Hiring Life Sciences talent successfully

CymaBay is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and providing access to innovative therapies for patients with liver and other chronic diseases with high unmet medical need.

The Challenge:

CymaBay was initially working with a Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) partner but due to their lack of expertise in Life Sciences recruitment, they were not able to perform at the level CymaBay needed to achieve their hiring goals.

Their main challenges were:

  1. Roles not being filled
  2. Time-to-fill
  3. Absence of data, which lead to very little baselines to benchmark against
  4. Provider lacking industry expertise

Poised for tremendous growth as they prepared for commercial launch, they ascertained their need for a new RPO partner that could meet these needs.  

The Solution:

CymaBay partnered with Skills Alliance to deliver a Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) solution that brought industry focus, tenured recruiters with knowledge and expertise to fill niche roles, and market insights to deliver data-driven recruitment and reporting mechanisms.   

RPO Program Design

Candidate sourcing

  • Passive direct sourcing, including deep internal network
  • Referral and organic candidate management
  • All candidate outreach, engagement, screening and qualifying

Market Insights

  • Market research on specific candidate segments
  • Compensation analysis
  • Job description advisement

Recruitment Coordination

  • Internal scheduling function across all hiring
  • Manage CDA execution process

Program Management

  • Stakeholder management
  • Candidate management
  • Applicant Tracking System (ATS) management
  • Coordination of all program resources and hiring efforts


On commencing the partnership with Skills Alliance there weren’t any baselines or reporting. Skills Alliance implemented reporting mechanisms to showcase recruitment efforts and track success.

The partnership, prior to the acquisition, had realized:

  • 46 Requisitions
  • 32 Offers (11 Referrals) 
  • Avg 10 Days from intake to CV submission
  • Avg 49 Days from intake to offer acceptance
  • 153 total pre-qualified CVs Submitted
  • Average ratio of 8 CV’s> 4 Interviews>2 Offers>1 Hire

HR stakeholder from CymaBay commented, “There were many benefits of working with Skills Alliance as our RPO partner, given we did not have an in-house recruiting team to manage the full cycle of recruiting. The SA recruiting team was knowledgeable of our roles and worked closely with hiring managers to understand the needs of the role and ensure they were identifying and screening candidates that would be successful in our environment. SA tracked all recruiting activities and provided data and metrics to our team in order to identify opportunities and successes throughout the partnership. Their team was always communicative and kept us in the know about potential issues or concerns. They excelled in helping efficiently manage the interview phone screens, working quickly to schedule all rounds of interviews amidst and made what seemed logistically impossible, seamless for us.”

Insights page
It has come to our attention that clients and candidates are being contacted by individuals fraudulently impersonating Skills Alliance representatives. If you receive a suspicious message, please DO NOT click on any links or attachments. We will never ask for bank/card details through phone calls. Our recruitment services are provided to candidates free of charge. If you are asked to make a payment, it is NOT a legitimate request from Skills Alliance. If you receive any communication claiming to be from Skills Alliance and are uncertain about its authenticity, please contact us directly.