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Interview Questions Medical Affairs Candidates Can Ask

Prepare Questions for the Interview

To help you prepare for an interview, we’ve compiled a list of interview questions Medical Affairs candidates can ask hiring managers and senior executives. By asking questions, you’ll demonstrate a strong interest in a position and the answers received may help you to better position yourself as the right candidate for the job. In addition to having questions prepared, you should also have a thorough knowledge of the life sciences company and its products; know your audience; and, know how to communicate that you’re an ideal fit for the position.

Questions All Candidates Can Ask Hiring Managers

  • (Ask early in the interview so that you can frame how you’re the ideal candidate for the position.) How would you describe the ideal candidate for this position?
  • What attracted you to [insert name of company]?
  • If there was one thing you could change at [insert name of company], what would it be?
  • What can you tell me about the Medical Affairs team and its members?
  • Can you describe opportunities for advancement?
    • What internal development programs are available to me?
  • (Ask at the end of an interview.) What is the next step in the candidate selection process?
  • Tell me about the culture here.
  • What is your management style?

Questions Medical Science Liaisons Candidates Can Ask Hiring Managers

  • How do you measure a Medical Science Liaison’s (MSLs) success?
  • What are currently the top 3 priorities of this role?
  • What do the first ninety days in this role look like?
  • Are Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) academic, community-based, or primary care physicians (PCPs)?
    • What qualifies as a quality KOL interaction?
    • Do I get to develop my own territory or are KOL relationships already established?
  • Do you provide in-house training and how long is the training period?
    • After training, is certification required?
  • How closely will I be working with the Commercial team?
  • How are conferences, trade shows, and congresses managed?
  • Are there opportunities to take on special projects?
  • How do you manage compliance?
  • Will I be working with clinical trial sites?
    • How do you manage patient accrual for clinical trials?
    • Will I participate in patient recruitment efforts?
    • Will we interact with Contract Research Organizations (CROs)?
  • Are MSLs involved in speaker bureau training?
  • Is Research & Development prioritized?
  • What is the product(s) pipeline strategy?
  • Is the company investigating other therapeutic areas?

Questions Medical Director Candidates Can Ask Hiring Managers

In addition to all the questions above, candidates for the position of Medical Director can ask:

  • What Medical Affairs area will I help develop?
    • Communications
    • Information
    • Publication
    • Strategy
    • Clinical Development
  • Will I be developing training content?
    • Will I be responsible for designing disease state education?
  • Will I be helping to expand the Medical Affairs team?
  • What is the culture of the team I will be inheriting?
  • Will I be managing vendor relationships?

Questions All Candidates Can Ask Executive Leadership

  • What do you believe is the value of Medical Affairs?
  • How do you measure the success of the organization?
  • What goals have you set for Medical Affairs this year?
  • What areas have you identified for improvement?
  • Are there plans for additional R&D or acquiring new products?
  • Are there new therapeutic areas the company would like to explore?
  • What sets this company apart from its competitors?
  • How would you describe the culture of the organization?
  • How would you describe the relationship and level of collaboration Medical Affairs have with other departments within the company?

 Questions to Avoid

Do you have any concerns about my candidacy for this position? A better way to frame this type of question is: Do you feel my expertise and experience are a match for this position?

Here’s another article you may find helpful: The Medical Science Liaison Presentation.