>1,000 Biotech Job Openings in Madison, Wisconsin

Map of local biotech companies in the Madison area
The locations of some of Madison’s largest biotech companies

Originally prepared by Bryan Husk: January 9, 2018
Last update: October 6, 2021

Madison biotech companies continue recruitment and retention of scientific talent to meet record job growth.

Biotechnology companies in Madison, Wisconsin and surrounding Dane County have experienced staggering growth since 2015, and there is no sign of a slow down. Continuously sampling the largest local biotech companies revealed steady employment growth with 451 job openings in January 2018, 413 openings six months later, and 474 openings entering February 2019.

The COVID-19 pandemic has fueled growth in Wisconsin’s leading biotech sector even further:

With over 1,000 biotech-related job openings noted in October 2021, local biotechnology job openings have DOUBLED in Dane County since the the start of the pandemic. 

Whether you are an entry-level bench scientist or a senior executive, this surge in growth and employment presents a rare career opportunity.

Madison Biotechnology Job Opportunity Highlights

Biotechnology Company # Jobs 10/6/2021 # Jobs 3/19/2021 # Jobs 2/20/2020 # Jobs 9/24/2019 # Jobs 2/5/2019 # Jobs 7/19/2018 # Jobs 1/9/2018
BioForward Talent Initiative (multiple) (multiple) (multiple) (multiple) (multiple) (multiple) (multiple)
ABS Global 20 10 20
Accuray 45 58 35 12 24 15 24
Aldevron 15 16 12 9
Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals 23 25 19 17 8 7 7
Catalent 113 139 18 38 27 31 57
FUJIFILM CDI 19 10 9 4 5 14 26
Labcorp Drug Development (formerly Covance) 110 86 76 72 55 57 59
DNAStar 1 1 1 0 ~8 ~8
IFF (formerly DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences) 14 8 7 8 8 7 5
Eurofins 35 19 28 18 18
Exact Sciences 223 131 99 172 162 77 81
Illumina 41 7 8 4 4 10 8
IntelliGen Technologies 28 13 6 20 12
Invenra 17 8 0 6
LGC Biosearch Technologies (formerly Lucigen) 8 13 5 1 3 4 4
Luminex 4 7 2 0 1 4 4
MilliporeSigma 49 28 12 9 5 9 12
PPD 164 102 66 60 75 98 64
Promega Corporation 63 32 33 24 36 47 50
Scientific Protein Laboratories 11 11 11 4 11 12 7
Mallinckrodt (Stratatech) 9 5 4 6 5 2 NA
Thermo Fisher Scientific 49 35 30 26 15 11 35
Total Job Openings 1,061 763 501 511 474 413 451

A significant number of local biotechnology companies like CatalentCellular DynamicsEurofinsExact SciencesIlluminaMallinckrodtPPD and Promega have opened or broken ground on new and expanded facilities to meet extraordinary demand for their products [1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14]. Conversations with area biotech leaders suggest these growing companies are prepared to open hundreds of additional new positions as new facilities and expanded operations come online.

There has never been a more favorable hiring climate for those interested in working in Madison’s biotechnology industry. As local biotech companies continue their rapid growth, they are under increasing pressure and competition to locate, hire and retain talented workers with the cross-functional skills and specialized knowledge highly sought after in the biotech industry.

Biotechnology companies sometimes offer tuition reimbursement to attract and retain talented employees.

Companies are finding and keeping their most talented employees by supporting their career development through education in advanced degree programs likes the M.S. in Biotechnology from the University of Wisconsin—Madison. Consistent with this corporate strategy, most students in the M.S. in Biotechnology Program working full time receive tuition support from their employer for at least a portion of their tuition, if not the total cost.

Since the degree was launched in 2002, biotechnology companies have recognized the value of the program’s industry-focused curriculum. Corporate leaders with employees in the program praise students who can apply functional knowledge of business, legal and regulatory frameworks toward their company’s push to development, manufacture and commercialize new biotechnology products.

How Does This Effect You?

If you are biotechnology professionals in Madison:

Apply to the M.S. in Biotechnology program to help accelerate your career potential. Most M.S. in Biotechnology graduate students work full time while obtaining their degree. Reach out to your mentors and discuss how your goals fit within your company’s strategic plans. Work with them to gain company support so that you can achieve educational and employment success. Don’t forget to use the opportunity to learn about your employer’s tuition reimbursement policy.

If you are considering relocating to Madison:

The biotechnology community is always looking for new talent. Qualified applicants to the M.S. in Biotechnology program are very likely to find full-time employment within the local biotechnology community. Contact the M.S. in Biotechnology Program to help you determine which local biotech companies best match for your background and experience and present you with the most favorable opportunities for hire.

If you have an interest in biotechnology:

You’ve probably already thought about working in the biotechnology industry. Now is the ideal time to make that career leap! Get invaluable work experience and consider applying to the M.S. in Biotechnology graduate degree program. Contact the M.S. in Biotechnology Program to determine how you can get started working in the fast-paced, rapidly expanding field of biotechnology.

Apply now for Fall 2022.

All economic indicators suggest that 2021-22 will be another record-setting year for Madison’s regional biotechnology industry. Make this the year you grow your career in the field that is transforming the world and apply for Fall 2022 admission to the Master of Science in Biotechnology Program at the University of Wisconsin—Madison.

Cited Press Releases

[1] “PPD boosts biopharma in the Madison area,” Wisconsin State Journal, June 2, 2018.

[2] “Promega Corp.’s $190 million R&D center to be architecturally unique,” Wisconsin State Journal, July 15, 2018.

[3] “New $60 million corporate headquarters is proposed for Exact Sciences,” Wisconsin State Journal, June 16, 2018.

[4] “Here’s why Exact Sceinces soared 42.8% in January,” Feb 4, 2019. The Motley Fool.

[5] “Illumina expands its Madison production facility,” Wisconsin State Journal, June 11, 2015.

[6] “Illumina construction,” University Research Park, May 4, 2017.

[7] “Promega’s newest building, the Kepler Center, opens for business,” Wisconsin State Journal, November 29, 2015.

[8] “Catalent Biologics to expand Madison operations, add 100 jobs,” Wisconsin State Journal, October 22, 2016.

[9] “Stem cell company Cellular Dynamics expands and relocates new headquarters,” BioSpace.com, January 3, 2017.

[10] “After buying Covance food testing unit, Eurofins plans to build $35M complex near Dane County Regional Airport,” Wisconsin State Journal, November 18, 2018.

[11] “Exact Sciences $.28 biollion acquisition causes ripples in medicine, biotech, and finance alike,” The Capital Times, July 31, 2019.

[12] “FDA Decision Expands Market for Exact Sciences’ Cologuard Test,” Xconomy.com, September 23, 2019.

[13] “Fujifilm Cellular Dynamics prepares to open ‘cleanroom’ facility,” Wisconsin State Journal, September 15, 2019.

[14] “Stratatech hopes $28 million expansion propels growth in skin-tissue business,” Wisconsin State Journal, April 29, 2019.