
Yes, 5 % of the Time
Job Type
Job Level Code
Equal Employment Opportunity
At AbbVie, we value bringing together individuals from diverse backgrounds to develop new and innovative solutions for patients. As an equal opportunity employer we do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex (including pregnancy), physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, protected veteran status, or any other legally protected characteristic.