Procurement Associate Placement at MSD

Top Employer
Placement Year (10 Months+)
Application Deadline
Central London and City
Role May Involve
Purchasing and Supply

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MSD is a Top Employer
“I have learnt many valuable skills in both techniques and transferable skills e.g. giving presentations, writing scientific papers and teamwork. The placement also gave me an insight into how the pharmaceutical industry works.…” - Read full review

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Procurement Associate Placement

We offer exciting 12-month placement opportunities to students that are looking to work with us to deliver on our mission to save and improve lives. A placement with us will give you the opportunity to collaborate alongside subject matter experts, bring your own ideas and share real responsibility whilst delivering on meaningful projects alongside a passionate, diverse and inclusive workforce.

This role will be based in our brand new, state-of-the-art co-working facilities in Moorgate, London; with fantastic amenities and support services including a gym, coffee bar and conference rooms.

Job Description:

Our Support Functions deliver services and makes recommendations about ways to enhance our workplace and the experience of working at our organization. Our Support Functions include HR, Finance, Information Technology, Legal, Procurement, Administration, Facilities and Security.

Our Sourcing team partner with the business to ensure efficient acquisition of goods and services that enables the commercialization of our medicines, vaccines and Animal Health products. We collaborate internationally and are grouped into center-led categories and regional operating teams.

We are seeking a placement student to join our UK Procurement team which looks after the Sourcing needs of the MSD Human Health Division for UK and Ireland. We report into the European Major Markets team, which in turn reports into the Global Procurement organisation, centred in the USA.

We are responsible for Human Health activities which require the use of third parties. We work closely with the business to assist with their sourcing of Marketing Services including the move to more Digital communication channels, Human Resources, Clinical services, Patient Support Programmes and Market Research. However, we are also involved in activities that involve Travel, Site Services, Fleet, Mobile Services etc in combination with our Regional and Global procurement colleagues.

We manage day to day transactional activities relating to contracting, vendor management and due diligence as well as the more strategic elements of sourcing such as Strategy Development, Commercial tenders, Negotiations and Project implementation. No day is the same!


Day to day operational activities

  • Assist the team in completing daily operational activities e.g. vendor additions, order approvals, contract administration. You will learn how to use our SAP system and other bespoke MSD sourcing systems and processes
  • Assist our team communication plans where we promote our strategy, key projects and progress via presentations to our business stakeholders, updating our team SharePoint sites

Sourcing & Project Assistance

  • Assist in managing sourcing projects. The aim would be for you to lead at least one project end-to-end
  • Assist in preparing stakeholder communications, Requests for Information (RFI), Tenders and pitch processes, negotiations and contracting. We work closely with other functions such as Human Resources, Legal, Finance, Compliance to meet these needs

Drive a High Performing Procurement Organization:

  • Monthly update of team metrics (Spend, Savings, Working Capital, Supplier Diversity)
  • Review and Improvement of Procurement Processes & local Policies and Procedures

Technical Specifications

  • You will be looking to complete a 12-month placement in your third or penultimate year of study, returning to your course at the end of the placement
  • Studying towards a degree (or equivalent qualification)
  • Have an interest in working in business / supply chain and / or the Pharmaceutical industry
  • We work a lot with spreadsheets, so a good working knowledge of Excel is useful
  • Demonstrates numerical and analytical ability
  • Be organised, able to prioritise and multitask – we are a busy team and there is lots going on all the time

Qualities we look for

  • Operates with a high level of integrity, transparency and accountability
  • Comprehends and aligns with our organization’s core values
  • Aligns and fosters a culture of diversity and inclusivity
  • Demonstrates initiative, proactivity and academic curiosity
  • Encourages and boosts their colleagues through teamwork
  • Demonstrates clear and effective communication, we work cross functionally and partner with other teams. Good working relationships are important
  • Demonstrates a desire to learn and improve their performance through feedback
  • Our work is flexible so we can tailor work to suit the person. If you want a role that will enable you to grow in remit as you learn more and gain in confidence, then we can provide this
  • Learns from and helps others overcome obstacles
  • Has a can-do attitude, anticipates problems and proposes solutions. Uses initiative to solve problems

Start Date

Summer 2021


All the student placement positions listed above will be based in our brand-new office in Moorgate, London, opening in January.

Deadline for applications:

We assess applications on a rolling basis, so we encourage you to apply as soon as possible. This role will be removed once this position has been filled.

About MSD

We are a global biopharmaceutical leader with a diverse portfolio of prescription medicines, oncology, vaccines and animal health products. We are driven by our purpose to develop and deliver innovative products that save and improve lives. With over 70,000 employees operating in more than 140 countries, we offer state of the art laboratories, plants and offices that are designed to Inspire our employees as we learn, develop and grow in our careers. We are proud of over 125 years of service to humanity and continue to be one of the world’s biggest investors in Research & Development.

We are officially certified by the Top Employer Institute and been awarded the exclusive Top Employer United Kingdom Certification for the third year running.

Other important information:

Our presence in the UK goes back a long way. For over 80 years, we’ve been researching, developing and supplying new medicines and vaccines that prevent and treat diseases that occur at every stage of life.

Today we're one of the top five biopharmaceutical companies in the UK and employ over 2,000 people across five sites in Hertfordshire, Northumberland, Buckinghamshire, Edinburgh and London.

How are MSD in the UK adjusting our hiring process with COVID-19?

At MSD in the UK our key priorities during the current COVID-19 outbreak are both maintaining supply of critical medicines to our patients and ensuring the health and safety of our employees and candidates. In support of Government measures to limit the spread of infection, we have therefore developed a new flexible, virtual route for candidates applying and interviewing for our open roles.

Equal Opportunities

We are proud to be a company that embraces the value of bringing diverse, talented, and committed people together. The fastest way to breakthrough innovation is when diverse ideas come together in an inclusive environment. We encourage our colleagues to respectfully challenge one another’s thinking and approach problems collectively. We are an equal opportunity employer, committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace.

What we look for …

In a world of rapid innovation, we seek brave Inventors who want to make an Impact in all aspects of our business, enabling breakthroughs that will affect generations to come. We encourage you to bring your disruptive thinking, collaborative spirit and diverse perspective to our organization. Together we will continue Inventing For Life, Impacting Lives while Inspiring Your Career Growth.


How to apply

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