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Frederick, Maryland, United States
Job reference: R-052610
Posted date: Jul. 09, 2019

At AstraZeneca we turn ideas into life changing medicines. Working here means being entrepreneurial, thinking big and working together to make the impossible a reality. We’re focused on the potential of science to address the unmet needs of patients around the world. We commit to those areas where we think we can really change the course of medicine and bring big new ideas to life. As a Principal Engineer - Business Systems in Frederick, MD, you’ll play a pivotal role in channeling our scientific capabilities to make a positive impact on changing patients’ lives. Operations at AstraZeneca is a truly world-class business unit. It offers one of the most exciting, fast paced, challenging and rewarding work environments in the world of operations, supply chain and manufacturing.

Global Operations is fundamental to our purpose of delivering life-changing medicines to patients, touching every aspect of our business and providing a platform for everything that we do. We harness the specialist talents of 13,000 people around the world – 20% of our global workforce. With 30 production facilities in 18 countries we’re focused on supplying our medicines with care, quality and efficiency, reducing the time from lab to patient. Keen to bridge the gap between science and patients? Turn research into reality? And forge a global career that’s full of possibilities, as part of a world-class team? Come and thrive in our vibrant, energizing, connected and supportive culture and make a real difference to patients. Hear from our Senior Leaders about why they know AstraZeneca is a great place to work.

The Principal Engineer - Business Systems is responsible for planning, designing and executing multiple simultaneous projects that are complex and technically demanding within a specific area/field through significant interactions with IT, automation, technical resources and external experts.

In addition, the Principal Engineer will:

  • Lead team in identifying technical solutions from business requirements for in scope systems, GMBR workflows and associated interfaces.
  • Collaborate with cross-functional groups including, but not limited to Manufacturing, Quality, Technical Operations, Engineering/Automation and Project Management in order to meet project timelines and company goals
  • Align technical solutions across IT, FMC Facilities, PAS|X, Automation, external vendors and associated interfaces to meet program’s business requirements
  • Lead, in conjunction with Ops Readiness Workstream & Local Process Champion, to ensure that the application and electronic workflows comply with operations processes and meet GxP requirements
  • Ensure that the BAU resources receive sufficient training and hands-on experience to return to their department and confidently work with the MES application in an operational environment
  • Prototype technical approaches
  • Oversee technical solutions validation  
  • Lead the timely tracking and completion of documentation (SOP’s, Training material, validation documentation) associated to the technical workstream
  • Multitask and manage frequent changes in scope, timeline and priority.
  • Use technical knowledge to make decisions on projects.
  • Utilize forward-looking perspective to contribute to “go/no go” decisions. 
  • Responsible for meeting project goals within time and budget constraints. 
  • Maintain technical roadmap including key technical capabilities across site/business unit.
  • Make recommendations on technologies for company to pursue. 
  • Strategic thinker within and outside area of specialty.

Problem Solving

  • Provide solutions to a variety of technical problems of challenging scope and complexity. 
  • Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited information exists.
  • Anticipate and manage project-related investigation and issues. Escalates them to senior management as appropriate.

Freedom To Act

  • Perform role with limited direction to meet organizational objectives. 
  • Has considerable latitude in determining technical objectives of assignment. 
  • Work is monitored for technical judgment and achievement.


  • Decisions or recommendations result in achievement of significant project objectives. 
  • Leader in the AZ community as evidenced by internal consulting, mentoring and project team participation. 
  • Drives technical innovation through personal leadership.

Interpersonal Communication

  • Establish frequent inter- and intradepartmental collaborations. 
  • Demonstrates ability to supervise a work team. 
  • Establish contacts with outside centers of excellence in field of specialization and has contacts with customers and suppliers.  
  • Active in professional organizations. 
  • Establish contacts with members of academia and has contacts with customers and suppliers.



  • Bachelor's Degree


  • Minimum of fifteen (15) years' experience in the Bioprocess & Pharmaceutical Manufacturing area.
  • Extensive expertise as a technical specialist. 
  • Good knowledge of broad disciplines relating to Bioprocess & Pharmaceutical Manufacturing. 
  • Ability to apply on a broad base, principles, theories, and concepts of automation and enterprise systems. 
  • General knowledge manufacturing, automation processes and enterprise systems.
  • Excellent oral and written communication and cross-functional collaboration skills are required.


Inclusive of the "required" skills above

  • MS degree
  • PhD Sciences degree

Next Steps – Apply today!

To be considered for this exciting opportunity, please complete the full application on our website at your earliest convenience – it is the only way that our Recruiter and Hiring Manager can know that you feel well qualified for this opportunity.  If you know someone who would be a great fit, please share this posting with them.

AstraZeneca is an equal opportunity employer. AstraZeneca will consider all qualified applicants for employment without discrimination on grounds of disability, sex or sexual orientation, pregnancy or maternity leave status, race or national or ethnic origin, age, religion or belief, gender identity or re-assignment, marital or civil partnership status, protected veteran status (if applicable) or any other characteristic protected by law. 

Principal Engineer - Business Systems - Frederick, MD - Global Operations
Global Operations

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