Senior Director, Project Planning & Management Department/Regional Project Lead

Category:  Clinical Development and Medical

Chiyoda, Tokyo, JP


About the role:

Regional Project Lead (RPL) acts as the leader of Projects (or Products) to be developed in Region Japan. RPL has responsibility for planning and execution of the product development including budget/resource control and risk management within the agreed and defined project scope in Japan in accordance with Novo Nordisk project management procedures.

Director plays an important role in efficient communication among RPLs and with NN global as a representative of RPLs.


Major Job Responsibilities & Accountabilities


1: Managing PPM department (40%)

Senior Director for PPM is responsible to manage PPM dept as a head of PPM. RPL, CS (Clinical Scientist), safety management team and CMM (Clinical Medical Manager) are belonging to PPM dept.

RPL is responsible for planning, management and execution of the product development in the life cycle from project start in Japan to end within the scope of the project and PDP (Product Development Plan):

  • planning of the product development and fully accountable to GPT (Global Project Team) and DRC (Development Review Committee) for maximizing the value of projects
  • driving the establishment, evaluation and recommendation of strategic development options to maximise the project value. (The recommendations to GPT and DRC on strategies, plans and options are given after cross-organisational challenge.)
  • managing and leading the preparation and update of key deliverables, milestones and the relevant plans
  • The value maximization is to be implemented within the   

target and resource framework as decided by EMT (Executive Management Team)/ Global management decision

  • leading the Core Teams and Project Teams with representatives from relevant functions and disciplines in Japan
  • developing an effective, professional, motivated and dedicated Project Teams capable of delivering on project targets
  • supporting performance appraisal of individual team members, including assurance that team members’ annual goals/targets are linked to project goals. Provides performance appraisal input to line management
  • leading execution and reporting - together with the team – of tasks needed to meet Key Deliverables and Project Milestones and being accountable to GPT and DRC for the progress of the project
  • managing and driving cost-efficiently the development of the project in accordance with the NNPL Project Operation Manual
  • delivering product profiles that enable fulfilment of the Global management visions/targets
  • evaluating and deciding - together with team - on cost and time for each task
  • challenging - together with the team - the line function on speed, quality and cost for project tasks
  • updating monthly project’s progress and managing project resources as per existing guidelines
  • planning and holding “lesson learned” type meetings after passing important milestones in order to transfer experience and knowledge to the future projects


The above mentioned activities tasks include:  for example,

  • Preparation of project goals incl. KDs, project events, project-level trainings, etc for the starting or next operating year
  • Inputting relevant and requested information for Region Japan-level project portfolio meetings to enable Region Japan upper management to decide and update project priority periodically
  • Planning, preparation and holding regulatory authority meetings such as PMDA consultation meetings
  • Planning, preparation and execution of regulatory filings and management of queries from regulatory authorities
  • Providing input for PDP preparation at PDP forum


RPL also acts as the project communicator throughout the organisation, creating both knowledge about and enthusiasm for the project, as well as representing Region Japan/NNPL to GPT and other regions in terms of responsible projects.

RPL is also responsible, in agreement with the GPT and DRC, for the internal and external project communication strategies and implementation within Projects in NNPL.


2: Support to Marketing/Sales activities (30%)

RPL provides support to Marketing or Sales Division on demand, based on the requests from Head of Region Japan CMR, such as sales related KOL visits, detailed explanation of launched products to institutions, participation into sales


3: Responsibilities of Director/RPL (30%)

Director/RPL attends various meetings as a representative of NNPL CMR, and performs activities identified and agreed in collaboration with other RPLs and relevant members in order to communicate and facilitate global strategies in CMR.

Director/RPL also helps project team resource cultivation and competency development in RPLs.


Key qualifications:

General background

  • At least science or business graduates with substantial medical, scientific and general business experience, the majority of which from the pharmaceutical or related industry or from the medical academic field
  • Minimum 5 years in pharmaceutical development experience in the industry (or 3 years as a medical doctor)

Medicinal product (drug or device) development understanding

  • Knowledge on the drug development and life cycle management process, preferably from direct participation in project teams through substantial parts of the product development life cycle or alternatively from relevant high level academic or hospital positions

Pharmaceutical business understanding

  • Knowledge on the marketing of pharmaceuticals, marketing experience or alternatively from relevant post-graduate educational programs or consultancy tasks.

Management experience

  • Proven pharmaceutical or health care line management or cross-functional and cross-national management experience, e.g. project leadership from large multi-functional and multinational teams

International experience

  • International assignment or experience from working in the resolution of international issues/partnerships


Strong experience with cross-functional teamwork

Business planning or Project Management skills – knowledge/experience with project planning tools and processes. PMP or comparable certificate holder is preferred

Excellent communication skills from either top level academic or management presentations

Advanced English skill

We commit to an inclusive recruitment process and equality of opportunity for all our job applicants. 


At Novo Nordisk we recognize that it is no longer good enough to aspire to be the best company in the world. We need to aspire to be the best company for the world and we know that this is only possible with talented employees with diverse perspectives, backgrounds and cultures. We are therefore committed to creating an inclusive culture that celebrates the diversity of our employees, the patients we serve and communities we operate in. Together, we’re life changing.