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IT Capability Lead - Oncology Digital Therapeutics (Senior Director of IT)

Location Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States Waltham, Massachusetts, United States New York, New York, United States Job ID R-073844 Date posted 05/12/2020

IT Capability Lead - Oncology Digital Therapeutics

Job Description / Capsule

At AstraZeneca, we lead our industry in our development of a strong and varied pipeline. This means our people are here to win, we give you a breadth of opportunities to be curious and do cutting edge, unique work that has big impact on science and medicine. We explore innovations and confront challenges that others won't, in order to have a greater impact on patients' lives.

AstraZeneca’s Digital Health R&D and IT functions partner closely with a common goal of dramatically improving patient experience and outcomes. We are contributing to the transformation of healthcare, re-setting expectations on how to augment patient outcomes by using digital health solutions in combination with life-changing treatments. This is a strategic priority that we are scaling rapidly from a significant number of pilots in the last 5 years. AstraZeneca would like to leap frog in this area and has prioritized digital in R&D as a critical strategic area of focus by 2025, as part of the overall company strategy. We seek strong talent to join our teams in delivering on this ambition!

The Digital Health R&D journey incorporates 3 key stages:

  • Stage 1 – foundational, reimagining how we work, by maximizing the use of digital, data and analytics to transform processes within R&D – delivering significant benefits on speed of portfolio delivery (goal of 9 months acceleration) productivity (goal of 20% reduction in cost per patient per year), quality at source, patient experience and probability of success.
  • Stage 2 – advanced, redefining clinical trials and digital health to improve overall patient experiences and outcomes, such as redefining patient populations, conducting remote clinical trials, developing patient apps to reduce/manage adverse events and improve patient outcomes (Overall Survival), using data from EMR/EHR and RWD instead of control arms, conduct continuous patient monitoring through PROs, and creating new end points enabling studies in earlier stages of disease (ctDNA changes).
  • Stage 3 – future-readiness, reimagining healthcare, such as AZ as a healthcare provider beyond medicines for certain indications (example: Breast Cancer, providing monitoring, predictive analytics and therapies for improved outcomes), full integration of Multiomics (imaging, genomics, proteomics …) to better predict and significantly improve patients’ health

The Oncology Digital Therapeutics IT Capability Lead will enable efforts across the Oncology Digital Health R&D space focused on stages 2 and 3 of our digital journey. This role will be the overall accountable IT leader developing our long-term vision, execution strategy, and program delivery in partnership with our Head of Oncology Digital Therapeutics. We are seeking a leader prepared to tackle longstanding industry challenges and uncover opportunities made possible by the latest technological advances. Strategic relationship development is essential, as is strong cross-functional people leadership, talent and organizational capability development. The ideal candidate will bring a diverse background in applying new technologies in the life sciences domain, sharing the broader team’s passion to dramatically improve the lives of patients we serve. The role combines in-depth understanding of digital health technologies, clinical development, and the oncology disease area to drive the creation of innovative technology solutions.

Come join our team in pushing the boundaries of science and technology to transform the lives of patients living with cancer, and ultimately eliminating cancer as the cause of death.

Typical Accountabilities

In this role, you will lead and directly manage a team of IT business partners and indirectly manage a team of architects, engineers, project managers, business analysts and service managers working collaboratively as part of our R&D IT team.

Typical accountabilities of this role include:

  • Developing and owning the strategic IT relationship with senior business leaders, developing a deep understanding and contributing to business strategies, priorities and challenges, ensuring IT investments are aligned to business objectives.
  • Developing the vision and strategy for internal IT capability development aligned to Oncology Digital Health initiatives, providing leadership and oversight within the IT organization for implementation.
  • Partnering with business leaders to develop a patient-oriented and business value-focused digital strategy for Oncology.
  • Delivering a project portfolio based on internal Oncology pipeline priorities and external industry trends, aligned with Oncology digital strategy.
  • Proactively and continuously identifying new opportunities through internal and external networks for AZ to improve the patient experience and accelerate drug pipeline delivery through digital.
  • Leading high-level investigations on requirements specifications and feasibility studies, developing a range of options aligned to Oncology digital strategy.
  • Presenting and gaining buy-in from senior leaders for digital initiatives, leveraging domain knowledge to gain credibility, trust, and commitment.
  • Managing a $30m+ portfolio of multi-year IT investments and run costs, prioritized to align with emerging business strategy, operational risks and opportunities.
  • Facilitating accurate IT portfolio planning and delivery quality assurance collaboratively with other supporting IT team roles.
  • Contributing to and influencing the enterprise AZ IT and digital strategy, actively communicating it in meaningful ways to senior R&D business leaders.
  • Leading senior-level governance forums and advisory boards – internal and external.
  • Management of Oncology-specific and broader technology partnerships across pharma and industry. 

Education, Qualifications and Experience


  • Rich experience in bio-pharma industry, specifically in Oncology clinical development and commercial launch
  • Rich experience in delivering patient-facing technology solutions in both clinical and commercial settings
  • Demonstrated delivery of significant scientific information systems.
  • Deep knowledge and understanding of the Clinical Development domain.
  • Extensive knowledge of scientific and clinical pharmaceutical processes.
  • Extensive knowledge of clinical or biometrics (statistics) analysis and reporting processes
  • Proven ability to interpret and communicate technical and scientific information.
  • Experience of identification and implementation of innovative technology solutions
  • Evidence of leading and developing innovative solutions
  • Experience of defining the business strategies and influencing the vision of senior leaders
  • Experience of leading high value business cases & mobilising high value investments
  • Experience in managing, developing and leading virtual teams
  • A proven track record of delivering results
  • Ability to travel both domestically and internationally.


  • Graduate level education in a related degree
  • Leader within pharma thought leadership networks and organisations
  • Experience working across diverse, global teams

Skills and Capabilities


  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills including presenting
  • Excellent influencing, networking and team working skills
  • High level awareness of developments in the Information Technology marketplace
  • Able to manage and lead negotiations, expectations and solutions across complex stakeholder groups
  • Expert relationship building skills with the ability to influence others to achieve objectives
  • Expertise in planning, change management and problem solving and able to resolve issues of a highly complex and strategic nature
  • Proven ability to relate and respond to business needs in an IT environment


  • Program management leadership with experience of cross geography, high value implementations
  • Ability to work well in and across diverse global teams
  • Ability to partner and work in a matrix organization

AstraZeneca embraces diversity and equality of opportunity. We are committed to building an inclusive and diverse team representing all backgrounds, with as wide a range of perspectives as possible, and harnessing industry-leading skills. We believe that the more inclusive we are, the better our work will be. We welcome and consider applications to join our team from all qualified candidates, regardless of their characteristics. We comply with all applicable laws and regulations on non-discrimination in employment (and recruitment), as well as work authorisation and employment eligibility verification requirements.

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Great culture, great work assignments, supportive management. Rotation opportunity within the company. They value inclusion and diversity.