UNC-Chapel Hill Joins ACRP’s Clinical Research ‘Workforce Innovation Steering Committee’

The Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) welcomes The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as the latest member of the ‘Workforce Innovation Steering Committee’ (WISC).

The WISC is a collaborative partnership of private and public stakeholders working to improve clinical trial quality and respond to changes impacting the workforce by providing oversight for needed standardization activities. The partnership has led several standardization initiatives in clinical research, including publication of competency guidelines for clinical trial monitors and clinical research coordinators.

“We are excited to welcome UNC-Chapel Hill to the WISC,” says Jim Kremidas, ACRP Executive Director. “Industry’s current approach to workforce planning, development, and assessment is not sustainable and is not resulting in improved clinical trial outcomes. By focusing on the talent pool today, ACRP is working collaboratively to ensure the stability of the clinical research enterprise in the future and the continued development of new drugs, devices, and therapies.”

“The field of clinical research is continually evolving and research personnel are tasked with a wide variety of responsibilities, many of which are pivotal to the success of the research project,” says Laura Viera, Director of Clinical Research Operations at the North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute. “We know that research personnel need and want more clear guidance and better support. We are thrilled to partner with ACRP and other research-focused organizations across the country to work towards bolstering the clinical research workforce and improving the quality of clinical research projects.”

Dr. John Buse, Director of the North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute and Executive Associate Dean for Clinical Research at UNC adds, “In my 25 years working in clinical trials, it has been a delight to have dozens of people start from zero experience and little background and go on to careers as coordinators, project managers, administrators, regulatory specialists, and vice presidents of companies. The continued professional growth of our employees is great for our research unit, for our University and for the advancement of science.”

Workforce planning, development, and assessment is imperative to the existence, quality, and efficiency of clinical research. Yet, it has been largely overlooked as industry focuses instead on the important initiatives to improve quality and efficiency through process and technology innovation.

“By focusing on workforce initiatives, we hope to collaboratively equip industry with standardized measures of competence that will help reduce variance in workforce performance and assist in growing the clinical research workforce of tomorrow,” adds Kremidas.

If you are interested in joining the WISC and contributing to ACRP’s workforce innovation initiatives, please contact Beth Harper, ACRP Workforce Innovation Officer, at beth.harper@acrpnet.org.