Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Apprenticeship Job Profile


PPD is proud to be the first organization in the U.S. to offer a registered apprenticeship program through the Department of Labor for clinical research associates (CRAs). Our apprenticeship provides training through PPD’s award-winning CRA academy and on-the-job learning. Over the course of 12 months, apprentices will gain exposure to three clinical roles, which allows apprentices to build on what they’ve learned and gradually integrate into the contract research industry. PPD’s initiative will begin in North Carolina, Texas and California in 2017.

This in-depth program was created in part to provide a pathway for military veterans and military service members with medical backgrounds who are transitioning to the civilian workforce into clinical research. We welcome and encourage veterans, Reserve and National Guard members to explore this opportunity and consider a path in clinical research.

What is a clinical research associate?

CRAs play a vital role in meeting our commitment to our clients. They are responsible for:

  • Reviewing study case report forms (CRFs) completed by the investigative sites where clinical trials take place, and verifying entries by validating accurate source documentation to support CRF entries

  • Documenting site visits and issues in reports and follow-up letters to the site

  • Facilitating effective communications among investigative sites, the client and PPD

  • Responding to company, client and federal regulatory requirements/audits

  • Contributing to the project team by mentoring new members, assisting in preparation of project communications and tools, and sharing ideas and suggestions with team members

Why become a CRA apprentice?

  • Fast track your career. PPD’s apprenticeship program allows participants to learn the industry and their role in only 12 months

  • Join a global and innovative company within a growing industry

  • Embark on a challenging and rewarding career with unlimited capacity for upward mobility

  • Make an impact. PPD works hard every day to support our purpose — to improve health. At PPD we do that by helping our clients deliver life-changing therapies

  • Learn firsthand each part of the clinical team to better understand clinical trials

  • Join a diverse and inclusive culture with a focus on innovation and creativity

After completing CRA apprenticeship enjoy the benefits of working as a CRA with PPD

  • A comprehensive benefits package, as well as in-house wellness programs that support PPD’s commitment to the health and well-being of employees

  • Training and development doesn’t stop with the apprenticeship program. PPD offers numerous opportunities and has been recognized in the Training Top 125 list of businesses excelling in employee development

  • Flexibility to work in a remote-based capacity for most CRA positions

  • Career advancement opportunities to move into home-based manager positions, clinical team manager (oversee the clinical monitoring portion of the study, no direct reports) or CRA manager (supervises a team of direct-report CRAs)

  • Smartphone provided by PPD (or the ability to use your own iPhone or Android smartphone for business and personal use with a $100 monthly reimbursement)

  • Up to a $50 a month reimbursement for home-office internet

  • Corporate American Express card

  • Frequent flyer miles retained by the employee for personal use. After the first six months of employment, an airline club membership is provided to those that travel at least monthly

  • A travel program that rewards CRAs with additional days of time off or cash