Making medicines that change people’s lives is what AstraZeneca does, and so could you

AZ logo

We’re a full-service biopharmaceutical company that uses technology at every stage – from pipeline to production. Working throughout the medicine life cycle, we work across everything from drug discovery right through to drug delivery. This dedication to the entire process helps us ensure our patients receive the right medicine that improves their lives and makes way for a better future.

We make medicines that change people’s lives. We explore new areas of medical science to find even better ways of treating illnesses. We’re passionate about our goal and, together, we take a step closer to finding new medicines every day.

We are more than 65,000 people in over 100 countries. Our aim is simple: to positively impact lives, together. Using the power of science and innovation, our people improve the impact medicine has on patients. Together, we explore the limitless world of science through our impressive product pipeline and we take our understanding of many therapeutic areas to a whole new level by seeking new treatments.

Graduate schemes 

  • Pharmaceutical technology and development graduate programme (UK and Sweden)
  • Data science & AI graduate programme (US, UK and Sweden)
  • Operations global graduate associates programme (worldwide)
  • R&D graduate programme (US, UK and Sweden)
  • Technology leadership graduate programme (US, UK, Sweden and China)

What we look for 

We welcome bright, motivated and highly driven individuals with a real passion for drug development. Innovative thinkers with enthusiasm and energy to match their scientific expertise. Ability to work as part of a collaborative team that focuses unequivocally on patient needs and strong critical thinking, stakeholder management, planning, organisational and time management skills.

Training and development

You’ll be encouraged to make a real contribution to our projects from day one. All technical training is provided in-house which gets you off to the best start. Graduates are enrolled in our global graduate development programme, where we focus on the softer skills. Each is aligned to a mentor, a full-time member of the organisation who provides support for the duration of the programme. We offer all graduates generous relocation support, if required, including language lessons for those relocating to Sweden.

Typical starting salaries

Competitive starting salaries

Desired degree disciplines/experience

Chemists who hold a first degree with at least a 2:1 (or equivalent), or a master’s.

Apprenticeship programmes

There are many career paths and programmes available – whatever your level of study – in locations across the UK. Business areas we recruit into include laboratory science; IT; manufacturing; engineering; supply chain and many more, where we offer a number of apprenticeship opportunities each year from Level 3 to Level 7 master’s degree.

At AstraZeneca (AZ), we know that our continued success depends on our ability to attract and retain motivated and passionate apprentices.

Laboratory scientist apprenticeship programme

The programme sits within our Global Operations function, which brings innovation from our science labs to patients, touching every part of the business. We support teams every step of the way and help turn our most ambitious goals into reality. Global Operations provides a vital platform for our business and plays a key role in the development, manufacturing, testing and delivery of our medicines to our patients. Upon completion of the programme, you will be recognised by the relevant professional bodies at registered scientist (RSci) level, for which there is a requirement that the scientist will participate in subsequent continuing professional development on completion of the apprenticeship.

Laboratory scientist (chemistry)

These four-year degree apprenticeships are laboratory-based with a practical emphasis on Chemical Sciences. Working within AZ’s pharmaceutical technology and development unit, your role will be formulating or testing life-saving medicines.

Entry Requirements

  • Five GCSEs (or equivalent) grades 9-4 including maths, English and science.
  • To have achieved (or predicted to achieve) a minimum of 112 Ucas points on the 2018 tariff from your top 3 A-levels (or equivalent).
  • To have achieved or (predicted to achieve) A-level (or equivalent) in chemistry at Grade B or above. Candidates with a Btec Level 3 extended diploma in a scientific discipline will be considered but must provide additional details of the units studied on the course as part of their application.

Why work for us 

Improving health is one of the toughest challenges facing the world today. As a global biopharmaceutical company, AstraZeneca has a key contribution to make by providing innovative medicines for some of the world’s most serious diseases. We know that if we are to deliver medicines that people really need and value, we cannot do it alone. We work closely with all our stakeholders to understand their challenges and how we can combine forces to drive continued progress in healthcare. We are committed to acting with integrity and high ethical standards in everything we do and our goal is always to improve health for patients and bring benefit for our stakeholders, our business and society.


Macclesfield and Cambridge, UK
Boston, US
Gothenburg, Sweden

How to apply

All positions are posted on our careers website

Open applications and closing date

Apply for graduate schemes at varying dates throughout autumn and apprenticeships from September. 


1 Francis Crick Avenue
Cambridge Biomedical Campus
Cambridge CB2 0AA
+44 (0)20 3749 5000