Executive Director, Vaccines Communications

Rahway, NJ

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In April 2020, Merck announced plans to consolidate our New Jersey campuses into a single New Jersey headquarters location in Rahway, NJ by 2023. Therefore, this role will be temporarily based in a different NJ location and exact timing of the departmental move to Rahway, NJ will be communicated at a future date.

The Executive Director, Vaccines Communications is responsible for leading, developing and executing U.S. and global communications strategies and programs that support of our Company's leading vaccines portfolio and pipeline. This individual is required to develop and maintain relationships with government, policy and third-party organizations at local and national levels and to collaborate with these groups and other partners to promote and protect the discovery of innovative vaccines while improving and protecting patient access to care.

Reporting to the Vice President Human Health Communications, the Executive Director, Vaccines Communications is responsible for the development of strategic communications that showcase the strength of the Company’s vaccines portfolio and pipeline, including during critical development, distribution and regulatory milestones, in a manner that reflects the Company’s purpose and upholds its reputation.

This leader will serve on Human Health Communications Leadership Team and cross-functional Vaccines Leadership teams and manage a small team of employees, as well as be the primary point of contact for collaboration with contractors and agency partners. This individual will also serve as a company spokesperson and represents the Company to external stakeholders, including third-party groups and news media.

This role is based in Rahway, NJ.

Primary Responsibilities:                                                            

  • Direct the creation of compelling multi-channel internal and external communications programs to advance the business and position the company as a trusted partner and leader in global health
  • Direct and manage all communications across the vaccine portfolio and pipeline including regulatory approvals, policy recommendations, publications of scientific data and other business and reputation milestones
  • Maintain relationships with key governments, policy and third-party organizations
  • Develop compelling communications material and collateral to support the vaccine pipeline and portfolio
  • Ensures all communications materials are consistent with U.S. and international regulations and internal policies and are executed in a strategic, consistent and measurable manner
  • Provide advice and message training to the vaccine leadership team ahead of key milestones
  • Collaborate with Investor Relations, Media Relations and others to ensure consistent communications to stakeholders
  • Measure success for vaccines communications initiatives, and recommend steps for improvement


  • Bachelor's Degree

Required Experience and Skills:

  • Minimum 10 years’ experience in communications and corporate affairs; healthcare and pharmaceutical experience at global public traded company preferred
  • Experience working in a highly regulated environment
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills across mediums/channels (e.g., digital, print, digital, video, presentation) and U.S. and international audiences
  • Highly developed advocacy, analytical and problem-solving skills with strong ability to develop new, innovative ways to drive communications in a rapidly changing environment
  • Strong writing, editing and communications skills, including the ability to speak to key internal audiences
  • Strong project management skills with proven success managing major projects and overarching company initiatives
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to work collaboratively and bridge the gap between junior and senior employees
  • Experience working with senior executives

Our Human Health Division maintains a “patient first, profits later” ideology. The organization is comprised of sales, marketing, market access, digital analytics and commercial professionals who are passionate about their role in bringing our medicines to our customers worldwide. 

Who we are …

We are known as Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, New Jersey, USA in the United States and Canada and MSD everywhere else. For more than a century, we have been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world's most challenging diseases. Today, our company continues to be at the forefront of research to deliver innovative health solutions and advance the prevention and treatment of diseases that threaten people and animals around the world.

What we look for …

Imagine getting up in the morning for a job as important as helping to save and improve lives around the world. Here, you have that opportunity. You can put your empathy, creativity, digital mastery, or scientific genius to work in collaboration with a diverse group of colleagues who pursue and bring hope to countless people who are battling some of the most challenging diseases of our time. Our team is constantly evolving, so if you are among the intellectually curious, join us—and start making your impact today.


In accordance with Managers' Policy - Job Posting and Employee Placement, all employees subject to this policy are required to have a minimum of twelve (12) months of service in current position prior to applying for open positions.

If you have been offered a separation benefits package, but have not yet reached your separation date and are offered a position within the salary and geographical parameters as set forth in the Summary Plan Description (SPD) of your separation package, then you are no longer eligible for your separation benefits package. To discuss in more detail, please contact your HRBP or Talent Acquisition Advisor.

Employees working in roles that the Company determines require routine collaboration with external stakeholders, such as customer-facing commercial, or research-based roles, will be expected to comply not only with Company policy but also with policies established by such external stakeholders (for example, a requirement to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to access a facility or meet with stakeholders). Please understand that, as permitted by applicable law, if you have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 and an essential function of your job is to call on external stakeholders who require vaccination to enter their premises or engage in face-to-face meetings, then your employment may pose an undue burden to business operations, in which case you may not be offered employment, or your employment could be terminated. Please also note that, where permitted by applicable law, the Company reserves the right to require COVID-19 vaccinations for positions, such as in Global Employee Health, where the Company determines in its discretion that the nature of the role presents an increased risk of disease transmission.

US and Puerto Rico Residents Only:

Our company is committed to inclusion, ensuring that candidates can engage in a hiring process that exhibits their true capabilities. Please click here if you need an accommodation during the application or hiring process.

For more information about personal rights under Equal Employment Opportunity, visit:

We are proud to be a company that embraces the value of bringing diverse, talented, and committed people together. The fastest way to breakthrough innovation is when diverse ideas come together in an inclusive environment. We encourage our colleagues to respectfully challenge one another’s thinking and approach problems collectively. We are an equal opportunity employer, committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace.

Under New York City, Colorado State, Washington State, and California State law, the Company is required to provide a reasonable estimate of the salary range for this job. Final determinations with respect to salary will take into account a number of factors, which may include, but not be limited to the primary work location and the chosen candidate’s relevant skills, experience, and education.

Expected salary range:

$213,280.00 - $335,700.00

Available benefits include bonus eligibility, health care and other insurance benefits (for employee and family), retirement benefits, paid holidays, vacation, and sick days.  For Washington State Jobs, a summary of benefits is listed here.

Learn more about your rights, including under California, Colorado and other US State Acts

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully 

Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme LLC, Rahway, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company. No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails. 

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