Research Associate II

Number of employees


Berkeley, CA, United States

Posted on: 2024-02-05

Category: agritech

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Employment type:

Full time

Experience required:



Salary not provided

About the company:

Pivot Bio is the leading nitrogen innovator providing farmers and the world with a better nitrogen for improved productivity and sustainability

About Pivot Bio:  

At Pivot Bio, we are working together to transform agriculture, finding smarter, more sustainable and, ultimately, more profitable ways for farmers to grow. Working with and for farmers, we’re using cutting-edge science to create a microbial nitrogen for the world’s most vital crops. We are replacing synthetic fertilizers with a more sustainable, nature-driven plant nutrition that benefits farmers, consumers and the planet.

The Plant Bioassays Team at Pivot Bio is looking for a Research Associate who is excited about the challenges of working with novel soil microbes in a high-impact, fast moving, and supportive team​ environment​. 

This position will offer full time support to Pivot Bio’s proprietary in planta screening platform. Our in planta screening platform provides critical product performance data that informs improvements for downstream microbial engineering targets and advances candidates to field trials. This role will be responsible for maintaining continuity across multiple teams of operators and for providing regular hands-on support and plant expertise for assay operations. The Plant Bioassays Research Associate will support the Operations Team Lead in bringing development work into production and for the continual optimization and expansion of our key capabilities. This role will be lead routine assay operations in plant care, task delegation, materials ordering, assay set up and breakdown, and daily progress reporting in an electronic laboratory notebook and project management software.  

The ideal candidate will have expertise in small plant grow room or growth chamber studies and in planta biological screens. We are looking for someone who is energized by working in teams and solving creatively.

  • Routine operation of the in planta screening platform
  • Execute experimental protocols meticulously to ensure accurate and reliable data collection
  • Assist in the development and optimization of new screening protocols and procedures
  • Delegate workflow tasks to operator team
  • Train team members in basic plant care and techniques in plant biology
  • Responsible for maintaining healthy plants and conducting regular checks for pests and pathogens
  • Maintain a well-organized, safe, and clean laboratory environment
  • Record activities in an electronic laboratory notebook daily
  • Communicate effectively with team members and supervisors about progress, challenges, and results
  • Participate in regular training sessions to stay updated with the latest operational procedures and safety guidelines

Required education and experience 

  • Bachelors degree in plant biology or a related field and 2+ years relevant experience in an academic or industry
  • Proven experience in a laboratory role, preferably in plant science
  • Strong organizational skills and an ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently
  • Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written
  • Ability to troubleshoot independently
  • Demonstrated ability to follow complex protocols and procedures accurately 
  • Basic computer proficiency and ability to learn new software quickly
  • A team player with a positive attitude and strong problem-solving skills

Physical demands

  • Must be able to lift up to 50lbs at a time with assistance
  • Must be able to stand for at least two hour periods of time to conduct active laboratory work
  • Very Frequent - Repeating motions that may include the wrists, hands and/or fingers  

What we offer: 

  • Competitive package in a disruptive startup 
  • Stock options 
  • Health/Dental/Vision insurance with employer-paid premiums 
  • Life, Short-Term and Long-Term Disability policies 
  • Employee Assistance Program with free referrals and discounts 
  • 401(k) plan, 3% Match 
  • Commuter benefits 
  • Annual Training & Development support 
  • Flexible vacation policy with a generous holiday schedule 
  • Exciting opportunity to work with a talented and fun team

*Internal employees, please apply by clicking on the Internal Job Board icon on NSIDER

The salary range for this Berkeley, CA based position incorporates a premium for the cost of labor in this area.  If this role is hired remotely, contact us for the lower range for National Benchmark.  Following employment, growth beyond the hiring range is possible based on performance.

Hiring Compensation Range
$66,585$83,231 USD

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