Bioinformatics Scientists

Overview
Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed
Experience

Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.

Education

Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).

Job Training

Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.

Examples

These occupations often involve coordinating, training, supervising, or managing the activities of others to accomplish goals. Very advanced communication and organizational skills are required. Examples include pharmacists, lawyers, astronomers, biologists, clergy, neurologists, and veterinarians.

Conduct research using bioinformatics theory and methods in areas such as pharmaceuticals, medical technology, biotechnology, computational biology, proteomics, computer information science, biology and medical informatics. May design databases and develop algorithms for processing and analyzing genomic information, or other biological information.

Salary Salary

Salary at 10th Percentile: $49K
Salary at 25th Percentile: $64K
Median Salary: $85K
Salary at 75th Percentile: $105K
Salary at 90th Percentile: $137K

Demand
Career Demand by State Career Demand by State Legend
Core Tasks

Communicate research results through conference presentations, scientific publications, or project reports.

Develop new software applications or customize existing applications to meet specific scientific project needs.

Consult with researchers to analyze problems, recommend technology-based solutions, or determine computational strategies.

Create novel computational approaches and analytical tools as required by research goals.

Analyze large molecular datasets, such as raw microarray data, genomic sequence data, or proteomics data, for clinical or basic research purposes.

Keep abreast of new biochemistries, instrumentation, or software by reading scientific literature and attending professional conferences.

Develop data models and databases.

Compile data for use in activities, such as gene expression profiling, genome annotation, or structural bioinformatics.

Design and apply bioinformatics algorithms including unsupervised and supervised machine learning, dynamic programming, or graphic algorithms.

Manipulate publicly accessible, commercial, or proprietary genomic, proteomic, or post-genomic databases.

Direct the work of technicians and information technology staff applying bioinformatics tools or applications in areas such as proteomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics, or clinical bioinformatics.

Provide statistical and computational tools for biologically based activities, such as genetic analysis, measurement of gene expression, or gene function determination.

Create or modify web-based bioinformatics tools.

Improve user interfaces to bioinformatics software and databases.

Confer with departments, such as marketing, business development, or operations, to coordinate product development or improvement.

Recommend new systems and processes to improve operations.

Instruct others in the selection and use of bioinformatics tools.

Collaborate with software developers in the development and modification of commercial bioinformatics software.

Test new and updated bioinformatics tools and software.

Prepare summary statistics of information regarding human genomes.

Technology Skills
Technology
Example
Hot Technology
Analytical or scientific software
The MathWorks MATLAB
Application server software
GitHub
Business intelligence and data analysis software
Tableau
Customer relationship management CRM software
Salesforce software
Data base management system software
Microsoft SQL Server
Data base user interface and query software
Structured query language SQL
Development environment software
Ruby
Enterprise application integration software
Extensible markup language XML
Enterprise resource planning ERP software
SAP software
File versioning software
Git
Internet browser software
Web browser software
Object or component oriented development software
Python
Object oriented data base management software
PostgreSQL
Office suite software
Microsoft Office
Operating system software
Shell script
Portal server software
Apache Webserver
Presentation software
Microsoft PowerPoint
Program testing software
User interface design software
Project management software
Microsoft SharePoint
Spreadsheet software
Microsoft Excel
Web platform development software
PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor
Word processing software
Word processing software
Tools Used
Tool
Example
Computer Equipment and Accessories
Desktop computers
Top 10 Knowledge Required
Biology
97%
Importance

Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.

Computers and Electronics
93%
Importance

Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Mathematics
87%
Importance

Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

English Language
85%
Importance

Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Chemistry
72%
Importance

Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

Education and Training
66%
Importance

Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Clerical
62%
Importance

Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.

Engineering and Technology
59%
Importance

Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.

Communications and Media
53%
Importance

Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.

Personnel and Human Resources
53%
Importance

Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

Top 10 Skills
Critical Thinking
83%
Importance

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Reading Comprehension
83%
Importance

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Active Listening
80%
Importance

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Complex Problem Solving
80%
Importance

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Speaking
80%
Importance

Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Writing
78%
Importance

Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Science
75%
Importance

Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Active Learning
73%
Importance

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Judgment and Decision Making
73%
Importance

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Mathematics
70%
Importance

Using mathematics to solve problems.

Top 10 Abilities
Written Comprehension
85%
Importance

The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Written Expression
85%
Importance

The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

Oral Comprehension
83%
Importance

The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Deductive Reasoning
80%
Importance

The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Inductive Reasoning
80%
Importance

The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

Information Ordering
80%
Importance

The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

Oral Expression
80%
Importance

The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Problem Sensitivity
80%
Importance

The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.

Fluency of Ideas
78%
Importance

The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).

Mathematical Reasoning
78%
Importance

The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.

Top 10 Work Activities
Interacting With Computers
99%
Importance

Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Analyzing Data or Information
96%
Importance

Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Thinking Creatively
94%
Importance

Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems
92%
Importance

Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Processing Information
91%
Importance

Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
90%
Importance

Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Getting Information
89%
Importance

Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
88%
Importance

Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
84%
Importance

Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others
84%
Importance

Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Detailed Work Activities

Advise others on business or operational matters.

Review professional literature to maintain professional knowledge.

Collaborate with technical specialists to resolve design or development problems.

Develop software or applications for scientific or technical use.

Research genetic characteristics or expression.

Train personnel in technical or scientific procedures.

Supervise scientific or technical personnel.

Develop technical or scientific databases.

Prepare scientific or technical reports or presentations.

Advise others on the development or use of new technologies.

Analyze biological samples.

Work Context
Electronic Mail

How often do you use electronic mail in this job?

Freedom to Make Decisions

How much decision making freedom, without supervision, does the job offer?

Indoors, Environmentally Controlled

How often does this job require working indoors in environmentally controlled conditions?

Face-to-Face Discussions

How often do you have to have face-to-face discussions with individuals or teams in this job?

Structured versus Unstructured Work

To what extent is this job structured for the worker, rather than allowing the worker to determine tasks, priorities, and goals?

Spend Time Sitting

How much does this job require sitting?

Work With Work Group or Team

How important is it to work with others in a group or team in this job?

Importance of Being Exact or Accurate

How important is being very exact or highly accurate in performing this job?

Telephone

How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?

Level of Competition

To what extent does this job require the worker to compete or to be aware of competitive pressures?

Education
Majors   based on the broader career Biological Scientists, All Other
Major
Biology, General
Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology
Botany/Plant Biology
Cell/Cellular Biology and Anatomical Sciences
Microbiological Sciences and Immunology
Zoology/Animal Biology
Genetics
Physiology, Pathology and Related Sciences
Pharmacology and Toxicology
Biomathematics, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology
Biotechnology
Ecology, Evolution, Systematics, and Population Biology
Neurobiology and Neurosciences
Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other
Applied Mathematics
Nutrition Sciences
Human Biology
Marine Sciences
Research and Experimental Psychology
Interests
Investigative
100%
Importance

Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Conventional
72%
Importance

Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Realistic
62%
Importance

Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Artistic
43%
Importance

Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Social
24%
Importance

Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Enterprising
15%
Importance

Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.

Top 10 Work Styles
Analytical Thinking
97%
Importance

Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.

Attention to Detail
91%
Importance

Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.

Persistence
91%
Importance

Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.

Dependability
90%
Importance

Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.

Integrity
90%
Importance

Job requires being honest and ethical.

Achievement/Effort
89%
Importance

Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.

Independence
89%
Importance

Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.

Initiative
88%
Importance

Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.

Adaptability/Flexibility
87%
Importance

Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.

Innovation
85%
Importance

Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.

Work Values
Independence
77%
Importance

Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.

Achievement
72%
Importance

Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.

Recognition
72%
Importance

Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

Working Conditions
67%
Importance

Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.

Support
53%
Importance

Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.

Relationships
48%
Importance

Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.