Meet Amrita, Bioinformatics Research Leader at Pleasanton, CA
Why did you decide to join Roche?
Roche is a leader in the development and delivery of high quality IVD products. Today, diagnostics based on Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technologies are heavily influencing clinical decision making and are quickly moving towards becoming the standard of care in precision medicine. I hold a Ph.D. in Computer Science with a focus in Bioinformatics and have worked on NGS technologies for several years before Roche. With Roche establishing a business unit dedicated to Sequencing, this was a perfect opportunity to contribute to building products that empower clinicians to make the right decisions for their patients and to make a positive difference to healthcare by advancing science and technology.
My work helps Roche to….
Innovate and deliver high quality NGS-based diagnostics to the market. The field of NGS diagnostics is witnessing unprecedented waves of innovation which, in addition to rapidly advancing the standards of precision medicine, are market disruptive. Delivering high quality diagnostics while not slowing down innovation is a fine balancing act.
My work is multi-disciplinary, and located at the confluence of Bioinformatics Algorithm Development, Software Development and Assay Development. As a team lead for Bioinformatics, it is my responsibility (together with my team) to develop bioinformatics domain expertise for utilization in NGS diagnostics products as well as set up structures and processes for functional excellence within the organization.
How would you describe career development at Roche?
At Roche, learning opportunities are limitless and the sky is the limit when it comes to learning about new domains and extending your skills. There are several programs within the company that support career development in a structured manner
How would you describe the culture and work environment at Roche?
The work environment is fast-paced and encourages innovation. People are valued and encouraged to "own" their contributions. It is a culture driven by a genuine interest in building products that make patients' life better.
What has been your biggest opportunity to date within Roche?
Since I was one of the first Bioinformatics Scientists at Roche Sequencing, every opportunity has brought with it the potential to make a big impact. The opportunity to serve as a Bioinformatics subject matter expert on the development of somatic oncology assays and software has been rewarding -- by enabling contributions in the definition of somatic oncology assay & software products and through opportunities to collaborate cross-functionally to launch these products. The multidisciplinary nature of NGS diagnostics have inspired renewed my appreciation for the complexities underlying product development.
What would you advise job seekers who want to join us?
Roche is a company that lives its objectives through its culture. The products that Roche builds utilize a very wide range of functional areas of expertise and the company supports career development in new directions.