Innovation Director

Location: Chicago, IL, USA



Workplace Type: Remote

Reporting directly to the Chief Transformation Officer, the Innovation Director is responsible for leading innovation across the Advanced Group of companies, with a primary emphasis on Advanced Clinical, our multi-national CRO (Contract Research Organization).  Our mission is to run a lean and impactful customer-driven innovation practice that unlocks long-term strategic value for our customers. As this is a brand-new role and function at Advanced, you will first establish an innovation framework, then partner with internal business partners to implement the framework in 2024. You will also be responsible for leading the exploration and management of Advanced Clinical innovation activities.


  • Establish and manage innovation framework aligned to customer value, idea funnel, KPIs, funding structure and governance
  • Manage portfolio of ideas across all stages of maturity
  • Create customer-facing materials including pitches and project-specific updates
  • Work with Advanced Clinical business leadership and Advanced Clinical Business Development, SMEs, and customers, to capture and qualify ideas for consideration for the innovation pipeline
  • Conduct project-level diligence and competitive analysis related to innovation opportunities
  • Manage budget and work with a mix of internal and external resources to execute ideas
  • Utilize market analysis from multiple sources including Advanced Clinical Corporate Strategy and Business Development inclusive of business trends, risks, threats and opportunities to uncover and validate innovation opportunities
  • Execute approved innovation ideas, concepts and solutions as defined by the new governance process
  • Bring the organization along by leading portfolio and concept updates
  • Be an active participant in both innovation and Clinical Research-specific conferences and events


  • Minimum 5 years of experience leading a corporate innovation program, lab or dedicated incubator with a portfolio of ideas spanning multiple stages of maturity
  • Both exposure and working knowledge of a range of established innovation practices and methodologies
  • Customer obsession – must have an excellent track record of partnering with internal and external customers and partners and new bringing ideas from concept to development
  • Strong quantitative and qualitative analytical skills
  • Possesses an innovation mindset -- able to adapt and evolve based on changing market conditions and growth opportunities, as well as to fail fast
  • Current on major technology trends and able to navigate the hype cycle to gauge relevance
  • Demonstrated understanding of intellectual property and related impact to innovation work
  • MBA preferred
  • Experience at a CRO, staffing company or professional solutions firm a plus

Advanced Group leverages over 30 years of expertise in talent acquisition, staffing, and outsourcing solutions to operate the award-winning Advanced Group family of brands, including Advanced Clinical, Catena Solutions, Advanced RPO, and WunderLand Group. Together, with mastery across professional disciplines and global markets, we’re dedicated to make a difference, every day, for our clients, our candidates, each other, and our communities. Advanced Group’s Shared Services team provides corporate services such as Marketing, Human Resources, Finance & Accounting, IT, and Operations to each of our brands. Our employees are the foundation of our energetic and collaborative environment, where constant learning and service to others take top priority. We seek dynamic, hard-working team members who are inspired to work amongst diverse backgrounds and perspectives. From our altruistic mission to outstanding career development opportunities, there’s no better place to grow your career than Advanced Group.

EEO Employer Verbiage:

At Advanced Group, our commitment to diversity and inclusion in every part of our organization is crucial to fulfilling our mission and demonstrating our REAL values. A diverse staff allows us to effectively draw on different perspectives and enhance our efficiency and effectiveness. Diversity thereby strengthens the legitimacy and relevance of Advanced Group in delivering services to our clients. We seek talented, creative individuals from a variety of backgrounds and cultures to work with us. It is our priority that our workplace be inclusive, welcoming of diverse ideas and appreciative of valuable experience.

Equal Employment Opportunity

It is Advanced Group’s practice not to discriminate against any Employee or applicant because of sex, race, color, age, national origin, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation or sexual preference, pregnancy or maternity, genetic information, marital status, physical or mental disability, medical condition, military or veteran status, or any other basis protected by applicable federal, state, or local law.

This practice applies to all terms and conditions of employment including, but not limited to, hiring, training, compensation, benefits, promotions, transfers, layoff, Company-sponsored education, social and recreational programs, and treatment on the job. If you have a disability or handicap and would like us to accommodate you in any reasonable way, please inform your Recruiter so that we can meet to discuss the appropriate alternatives available.