Process Engineer

What is Freenome?
Freenome is a health technology company bringing accurate, accessible and non-invasive disease screenings to you and your doctor to proactively treat cancer and other diseases at their most manageable stages. Freenome is a place where you can do your best, most meaningful work, and contribute to a whole new way of thinking about curing cancer. It’s a data-driven, diverse company at the intersection of biology, technology and medicine.

Our Mission
Equip you and your family with knowledge and tools to maintain a healthier life and prevent disease.

About the Role
As the first process engineer within Freenome, you will play a key role in shaping and organizing the culture of efficiency within the clinical laboratory and broader operation. You will take point in optimizing the wet, dry and supporting processes to allow Freenome to prepare for multiple stages of scale-up in an elegant fashion. Your responsibilities will include using lab automation and principled design considerations to come up with effective processes based around molecular biology requirements. You will be directly responsible for the implementation of robust processes on robotic systems, and represent process engineering and automation around the company, including with the following groups: supply chain, regulatory, technology transfer, software engineering, wet R&D. You will report directly to the VP of Operations and will have significant influence on how the systems you design are being used.

You will be in charge of growing the process engineering and laboratory automation expertise within the company, including through hiring, covering the following groups: robotics, process engineering, support and service.

Additionally, in the early stages of the company, you will support laboratory training, service of instrumentation, and if absolutely needed, sample processing in the R&D context.

About You
You have strong work ethics, know the value of your contribution and want to make an outsized impact by helping the development and mass-marketing of a life-changing test on the operational side.

You're a seasoned molecular biologist, have designed and supported workflows, and know everything in between. A laboratory touches multiple fields: enzymatics, manufacturing, software, IT, etc… You're well versed in these areas and can participate significantly in all parts of the operation.

The challenges of a startup are exciting and you realize the world-changing value of circulating tumor DNA screening. Freenome is changing the world through a product that has the potential to better the standard of care for all current, future and potential cancer patients. Our ability to build and maintain scalable and efficient workflows in a clinical environment to deliver an always better product will be the main driver for adoption and you will be a key stakeholder in the success. We need to do it quick, we need to do it fast, and most of all we need to do it well. You believe you are up to the task and want to prove it.

You work well with others. The automation team is a service provider to the laboratory teams, and the balance between bringing new ideas and processes to the table with managing existing ones and gathering ideas/requirements from the end users will be a critical part for success of the automation team.

  • Lead and/or participate in the design and implementation of efficient workflows, from receiving of labware and reagents to the generation of reports, in support of a rapidly growing clinical organization
  • Design and execute on optimization experiments for execution of molecular biology processes on robotic platforms
  • Continuously assess the state of the operations and prioritize improvements based on expected improvements
  • Grow into owning the COGS improvements pipeline
  • Plan for critical technology shifts to minimize short and long term costs (e.g. 96 to 384 samples/batch)
  • Lead and mentor more junior talents in a wide array of technologies, including laboratory automation, industrial motion, technical design and design reviews, experimental design and planning, etc...
  • Integrate or build innovative laboratory automation tools, instruments and technologies
  • Design the development of new, automated and efficient lab processes, with the end goal of processing the world’s volume of genetics tests hands free.
  • Bring a can do attitude to solve new and challenging problems in a high pace environment
  • Be the key stakeholder in building a world-class automation team.
  • Participate from the inside in the development of a high growth startup.
  • Perform other related duties as assigned and based on company needs.

What We're Looking For
  • 3+ years developing and implementing high-efficiency workflows for molecular biology, ideally on robotic systems
  • Strong working knowledge of molecular biology and NGS sequencing
  • Proven track record in developing and maintaining robust and efficient workflows, with a particular focus on QCs
  • Successful transfer of technologies and workflows into a high-throughput operation
  • Experience scripting methods on OEM robotic systems (Tecan, Hamilton, Beckman, etc…)
  • Functional knowledge in experimental design, bench execution, process optimization, data analysis
  • A good sense for laboratory automation technologies to lead a lab automation team
  • Hardware and internal support expertise to lead a service team
  • Proven organizational sense to develop an efficient and integrated service, automation and process engineering groups

Nice to Haves
  • Expertise in oncology, immunology, developmental biology, or similar applied fields
  • Experience working with NGS data
  • Broad experience in nucleic acid processing: whole genome, RNA, targeted enrichment, etc...
  • Experience working with a broad set of instruments and data: sequencers, mass spec, qPCR, microscopes, etc
  • Experience with software engineering best practices: code quality, testing, performance optimization, development of research tools infrastructure
  • Experience working in a regulated environment (CLIA / CAP / NYS / FDA / GCLP / etc...)
  • Experience in reagent manufacturing, ideally in a regulated environment (cGMP)

Freenome’s Culture
Our culture is simple. We value Empathy, Trust and Integrity. We feel from the perspectives of each other, patients and the communities we serve. We give each other the benefit of the doubt and believe we’re all working as a team towards our goals. We conduct ourselves with integrity, empowering others to grow in a collaborative environment. Freenome explicitly  prohibits any form of workplace harassment based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, or veteran status.

What does a successful person look like at Freenome?
You can prioritize, manage and execute your goals and align them to the mission of Freenome. You’re a steward of the culture and hold yourself and the team accountable. You believe hiring and mentorship are fundamental to building the organization. You bring ownership to your role, focus on your process and find the gaps to help Freenome reach its full potential. You welcome feedback and criticism knowing its value is to build people up and support each other, rather than tearing each other down.

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