What does a Research Scientist do?

Research scientists are responsible for the investigation of deficits within scientific knowledge. They devise, formulate, and execute investigative protocols and disseminate their insights through the publishing of findings in authoritative publications and documents. They are responsible for securing sufficient and pertinent funding to supplement finances, and they conduct in-house research and presentations; they spearhead data collection and interpretation and work as co-chairs for joint research undertakings.

Research scientists conduct laboratory-based experiments and trials and work in many fields including medicine, political science, computer science, and environmental science. They plan and conduct experiments that become topics of research papers and reports. They collect samples and carry out other types of field research and monitor their experiments by recording and analyzing the data. They demonstrate their procedures and remain current on new developments in scientific research. Research scientists will need a master’s degree in their field of research and to have been previously published in authoritative outlets.

What responsibilities are common for Research Scientist jobs?
  • Initiate, execute and manage validations for new and established methods.
  • Help manage external teams in development of product formulations.
  • Author and review batch records, protocols, data, and reports.
  • Partner with team to review production costs, quality, and demand.
  • Help guide new and junior team members within the lab.
  • Summarize all project work in a formal end report.
  • Communicate effectively to staff and key partners and stakeholders.
  • Actively participate in a culture of safe work practices.
  • Review data, data notebooks, logbooks, and reports to ensure highest quality.
  • Provide thought leadership and technical support on client projects.
  • Design and execute key experiments to achieve program goals.
  • Able to oversee and participate in a large project portfolio.
  • Keep department supervisor and/or manager updated on all issues.
  • Develop test cases and code to validate new features.
What are the typical qualifications for Research Scientist jobs?
  • Bachelor's or Graduate's Degree in business, business administration, computer science, engineering, or optical engineering or relevant experience.
  • Pays strict attention to detail and is comfortable with critical thinking and decision making.
  • Experience with Microsoft PowerPoint, Excel, and Word.
  • Use leadership skills to consult, collaborate, and problem solve.
  • Familiar with natural language processing, deep learning, and able to lead clinical decision support needs.
  • Easily applies statistics to work on a daily basis.
  • Able to utilize skills in experimental design.
EducationGraduate Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.7 ★
Salary Range--
Career Opportunity
3.5 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

Research Scientist Salaries

Average Base Pay

$77,875 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
See More Insights
$48K
Median: $78K
$126K
See More Insights
Glassdoor Estimated Salary

Research Scientist Career Path

Learn how to become a Research Scientist, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Research Scientist
$77,875/yr
Senior Research Scientist
$121,162/yr
Research Scientist

Years of Experience Distribution

0 - 1
17%
2 - 4
47%
5 - 7
21%
8+
15%
Not including years spent in education and/or training

Research Scientist Insights

Read what Research Scientist professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Safe Engineering Services & technologiesSafe Engineering Services & technologies
Research Scientist
Oct 14, 2021

“Consistent and good sized raises offered so I can focus on the work and that work is rewarded.”

LeidosLeidos
Research Scientist
Nov 23, 2022

“The long term goals are limitless and anyone could find a great career path here.”

TerraconTerracon
Assistant Scientist
Apr 16, 2021

“The people I work with everyday are great and make what I'm doing better.”

Rules-Based MedicineRules-Based Medicine
Associate Scientist
Jun 28, 2022

“Lower levels are welcoming and friendly but the actions of upper reminds you profit comes first at the end of the day.”

Eurofins ScientificEurofins Scientific
Scientist
Feb 13, 2021

“Some of the people are really good and amazing to work with and they are the only thing that really makes it manageable.”

Fate TherapeuticsFate Therapeutics
Research Scientist
Sept 5, 2022

“level managers (starting from Principle scientist and goes all the way to the top).”

Randox LaboratoriesRandox Laboratories
Scientist
Aug 23, 2020

“It was impossible to have any sort of life outside randox because of these ridiculous hours and poor organisation.”

LGCLGC
Scientist
Oct 1, 2020

“The people you work WITH there are great people and some of the best people i have ever met.”

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Research Scientist Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of research scientists

A typical day for a Research scientists involves spending the majority of the work day developing and administering experiments. In addition to monitoring experiments, they record and analyze data, write reports and research papers, collect samples, and complete various types of field work. They are often responsible for supervising junior staff members.

Research science is a great career for those looking to improve the world, or even just their field of interest. The fields available for research science are numerous, so there is potential to have a niche job in this career, tailored to your skills and interests.

Yes, successful research scientists get paid well. The average base pay of a research scientist in the United States is $77,875 per year, but their salary can vary depending on location and experience. Highly experienced data analysts can make up to $125,999 per year.

Working as a research scientist can be challenging at time as they occasionally have to work outside of the typical 9-5 work day when conducting research experiments that need to be monitored. This can include longer hours during the work week or weekends.

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Research Scientist jobs