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Press Release

Groundbreaking Partnership Solves CRA Shortage Conundrum

Posted on: 27 Feb 18
Groundbreaking Partnership Solves CRA Shortage Conundrum

Maidenhead and London, United Kingdom, and Vienna, Austria, 1st March 2018 – A radical, new approach to supplying entry-level Clinical Research Associates (CRAs) has been announced today. As a direct response to the shortage of CRAs the IN AWE partnership was formed; a collaboration between VIARES, SEC Recruitment and IAOCR, providing a practical solution to the industry’s challenges.

IN AWE offers a comprehensive early talent service that selects candidates, develops CRA competencies, independently assesses their ability to demonstrate the competencies in the workplace and places the entry-level qualified CRAs with employers.  The groundbreaking, quality assured service is tailored to the needs of each employer – ensuring timely delivery of staff that are fit-for-purpose; directly addressing the industry’s shortage. In Europe and the US the industry needs about 10,000 to 20,000 new CRAs per year to manage the growing business.

Quote 1: VIARES re. the current situation “This initiative is set to make a significant reduction in the shortage of CRAs in the industry. In an attempt to meet the challenges of performing clinical trials effectively and efficiently sponsor companies demand that CRAs have a minimum number of years’ prior experience. They want to ensure access to patients and data quality as they manage the relations to the investigators and manage the data intake. This typically rules out someone with less than two years’ experience which isn’t a viable option in the growing industry. This creates a significant issue with growing the number of CRAs needed,” summarized Dietmar Eglhofer, co-founder of VIARES.

The training will cover all the knowledge, skills and behaviors that cover what it means to be a fully competent CRA. The program is accompanied by an accreditation process which assesses the competence of the individual, so providing an assurance for future employers. The final component will be to place the newly qualified CRAs into roles combining the industry’s needs and individual’s expertise.

Quote 2: SEC re. the real-world value of the program: “Our daily conversations with clients are centred around experience because they believe that experienced individuals will do the best job possible. However, this is causing an entry-level deficit and genuinely, skilled and talented individuals are struggling to get that initial job role” explained Stuart Britton, SEC’s CEO. “This service will provide the understanding and experience of being a CRA, with an accreditation and, ultimately, a job offer. It responds directly to the industry’s needs.”

Quote 3: IAOCR re. The future: Launching IN AWE is very exciting for IAOCR because each organization is aligned in their thinking about what the future of clinical research needs. The growing understanding and demand for competence is changing the shape and future of the clinical research workforce,” explained Jacqueline Johnson North, CEO and co-founder of IAOCR. “IN AWE is responding to the need for competent staff. Using length of service as a selection criteria is outdated, risky and not sustainable. The IN AWE service provides a robust and innovative approach to staffing which also brings exciting opportunities for talented people wanting to commence a clinical research career.  The exciting thing is the speed with which we can begin to implement the IN AWE academy; change is happening now.”

IN AWE is a partnership between three industry-specific companies directly addressing the shortage of CRAs. VIARES, SEC Recruitment, and IAOCR – the accrediting organization for the international clinical research industry.

For more information on VIARES’ services, please contact by phone +43 664 866 1055 or email at

For more information about SEC you can get in contact on +44 (0) 020 7255 6600 or email Visit the website at for more information.

To learn more about IAOCR please visit or call:

  • International: +44 1628 784906
  • US Toll Free: +1 855 407 6679
  • UK: 01628 784906

For more information:

Editor's Details

Chris Howard
SEC Recruitment
020 7255 6600

Last updated on: 27/02/2018

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