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Platform and Portfolio Lead, Global Health

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Seattle, WA, USA
Posted on Saturday, September 9, 2023

The Foundation

We are the largest nonprofit fighting poverty, disease, and inequity around the world. Founded on a simple premise: people everywhere, regardless of identity or circumstances, should have the chance to live healthy, productive lives. We believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve. We provide an exceptional benefits package to employees and their families which include comprehensive medical, dental, and vision coverage with no premiums, generous paid time off, paid family leave, foundation-paid retirement contribution, regional holidays, and opportunities to engage in several employee communities. As a workplace, we’re committed to creating an environment for you to thrive both personally and professionally.

The Team

Our Global Health Program harnesses advances in science and technology to save lives in poor countries. We focus on the health problems that have a major impact in developing countries but get too little attention and funding. Where proven tools exist, we support sustainable ways to improve their delivery. Where they do not, we invest in research and development of new interventions, such as vaccines, drugs, and diagnostics. Our work in infectious diseases focuses on strategies to fight and prevent HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis (TB), neglected tropical diseases, enteric and diarrheal diseases, pneumonia and polio.

The goal of the Enterics, Diagnostics, Genomics, & Epidemiology (EDGE) Team is to accelerate the reduction in childhood deaths from diarrheal disease in low- and middle-income countries, and to eliminate typhoid as a public health problem globally. We also aim to enhance the development and use of diagnostics for infectious diseases, and to develop low-cost and optimized approaches to pathogen surveillance in LMICs. Guided by the burden of disease and the threat of outbreaks, we develop vaccines, diagnostics, and tools for detection and surveillance of pathogens for delivery to our target populations. Vaccines are being developed or optimized to target rotavirus, bacterial causes of diarrhea (including Shigella and Cholera), and enteric fever (typhoid and paratyphoid). We also focus on extreme volume manufacturing of diagnostics and developing point-of-care molecular diagnostics. Surveillance tools in development include tools for pathogen detection and genomic surveillance from clinical samples and wastewater to optimize global and local surveillance for outbreak and endemic pathogens.

Your Role

The Portfolio and Platform Lead (PPL) is an established role within the BMGF Global Health (GH) division that strives to improve GH’s capabilities in the areas of product development and portfolio management. The PPL plays a critical integrator role, working collaboratively within the Program Strategy Teams (PSTs) Functional Teams and grantees. The over-arching goal of this PPL position is to ensure that the EDGE portfolios of investments related to product development have robust development plans that ultimately result in new impactful interventions. The PPL will adapt and apply their integrated product development experience and approaches to best suit the complex ecosystem in which the team works with various partners including the IVD manufacturers, pharma industry, biotechnology companies, product development partners like the Gates Medical Research Institute, academic research institutions and other governmental and non-governmental funders. We are looking for someone with strong product development experience from the diagnostics, vaccines, drugs, and/or biologics sectors who is ready to apply their skills to a diverse product portfolio. This role will report to the Director of EDGE and work side-by-side with Program Officers/Senior Program Officers/Deputy Directors across EDD and Dx teams within the EDGE PST to apply robust product development planning and management to our investments and priority programs.

What You’ll Do:

  • Develop portfolio execution plans aligned with team’s high-level strategy.
  • Work collaboratively across the EDGE team and with foundation partners and grantees to develop, implement integrated product development plans and track key development landmarks.
  • Provide product development expertise to internal team members and grantees with respect to developing integrated product development plans and assisting in identifying issues, risks and mitigation plans.
  • Conduct, along with the PO/SPO, grantee product development stage gate reviews for determination of grant funding
  • Co-Lead a product development investment team to develop, manage and implement innovative diagnostic/vaccines products, and negotiate, implement and manage complex, performance-based contracts/grants.
  • Consult with partners to enhance impact of projects and ensure optimal learning. This may include: site visits, providing operational guidance and convening meetings of key partners.
  • Work with GH Strategy, Planning and Management division to track programs within context of overall GH portfolio, including collaboration on cost-effectiveness modeling
  • Identify and assess key risks at the portfolio and product level; develop and manage mitigation/ contingency plans
  • Serve as a thought partner to EDGE team on product development challenges, metrics, standard methodologies and approaches
  • Encourage use of standard approaches, tools and methodologies for portfolio management and product management to enable effective decision making
  • Use product development experience, tools and project management skills to enable and encourage effective product project planning, including tracking at the product level
  • Effectively manage relationships with key internal partners within the matrixed organization
  • In partnership with EDGE program staff, work closely with key external product development partners and grantees to enable effective project planning practices and timely insight into challenges and issues
  • Provide project management/alliance management support to product development partnerships and programs with other funders
  • Where relevant, manage investments with a predominant product development focus
  • Proactively identify areas of misalignment and lead the process of developing plans to ‘get back on track’ and refining the portfolio execution plans
  • Assess intervention progress and determine if the grantee requires deeper product development project management support
  • Communicate information to Global Health Leadership team related to the portfolio dynamics that will support strategy development
  • Proactively work with peers/ fellow PPLs to ensure a consistent and meticulous product development approach across the Global Health Program

Your Experience:

  • 12+ years of professional experience in diagnostics, biotech and/or pharmaceutical industries, and 5+ years of senior level operating experience preferred.
  • 5+ years of experience project managing diagnostics and/or vaccines/drugs/biologics R&D efforts at the product and/or portfolio levels required (e.g., discovery, development, commercial delivery), having successfully moved products through IND and/or NDA phases. Likely candidate profiles include Research Project Leader, Vaccine Development Leader, Clinical Team Leader, etc.
  • Either PhD and/or MD (preferred), or Masters in one of the Life Sciences, or proven experience/advanced degree.

Other Attributes:

  • Integrated product development project management (methodology and metrics)
  • Portfolio / platform management (in diagnostics and/or pharma/ biotech context)
  • Project management, implementation planning and associated tools
  • Risk assessment and management (mitigation and contingency plans)
  • Solid understanding and / or specific knowledge of several elements of product and / or service development and launch (e.g., discovery, development, commercial launch)
  • Strong oral and written communications
  • Strong presentation skills
  • Effective meeting and relationship facilitation
  • Ability to effectively manage relationships with key internal team members within the matrixed
  • organization
  • Strong meeting and relationship facilitation and negotiating skills
  • Strong people management skill
  • Broad working knowledge and / or specific knowledge of several elements of product and / or service development and launch (e.g., discovery, development, commercial launch). Diagnostic and vaccine development experience preferred
  • Experience working on teams with diverse cultural and professional backgrounds
  • Ability to travel up to 30% domestically and internationally

The typical salary range for this role is $149,800 to $278,700 USD. The exact offer will be determined by a variety of factors such as the candidate’s individual skills, qualifications, and experience relative to the requirements of the role.

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Hiring Requirements

As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.

Candidate Accommodations

If you require assistance due to a disability in the application or recruitment process, please submit a request here.

Inclusion Statement

We are dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We strive for a global and cultural workplace that supports ever greater diversity, equity, and inclusion — of voices, ideas, and approaches — and we support this diversity through all our employment practices.

All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve our mission will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to race, color, age, religion, pregnancy, sex, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and prior protected activity.