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Engineer I (Laboratory Automation)

San Rafael, CA 94903

Posted: 11/29/2023 Employment Type: Contract Job Category: Scientific Job Number: 590602 Is job remote?: No Country: United States

Job Description

The Center of Technology (CoTe) is a centralized laboratory built around platform technologies and made available to scientists and physicians across Worldwide Research and Development (WWRD). The Laboratory Automation Core within the CoTe designs and builds automated solutions for high throughput screening and partners with scientists to develop automated assays to speed discovery. We have Hamilton STAR, Agilent Bravo and Biomek FXP liquid handlers integrated with plate readers, plate sealers, incubators, and/or cell imagers to provide fit-for-purpose drug discovery platforms.


We are searching for a highly motivated Associate Engineer or Engineer I to join the Laboratory Automation Core.  The successful candidate will be interested in learning new techniques and approaches to laboratory automation, pay close attention to detail, have ability to run multiple projects in parallel, and possess good organization skills. The position requires adaptability, creativity, and a capacity for constant innovation in pursuit of excellent science. 


This position offers a unique career opportunity to work on a wide variety of projects that contribute to the entire spectrum of a product lifecycle, from early drug discovery and non-clinical work through all stages of clinical and commercial development. The successful candidate will assist with the design, implementation, and maintenance of automation solutions for high-throughput biology protocols like NGS workflows, iPSC cell culture protocols, and standard in vitro biochemical and cell-based assays.


  • Assist with design, implementation, and maintenance of new lab automation systems.
  • Operate robotic platforms to execute biological protocols. Assess the efficiency and quality of operations to prioritize process improvements.
  • Execute experiments to validate the functionality and performance of lab automation systems, troubleshoot issues, and implement improvements.
  • Work with contract research organizations and lab operations teams to service and ensure supply of consumables for automated solutions. Provide technical training and support to laboratory personnel of existing and new automation processes, equipment, and technologies.
  • Collaborate with automation vendors and contractors to facilitate their onsite visits.
  • Clearly and thoroughly document your work in your electronic notebook (Benchling).
Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Biotechnology, Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, or related fields. Established field of expertise in molecular biology, protein, chemistry, analytical chemistry, instrumental analysis, proteomics, genomics, or similar.
  • Must have minimum of 2 years  in the Biotech/Pharmaceutical Industry with experience working with lab automation equipment (liquid handling, robotic arms etc.).
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills to collaborate effectively with cross-functional teams, scientists, engineers, etc.
  • Strong understanding of laboratory processes and workflows, with the ability to translate them into automation requirements.
  • Some programming experience in any language (e.g., Python, Java, C++) is a plus.
  • Experienced in operating plate-based liquid handlers (e.g., Vantage, Star, Bravo, Lynx, Tempest, Echo) is a plus.
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Although this hasn't been an issue at The Planet Group, the staffing industry has seen an increase in people falsely representing themselves as recruiters to gather personal information from job seekers. For your safety, do not provide sensitive data to anyone you have not spoken with thoroughly and never provide banking information during the application process. Candidate safety is a top priority at The Planet Group.

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