Research Scientist I

Job ID
Research & Development
Location : City
San Luis Obispo

Job Description



We are looking for a candidate who is a highly self-motivated organic chemist with enthusiasm to invent new functional organic molecules for a variety of bioapplicaitons. The successful candidate will not only have a desire to create new intellectual property, but also an astute ability to convert them to new product realization. We seek a candidate that nurtures a collaborative environment through the courage of independent thought, the empathy of listening to diverse perspectives, and the drive to individually demonstrate the proof of concept within a team context. The candidate will join a large team of chemists focused on inventing new molecules and materials as part of the Chemistry Discovery Group in San Luis Obispo, California. He or she will independently and actively design, synthesize, and characterize biocompatible molecules by working closely with analysts and with biologists to develop the optimal protocols to evaluate the performance in bioapplications, and further launch new product by working closely with New Production Realization Team across different departments.  




  • Ph.D in Organic Chemistry with 0-3 years of experience with multi-step organic synthesis, purification and characterization.
  • Ability to create independent thought and problem solving with strong knowledge of scientific principles and concepts required.
  • Ability to drive the project independently and collaborate with biologists in a research collaborative environment.
  • Ability to identify potential critical material attributes to the critical performance.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Ability to present research activities in a scientific manner to the group, management team, and outside customers.
  • Ability to write manuscripts for peer-reviewed journals.




  • Knowledge of electric chemistry and probes.
  • Knowledge of dye chemistry and fluorescence probes.
  • Knowledge of modern organic synthetic process, such as automation, or flow chemistry, etc.
  • Good computer skills, including working knowledge of relevant computer software applications such as Word, Excel, and Chem Draw.




  1. Design and synthesize a variety of biocompatible organic molecules in collaborating with analysts and biologists to evaluate assay performance for bioapplications, and provide proof of concept potential for new product.
  2. Further explore the chemical structure of a molecule and its biological activity for an optimal compound with desired performance, solubility, stability and chemical safety.
  3. Lead a New Product Realization Team and work closely with the team members across different departments at Promega Biosciences, and further integrate with biology team at Promega Madison to deliver the key deliverables for new product realization.
  1. Apply knowledge and experience to solve complex scientific problems working within an internal team of chemists and biologists. Strive for synergistic co-creativity within that team.
  2. Present scientific results and other reports to small or large groups within the company
  3. Interface with highly valued internal and external customers with professionalism. 
  4. Maintain high level of knowledge related to current developments in organic chemistry, chemical biology and life science tool development.
  5. All employees must complete assigned duties in a safe manner 



May support other projects within Discovery Team.


The marginal functions of this position have not been included.  This job description in no way implies that these are the only duties to be performed.  An employee will be required to follow any other job-related instruction and to perform any other job-related duties requested by the supervisor.




  • Must be able to create eloquent research summaries and compelling presentations.
  • Must be fully competent in basic chemistry, arithmetic, algebra and basic statistical analysis.
  • Must be capable of executing complex experimental protocols with accuracy and consistency. Requires good organizational skills.
  • Should embrace the challenge of risky, long-term, highly collaborative research projects that may not succeed. Should be comfortable with accepting when those projects don’t work out.
  • Focus on the success of the team and the company in addition to personal success.
  • Other essential skills: Decision‑making, perception and analysis, comprehension and memorization.




  • Must be able to move about the building and labs including climbing stairs.
  • Must be able to stand for long periods.
  • Good hearing, vision, and sense of smell is required in monitoring reactions
  • Must be able to identify and distinguish colors.
  • Requires corrected vision for near (within 20 cm) and far (greater than 3m) activities.
  • Must be able to use a computer



The primary work area is the Discovery laboratory, where there is the possibility of exposure chemicals that are used in the development of products and potential new products.  Because all processes are conducted according to safety and environmental procedures, exposures will be minimal and below OSHA levels as found in SDSs for the compounds.  Proper protection (i.e., fume hoods, breathing air, gloves, safety glasses) will be required and provided.  Exposure to cold, freezing and sub-freezing temperatures may occur.  Exposure to high temperature may occur. Exposure to noise from equipment used in manufacturing processes may occur.




Decisions made by this position are critical to the success of the company.  Projects can be delayed without the accurate and timely results provided by this position.  Unnecessary financial expenditures could also result from judgement errors of this position.




This job is expected to be performed with little supervision once the task has been explained.  Decisions about research approach, material, and method development for testing, and working with other personnel in other departments synthesis are left to this individual.  Updates and progress of projects should be reported to the direct report.




Requisitions for equipment, instrument maintenance and special project expenditures are expected. Expenditures above a predefined level will require laboratory manager approval.







Company Info:


Promega Biosciences, located in San Luis Obispo, blends innovative research in chemistry with excellence in manufacturing to meet the rapidly changing needs of the scientific community. We synthesize and manufacture essential reagents to help Promega succeed as a life science leader.


Our areas of expertise include synthesis, process design and scale-up, and commercial manufacturing (grams to kilograms) of modified luciferins and coelenterazines. These pro-bioluminescent products aid in life science research. We bring pride, passion, and purpose to our work and the products we provide.


Promega Biosciences offers its employees a work environment that encourages creativity, work-life balance, and personal and professional growth. We support community involvement and are committed to being good stewards and reducing our impact on the environment. Promega fosters a positive, fun, and warm family culture. To learn more about our values, please visit our Corporate Responsibility website.

We offer a competitive salary and benefits package including comprehensive medical insurance, dental and vision insurance, 401k matching, company-paid life insurance, time-off benefits, and more.

Our San Luis Obispo facility is at the heart of California’s beautiful central coast. San Luis Obispo is a destination for wine aficionados, nature lovers, and pleasure-seekers alike. You might enjoy views of the Pacific Ocean from one of our scenic Nine Sisters, a chain of volcanic peaks that run along the coast. Or, spend a day gallivanting around the many wineries, local boutiques, and renowned restaurants in the area. Proclaimed as the “happiest town in the USA”, our community provides a rich and rewarding place to live and play. To learn more about San Luis Obispo, check out the VisitSLO website.

Diversity is important at Promega. We are proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer, and make employment decisions without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran status, disability, or any other protected class.



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