menu iconmenu
science beaker icon

Process Engineer, Pfizer Pharmaceuticals

Mary Dollard

Job title
Process Engineer
Pfizer Pharmaceuticals
Pharmaceutical Industry
14 Years
  1. BEng in Chemical and Process Engineering
Favourite subjects in school
Maths & Chemistry
The best thing about my job
My favourite thing about my job is the hands on part of the job where I go out on plant and investigate problems.

To be a Process Engineer in the Biopharma industry you will need to do the following.You will need to complete Higher Level Maths and two Science subjects for the Leaving Certificate.You will need to complete a Bachelor Engineering degree in Chemical engineering and consider completing a Masters in Engineering as this can be the minimum qualification for graduate entry in some organisations now.Problem solving and communication skills are the two most important skills for a job in engineering. It is also very important that you can work on a team and work independently.

My Main Tasks

- Day to day monitoring of the process by speaking with the Operators who are working with the equipment, by reviewing the engineering drawings, and by analysing trends of data (temperature, pressure, flowrate, speed) that I can get from our         instruments and automation systems.  

-Investigate any issues with the equipment or process and work with the rest of my team to come up with solutions to the problems.

-Make sure that we are always meeting our plant safety and product quality goals.

-Scope out improvements or modifications to equipment and work with the Project Engineering team to ensure that the projects are successfully completed.

-Work with the Maintenance team to ensure equipment is maintained and available.

-Train Operators on any new equipment or modifications to the process.


The pharmaceutical industry is a highly regulated industry as it is most important to make sure that the products are safe for patients. This means that there can be a lot of paperwork to be completed.

Who Influenced Me

I had a great Supervisor when I first started out as a graduate engineer who helped me to make the most of my first few years work experience. He encouraged me to take up assignment positions abroad and to move departments to increase the breadth and depth of my knowledge. This has helped me to gain a great understanding of how industry works and to see where best my skills can be used and what type of role I enjoy the most.

Work/Life Balance

Yes my job ensures I have a great work-life balance, it’s a challenging job with a lot of opportunities to progress.I have in the past had opportunities to work on shift pattern and to complete assignments overseas.There are also great courses offered by my company to ensure I keep gaining new skills and knowledge.

Most Useful Aspects of my Education

Problem solving skills that I gained when doing my chemical engineering degree have been most useful for my job today. I have worked in a lot of production roles and I have learned that you never have all of the information that you might need! Analytical and practical problem solving skills and an understanding of the engineering fundamentals all help to make sure that I can be a useful member of the Production team and come up with solutions to the day to day issues that crop up.

Useful Work Experience

Work experience in any setting is good as it shows an employer that you are responsible, able to interact with people, and able to commit to a job. In particular, try to get some experience in industry during your college years as it makes a graduate CV stand out to an employer and will also help you to decide what area you would like to work in when you finish college. An internship or summer work placement in the Biopharma industry would help to secure a position like mine.

Top Tip!

Do the subjects at school and at college that you enjoy the most and that you have the most aptitude for and it will make your studies a lot easier.