Employee story

Charting a New Course: My Finance Development Programme Experience - Meet Iris

#RFDP #healthcarefinance #development
Published: 2023. 09. 18.
Tell us a little about yourself and your journey before joining the RFDP. 
I remember it was a sunny summer afternoon when I received the recruiter’s phone call inviting me to join Roche’s APAC Regional Finance Development Program (RFDP). That had been one of the best pieces of news I had ever received in my life.

My name is Iris. I was born and raised in China, and I moved to the United States when I was 15 and lived there for nearly 10 years. I studied International Economics and Finance in graduate school and had always thought I would pursue a PhD and become an economist. The outbreak of COVID-19 had hindered that dream. With the difficulties of quarantining myself from infected roommates and the increasing anxieties of my parents, I returned to China during my last semester of graduate studies in 2021.

I worked for an investment consulting firm in Shanghai upon graduation but soon struggled to find the meaning of it. The stressful working environment and terrible hours also caused me to ponder what I wanted to do with my life and what I wanted to accomplish in my career. At that moment, I had seen the RFDP online and thought, “This seems like a perfect fit.”

What are the things you like the most about working with the RFDP?
I especially enjoyed the agile way of working at Roche. In addition to the breaking of traditional hierarchical structures, it was also reflected in how we approached work daily. For example, squads, sprints and minimum viable products (MVPs) were commonplace at work, which enhanced our ability to rapidly adapt to the changing environment.

I also loved the people there. I met many people at Roche that I would have called friends. I met great leaders who were extremely accessible, listened to my confusion and passions and offered me genuine support. The feeling of belonging and safety I experienced at Roche allowed me to express my honest opinions and truly be myself.


"Joining the Roche Regional Finance Deveopment Program has been an enjoyable and enriching journey for me to learn and gain experience, especially at this early stage in my career."

Iris Guo
Senior Analyst - Roche Regional Finance Development Program
Why is your job important to you? What is the value you generate for Roche’s patients?
I love the job because I strongly resonate with Roche’s values and enjoy being part of a company that makes a positive impact on society. During my rotation at Pharma China, one task I took on was assessing rebates and discounts with the market access team, and that was when I realized how much effort Roche puts into making advanced medicines available for patients at a lower cost. When I analyze numbers, attend meetings and brainstorm solutions with my colleagues, I know my work will eventually benefit someone in need, and the satisfaction that comes with it is irreplaceable.

What would you say to someone who is considering joining the programme?
If you’re embarking on your finance career journey and hold a deep passion for the pharmaceutical industry, this programme is tailor-made for you. It’s not merely a job; it serves as a gateway to unleash the full potential of your expertise. This opportunity not only presents numerous avenues for engaging in impactful and pioneering projects but also facilitates collaboration with a diverse and highly supportive group of professionals from various backgrounds. This comprehensive programme equips you with the essential skills and knowledge to emerge as a proficient finance leader, all while ensuring a rewarding and enjoyable experience along the way.

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