Frequently Asked Questions

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Frequently Asked Questions

We know you’ve got questions—so we’ve collected some of the most common inquiries that life science professionals ask recruiters and human resource experts. It’s not an exhaustive list, of course, but it will get you started as you’re considering joining the top emerging life science cluster.

How big is Washington state's life science industry?

In Washington state, life science is a multibillion-dollar industry, with over 1,100 life science organizations across the state, including biotechnology, medical device, biomanufacturing and digital health and other companies, as well as dozens of nonprofit research organizations. There is opportunity to work for world-renowned companies — Adaptive Biotechnologies, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Lundbeck Seattle BioPharmaceuticals, and others – in addition to an impressive group of startups, including standouts in cancer immunotherapies, infectious diseases, neurodegenerative disorders, cell therapies and gene editing.

Washington state’s life science industry is experiencing tremendous growth, with Seattle identified as the fastest emerging biocluster in the nation! With over $15.5 billion in equity, debt, M&A and IPO investing since January 2018, Washington’s life science industry is vibrant and poised for additional expansion. We see this growth being led by mission-driven companies, passionate employees, and innovative new partnerships between life science organizations and big tech.

How many life science job openings are there in Washington state?

It’s hard to give an exact number because our members are always looking for top talent to join their growing teams of leaders and innovators, but there are usually several hundred postings at any one time. Check out the Find Jobs page to begin your job search today!

Who are Life Science Washington’s members?

Our membership is comprised of industry leaders and emerging companies from all the major life science sectors, including biotech, pharma, med device, and digital health, with special concentrations of focus in oncology, immunology, neurology, imaging technologies, molecular diagnostics and cell therapies. We count Adaptive Biotechnologies, AGC Biologics, Bristol-Myers Squibb, FUJIFILM SonoSite, Lundbeck Seattle BioPharmaceuticals, NanoString, Omeros Corporation, Sana Biotechnology, and Seattle Genetics, among our hundreds of members.

How does Life Science Washington serve its members?

Life Science Washington connects our members to each other and to funding, talent, partnerships and essential business services. We elevate our industry by promoting policies that strengthen the environment for ground-breaking research and product development that improves and saves lives.

What jobs are Life Science Washington members hiring for?

Our members are looking for talented life science professionals of all kinds, from researchers to quality assurance engineers to project managers and beyond. With job postings from across the state, ranging from entry-level technicians for our fast-growing biomanufacturing sector to PhD and MD scientists, engineers and clinicians to head research and clinical operations for our biotech and med device companies, you’re sure to find the perfect position for you.

What’s it like living in Washington state?

Honestly, it’s amazing! The farm-fresh produce, excellent schools, gorgeous mountains and vibrant city life make Washington state a wonderful place to live. We’re not at all surprised our home state was named #1 by U.S. News & World Report in 2019, which ranks states based on quality of education, healthcare and infrastructure, economy, natural environment and more.

How has COVID-19 impacted the life science industry in Washington state?

Washington’s life science industry has rallied together to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Almost every company whose technology can be applied to COVID-19 has pivoted at least some of their R&D to this global challenge. For example, Washington hosted the first clinical trial of any investigational COVID-19 vaccine (at Kaiser Permanente) and rolled out a new test that can analyze 1,000 samples at a time (UW School of Medicine). There has also been tremendous collaboration across the region. This includes an expanded partnership with Adaptive Biotechnologies and Microsoft to decode the COVID-19 immune response. GM also announced a partnership with Ventec Life Systems in Bothell, WA, to produce much-needed ventilators to treat COVID-19 patients.

Many of our companies are continuing to hire talent from entry level technicians through PhD scientists to keep up with this steady, and in many cases, increased activity. To learn more about the response of Washington’s life science community to COVID-19, check out Life Science Washington’s Coronavirus Resource Center

What about cost of living?

In Seattle, cost of living is significantly lower than in the San Francisco Bay Area, Boston, New York City and many other life science clusters. At the same time, our members offer competitive salaries that enable workers to enjoy the Pacific Northwest lifestyle comfortably. To compare cost of living by city, check out this helpful calculator.

Is Washington state a good place to raise a family?

Washington’s high-ranked schools, abundant parks and excellent healthcare make it one of the best states in the country to raise happy, healthy children.

What relocation assistance is available?

Life Science Washington members work with individual job candidates to develop relocation packages and provide resources to ensure a smooth transition.

Where can I learn more about Life Science Washington and its members?

More questions? Submit your question here and we’ll get back to you: lifesciencewa@lifesciencewa.org.