JUMP TO CONTENT

How to become a SAS programmer

Posting date: 19/05/2023
Author: Inside ICON

What does a SAS programmer do?

SAS programmers write, alter, and test the scripts and code that make it possible for applications to execute work from requirements created by programmers, web designers, or other people. One may create and write computer programs to save, find, and retrieve particular documents, data, and information.

How is SAS used in clinical research?

Pharmaceutical, healthcare, clinical research, and biotech organisations employ SAS Application Technology for Clinical Trials and Data Analytics. Patients' lives are changing significantly as a result of these clinical trials. You can pursue a career in clinical SAS programming if you are a clinical programmer, learning new techniques for analysing and summarising clinical studies. 

Ajay, Assistant SAS Programmer at ICON, reveals his path into the industry

My path into the industry hasn’t been as clear cut as some people’s journeys but hopefully, I can offer some insight into what can be achieved!

At university I studied Electronics and Communication Engineering and, after graduation, I was offered roles in companies that were operating in fields I didn’t find particularly interesting. Then I came across the pharmaceutical industry and SAS Programming. I found it very intriguing so I started to expand my skills at an institute near where I lived and I moulded myself until I was right for the position I was looking for.

Before I came into the industry I was aware of the effort that’s put into producing a drug. However, all I really knew was that they mixed chemical components and conducted trials that eventually produced a drug for the market. I had no idea about the sheer number of trials that were done before a drug could be approved.

What is attractive about working as an SAS programmer?

I was attracted to the industry mainly due to the work culture. I’d been following blogs from a variety of people around the world who worked in the industry and they made it sound very attractive. Since I’ve been working in the industry this has definitely proved to be true. I came in with high expectations and the working environment, the tasks I was set and the co-curricular activities have all proved to be very satisfying.

What is it like working at ICON as a SAS programmer?

I really enjoy working at ICON in particular. Like everyone, I have my ups and downs but it always remains a positive experience due to the support from my team and the upper management. 

What’s your advice for those thinking of a career as a SAS programmer?

For those looking to come into the industry, I’d recommend making sure you have a relevant qualification – even if it’s one that you earn after your degree, like I did. You’ll need to be spontaneous, adaptive, able to think outside of the box and be a smart worker rather than a necessarily hard worker. Come in with an open heart and a feeling of affinity towards the field – it will really keep you motivated!

It’s clear that my degree was not directly related to my role now. However, what this has shown me is that you can always change career paths with planning and hard work. I came into the industry with big expectations and I couldn’t feel prouder to work in pharma – an industry that supports doctors saving lives every day.

Why is a statistical programmer important in clinical research?

Our Statistical Programmers are responsible for designing and writing standard macros and programs that analyse clinical trial data.

This is vital since the program examines datasets, tables, figures (or graphs), listings (TFLs), and statistical reports with a focus on CDISC ADaM programming. The unit offers time and technical assistance to SAS users as a support. Additionally, it is in charge of guaranteeing the accuracy of all research and program-level outputs. Thus, team members will closely collaborate with Data Management to improve the quality of the data and handle queries.

What do the responsibilities of a SAS Programmer at ICON include?

  • Assisting the statistical programming team by developing SAS programs for analysis datasets, listings and safety summary tables.
  • Providing project tracking information to the team, addressing any validation comments and documenting programming activities.
  • Assisting in determining programming and internal quality review tasks assignments to SAS programmers within a project team
  • Planning ahead, performing early review of all assigned project work and escalating any issues
  • Ensuring that all output with a project is accurate and has a consistent appearance
  • Creating and maintaining study documentation and files according to departmental policy
  • Maintaining professional currency through literature reviews and membership in professional bodies
  • Training and assisting other SAS programmers in developing their skills
  • Reading all project team communications and attending project team meetings.


Looking for a new challenge? Find your next SAS programmer job at ICON today. 

Related Content

List #1

Related jobs at ICON

Principal Biostatistician

Salary

Location

Ireland, United Kingdom, South Africa, Poland, Bulgaria, Spain, Romania, Czech Republic, Slovakia

Department

Biometrics Roles

Location

Bulgaria

Czech Republic

Ireland

Poland

Romania

South Africa

Spain

UK

Slovakia

Remote Working

Remote

Business Area

ICON Strategic Solutions

Job Categories

Statistics

Job Type

Permanent

Description

As a Principal Biostatistician you will be joining the world’s largest & most comprehensive clinical research organisation, powered by healthcare intelligence.

Reference

2023-104906

Expiry date

01/01/0001

Read more Shortlist Save this role
Clinical Data Coordinator

Salary

Location

Mexico, Mexico City

Department

Full Service - Early Clinical and Bioanalytical Solutions

Location

Mexico City

Remote Working

Office Based

Business Area

ICON Full Service & Corporate Support

Job Categories

Clinical Data Management

Job Type

Permanent

Description

Clinical Data CoordinatorJR118138Site: Mexico At ICON, it’s our people that set us apart. Our diverse teams enable us to become a better partner to our customers and help us to fulfil our mission to a

Reference

JR118138

Expiry date

01/01/0001

Fernanda Bezerra Read more Shortlist Save this role
Lab Data Analyst I

Salary

Location

US, New York, NY, Whitesboro

Department

Full Service - Laboratory

Full Service - Development & Commercialisation Solutions

Location

Whitesboro

Remote Working

Office Based

Business Area

ICON Full Service & Corporate Support

Job Categories

Clinical Data Management

Job Type

Permanent

Description

At ICON, it’s our people that set us apart. Our diverse teams enable us to become a better partner to our customers and help us to fulfil our mission to advance and improve patients’ lives. Our ‘Own I

Reference

JR117940

Expiry date

01/01/0001

Hanna Pitcairn Read more Shortlist Save this role
Biostatistician II

Salary

Location

India

Department

Biometrics Roles

Location

India

Remote Working

Remote

Business Area

ICON Strategic Solutions

Job Categories

Biometrics Portfolio

Job Type

Permanent

Description

ICON plc is a world-leading healthcare intelligence and clinical research organization. We’re proud to foster an inclusive environment driving innovation and excellence, and we welcome you to join us

Reference

2024-107697

Expiry date

01/01/0001

Read more Shortlist Save this role
View all
List #1

Related stories

Headshot of Deepak, the author of this blog
Day in the life of a Clinical Data Management Project Manager

Teaser label

Our People

Content type

Blogs

Publish date

05/20/2024

Summary

Deepak is a Clinical Data Management Project Manager at ICON Strategic Solutions, the largest global provider of Functional Service Provision (FSP). He works as a dedicated resource within one of o

Teaser label

Deepak shares his experience as Clinical Data Management Project Manager at ICON Strategic Solutions.

Read more
Image depicting a career path
Resume Gaps: Showcasing Career Breaks Positively

Teaser label

Career Progression

Content type

Blogs

Publish date

05/10/2024

Summary

Overcoming Resume Gaps In an ideal world, resumes would neatly showcase an uninterrupted career progression. However, In today's dynamic job market, it's not uncommon for professionals to encoun

Teaser label

Periods of unemployment don't have to be a red flag. Learn proven strategies for addressing resume gaps.

Read more
Picture of a resume
One Size Doesn't Fit All: How to Customise Your CV for Every Job

Teaser label

Career Progression

Content type

Blogs

Publish date

05/10/2024

Summary

The Art of Customisation: How to Tailor Your CV for Any Role or Industry In today's competitive job market, a one-size-fits-all CV often misses the mark. To truly stand out and position yourself a

Teaser label

Discover strategies to highlight your expertise, role-specific skills, and industry knowledge to help your CV stand out.

Read more
View all
List #1

Recently viewed jobs

Browse popular job categories below or search all jobs above