Meet Fanny, International Regulatory Manager at Roche

Tell us a bit about yourself

I started working at Roche in 2010 as a trainee. I joined a two-year programme in Regulatory Affairs tailored for young graduates to get first-hand working experience. After one year in Global Regulatory Affairs followed by a six-month rotation in a global business team, I was offered a permanent position in Global Regulatory Affairs Oncology.

Where did you study?

I completed my PhD in computational biochemistry at the Swiss Institute of Technology Lausanne EPFL and the University of Zurich. My work provided some insight into the repair mechanism of UV-induced DNA lesions that can lead to skin cancer. While completing my PhD, I earned a master’s degree in Intellectual Property at the Swiss Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH).

In which Roche location are you currently working?

I work in Basel at the Hochstrasse Building.

What can you tell us about that location?

The Hochstrasse building is ideally located, just a five-minute walk from Basel’s main train station. Its great location makes for a very convenient commute by public transport.

Why did you decide to join Roche?

I have always been interested in drug development. The first time I had the opportunity to meet people working at Roche was at an ETH Zurich career fair. I was immediately impressed by how passionate these people felt about their job. Roche’s global culture and its solid reputation for delivering highly innovative drugs in oncology convinced me to apply for a position.

What is your current job?

My current role essentially involves liaising between a global development team and the health authorities. Our ultimate goal is to obtain approval for registration of a new drug or a new indication of a marketed drug. In addition, ensuring that we fulfil all our obligations towards the authorities is equally important. There are basically two main areas within my remit that are central to meeting this goal:

First, I need to clearly communicate the health authorities’ expectations to the team to ensure that our clinical trials are properly designed so that we ultimately receive approval for our drugs. Second, I strive to establish a trustful relationship with the regulators based on a constructive and transparent dialogue. Naturally, we have plenty of opportunities to strengthen this relationship, for example by ensuring that the authorities receive high-quality documents in accordance with their expectations or by engaging in face-to-face discussions. In the latter case, the team needs to be extremely well-prepared to explain our studies. For example, when preparing for a meeting with the regulators to discuss our proposal for a clinical trial design or to clarify some of their questions while they review a marketing authorisation application, my role is to guide the team in obtaining meaningful feedback from the authorities and to be ready to answer any questions that they may raise.

What makes it such a great job?

It is great to be able to learn more every day about regulations and regulators’ views. I also see my job as a tremendous opportunity to learn about drug development and to further benefit patients.

Can you pick at least three of the attributes of Roche and explain in detail what they mean to you?

Work/life balance: I am pregnant and our “new arrival” will undoubtedly change my life. It is great to know that my management and the organization in general are very supportive. For example, at the “Family and Career” network based in Roche Basel, employees can openly exchange their experience and share practical tips about juggling work and a family. Another example is the help Roche offers with childcare. In this context, I feel empowered to strike a good balance between a rewarding career and my new adventure as a mother.

Products: The products we are developing are at the cutting edge of innovation. We are constantly improving the standard of care in key medical areas, and this is extremely rewarding.

Respect: People at Roche work in a truly global and multicultural environment. Respect is key and at the heart of every interaction with colleagues.

Please complete the following sentence: Roche is a great place to work because...

...I can constantly develop new skills in a very supportive environment while helping to bring our new drugs to patients.

How would you describe the people working here?

At Roche, people are primarily inspired by science, innovation and benefitting individual patients. People’s interests go beyond their functional area of expertise and team members truly endeavour to understand others’ views and help find the best solution to move forward together.

What would you advise job seekers who want to join us?

Look for a job that matches your skills and interests. Do not hesitate to seize the opportunity to work at Roche – go ahead and apply!

Tags: Switzerland, Career Blog