Presentation of an IFE-employee

Name: Kari Jyssum

Kari-J-1Kari Jyssum and the project group reporting on progress for the project’s clients. Her work comprises the management of different projects related to production of the radioactive drug Xofigo.

Position: Project Manager/Scientist in the R&D department at the Isotope Laboratories.

Education: Master of Science in biotechnology, from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)

Nationality: Norwegian

Age: 27 years.

How long have you worked at IFE? - Since October 2013.

How did you get this position? – I started in a temporary position via the recruiting company Kelly Scientific. After a while a job opening was announced in my department, which I applied for and got.

Did you know about IFE before you started working here? – No, actually not.

What are the main tasks in your job? – My work is mainly managing different projects related to our production of a radioactive medicine.   I do the planning and set up projects in collaboration with our clients and follow up internal project teams. There are also a fair amount of meetings reporting status and discussing different solutions as the projects proceed.

Are you involved in any specific projects at the moment? – There are always a number of parallel projects going on, and right now I am involved in five different ones. Some are time limited, and are to be concluded by a certain date, while others are more indefinite, ongoing processes. For example we are establishing a new inventory for our products with a specific time limit. But we are also continuously getting new countries in our client list, something which requires implementation into our client systems. Many details are country-specific for a product, for example language in the product leaflet, although the product itself is the same!

Who are the clients or contractors? – The pharmaceutical company Bayer is currently our biggest client, but we also work with smaller biotech companies and other IFE-sections.

What does a typical day at work look like? – When I first arrive I log on to my mail and go through these. Typically there are some emails that I can answer right away, so these I like to get out of the way immediately. After that I usually concentrate on a project and look at the status and progress, send emails and try to close some of the actions in the project. I also work a great deal with documentation and risk assessments. Typically there are one to two meetings, either in the project groups or related to other internal tasks. I often write the abstract afterwards. Most of my work takes place in the office. That may be a bit unusual for a biotechnologist.

What is your department’s working environment like? – It is a good working environment. I have many talented colleagues that I can easily consult with if something is unclear. They are professionally strong, and we have a lot of contact between departments, so there is a great deal of multidisciplinary collaboration.

Which skills are important in your job? – You must be structured, and like to work with deadlines. One cannot be afraid to delegate. It is also important to be able to collaborate with different kinds of people, and being able to deal with people in a straightforward manner. I also believe you benefit from being curious, and not being afraid to ask critical questions to established processes.

Is there something you find especially positive, working at IFE? – There is a lot of variation in the different projects, I like that well. I also find it fun to be in a sector that is in growth, and where we are dependent on each other to perform well.

Are you engaged in any of the social offers at IFE? – I am part of the blood group. The group travels together to Lillestrøm and donate blood. It’s a happy bunch, and it gives a little break for a good cause. We are also a small team working out together every Tuesday. It does something to you as a group when you are active together.

What do you do in your spare time? – I work out and I am together with my cohabitant and friends.

Do you have a tip you want to share with someone who is looking for a job opportunity at IFE? – Keep on browsing through these webpages, and find your field of interest. Send an email to the contact persons. If you do not get a reply straight away, try again next week. There is often a lot to do at IFE, so the people you are contacting may need a reminder that you are interested. You showing your interest can also create a need for your services!


Jotunheimen the summer of 2014. Kari Jyssum is fond of hiking in the mountains. (Photo:private)

More about working at IFE here.

2015-02-27  Mette Johnsrud. Translation by Mona L. Ramstad