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  #21  
Old 21.11.2019, 20:37
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

many different things go into the consideration on the move and overall it is even ok for me not to work

I guess my question is more about the differences in the US pay vs CH pay - is that really true that the pay scale in CH Pharma is less than US Academia in the SF Bay area? I've earned PhD degree in 2006 and ever since held a faculty position. Yet now the base salary offered is what the base salary was in the US >5 years ago. I wonder if it is because of the SF Bay area, does not seem so because of the survey. My bad negotiation skills? Reality of the salary level here?
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  #22  
Old 21.11.2019, 21:13
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

The employer in Switzerland is not determining their CHF salary offer based on what you can earn in USD doing a different job in a different sector in SF.

They price the job based on its market value in Switzerland.

If one really must compare earnings between two cities in different continents, you should ask for a gross to net calculation from your possible new employer.

And, make a cost of living comparison.

For example, while housing in Switzerland is a significant cost, it's cheaper than most of SF, and inflation in Switzerland is much lower than the US.
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Old 21.11.2019, 22:21
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

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This might be a bit off topic, but I think is relevant. I've just relocated from the US where I held a job in the Academia, yet here am looking for a somewhat similar position in Pharma. I always was under the impression that Pharma pays much more than universities. But based on an offer I got it seems quite the opposite. The salary decrease - while going from Academia in the US/SF Bay area to Pharma in CH - I will have to put up with if I accept is 25%. And it is a 25% DECREASE, not an increase. Is this a reflection of my bad negotiation skills, or have you experienced something similar?

Plus no medical expenses are covered, and some other things lacking.

I am in Stats, and here is survey over salaries in the US. Pharma with Doctorate degree 10th percentile is 128.8K$/year. How does it sound relative to what is happening here?

https://magazine.amstat.org/blog/201...statisticians/
If you have no industry experience, this might be the reason for low salary. The salary is low, but probably the bonus is paid on top? How big is the company? If this is one of the smaller service providers then the salary will not be as high as in big pharma companies.
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Old 21.11.2019, 23:16
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

Salaries in CH for the exact same job are generally higher that in the US (talking same job and level within same company). Talking take home cash not net to net etc.

Your question is difficult to answer as you are comparing different roles.

Taking it will depend on how much you want to relocate and potentially start a new career.

K
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  #25  
Old 22.11.2019, 06:39
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

Thank you all for responses, very interesting.

The company is Novartis and the 25% reduction is with the consideration of bonus, well assuming that it will be at 15%.

Yes, I don't have industry experience and that is one of the arguments used by the HR. But frankly I don't see why it is an issue, to me this is more about the context than the essence. The essence of the job in the same, while context can be picked up easily.

Maybe I don't really have any leverage to bring the salary up w/o a competing offer. And maybe because of the relocation I do need to accept it as is and gain local experience. Yet, something does feel very wrong about it

I do appreciate your thoughts/experiences on this...
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  #26  
Old 22.11.2019, 07:03
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

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Thank you all for responses, very interesting.

The company is Novartis and the 25% reduction is with the consideration of bonus, well assuming that it will be at 15%.
Don't assume anything about bonuses. Where I worked once, during the first two years, we got a project bonus (10%) + productivity bonus (50% to 150% of the standard company level), according to performance appraisal. Then the program manager needed to cut CHF1M of his budget in order to get his bonus. So he changed the criteria. Productivity bonus criteria were changed to 0% to 100% (of standard) and project bonus was changed to 0% to 10%. Most people got 50% (of standard)+5%. Strangely that year, few people got the best performance appraisal, and more than previous years got "targets not met". But the program manager got his CHF200K bonus, so that was alright.

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Yes, I don't have industry experience and that is one of the arguments used by the HR. But frankly I don't see why it is an issue, to me this is more about the context than the essence. The essence of the job in the same, while context can be picked up easily.
Largely, but not entirely true. Someone who has already understanding of the context will be able to hit the ground running. And I'm afraid this is the standard attitude within most industry sectors. Even IT programming jobs have "must have understanding of GxP and validation. Even those these are often entirely procedural (as far as IT is concerned). In fact, people trying to jobs in academia from working in business can face the same barrier.

If HR see it as an issue, it's an issue - no matter how specious. They're the ones with the power to hire. If you want more money, you'll have to find other arguments.
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Old 22.11.2019, 07:27
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

The salary is low but the lack of industry experience is highly relevant. I work in the same function, mainly in pharma but also briefly in academia. There are huge differences in the job between pharma and academia. You won't be able to hit the ground running and there will be significant process and work culture differences to learn. If you go in prepared to learn and embrace the differences, with your previous experience combined you can rise fast.
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Old 22.11.2019, 22:04
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

It also depends on the position on offer. Is it a project/program statistician in a therapeutic area or an expert statistican in a specialized area such as drug safety or methodology research? For the latter it could be much easier to adapt if you are a technical expert in the area and you also have more potential to move up. The former would need a lot effort for someone moving to pharam from academia after having spent a long time in there. Don't understimate the effort you need to put in.
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  #29  
Old 22.11.2019, 23:06
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

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I've just relocated from the US
Bad move. Relocate back, brush up your coding skills and market yourself to SF tech companies as a d̶a̶t̶a̶ ̶s̶c̶i̶e̶n̶t̶i̶s̶t̶ ML engineer, a lot more money to be had this way. I've just been pondering about this myself in the other thread, and so far my conclusion is that with very few exceptions 200k is practically the market ceiling here even for any high skilled professions. Unless perhaps you go into management, Europe loves managers! Engineers and scientists - not so much.
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  #30  
Old 22.11.2019, 23:12
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

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Bad move. Relocate back and market yourself to SF tech companies as a d̶a̶t̶a̶ ̶s̶c̶i̶e̶n̶t̶i̶s̶t̶ ML engineer, a lot more money to be had this way. I've just been pondering about this myself in the other thread, and so far my conclusion is that with very few exceptions 200k is practically the market ceiling here even for any high skilled professions. Unless perhaps you go into management, Europe loves managers! Engineers and scientists - not so much.
You only focus on money.... there is more in life..... And no, money does not buy all
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Old 22.11.2019, 23:14
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

Sure, sure, but he asked a money question, so I think a money-focused reply is fair and appropriate.
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  #32  
Old 23.11.2019, 05:34
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Re: Novartis - Lead vs Head

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Everything and everyone is a "Head of" something at Novartis, often even a "Global Head of" whatever, the latter usually just indicating that the jobs sits in a global, HQ-based function, but personally, I would assume someone with the title Global Head has actually proper global responsibility. Further, a massive proportion of those so-called Heads have no direct reports whatsoever. OTOH there's plenty of "Lead of" whatever that actually do have direct reports.

As VI says, the titles are standardized in the US along a job level grid, but not anywhere else. Simply because outside the US, no one gives a damn whether your job comes with a Director title or not. However, beyond the US, there's more structure in some parts/functions than in others.

So bottom line: no one can tell you what one means over another and whether one is somehow more important or better than the other. Chances are no one will really care either.
Your comment reminds me of an inside joke we have going with some colleagues where we renamed some of the job titles in our company (who hasn't done this?)

Receptionist: Head of Communications
Janitor: Head of Infrastructure
Intern: Management Trainee

Project Manager: Postman/Chief Delegation Officer
Head of Site: Social Initiative (in the sense that we are playing our part in keeping unemployment down by giving him an office and a salary)
IT Guy: Reboot specialist/Ticket Collector
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