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Dottikon
Dottikon
Attendences
2021 | Silver Partner
2019 | Base Partner
2018 | Base Partner
2017 | Base Partner
2016 | Base Partner
2015 | Base Partner
2014 | Base Partner

dottikon.com
Dottikon Exclusive Synthesis AG
We are
We are the Specialist for Hazardous, Safety-Critical Chemical Reactions with a strong emphasis on technology-driven Research & Development and Scale-up. A custom manufacturer of APIs and advanced intermediates for the pharmaceutical and industrial industries around the globe, we pursue a one-site strategy in Switzerland that covers the full range from lab scale all the way to multi-ton production.
We offer
Our one-site strategy creates a unique environment that allows for rapid response times to customer inquiries, fast decision taking and on-site production. You will have access to all the plants and equipment where your chemistry will be implemented. As a demanding, dynamic and performance-driven company, we offer flat hierarchies, clear structures, competences, and responsibility in a constructive and open working environment.
We are looking for
We are looking for flexible and committed chemists with a strong team spirit, an entrepreneurial mentality, a sense for initiative, and good communication skills. The ability to work independently and accurately is just as important as your motivation to deliver outstanding results.
// Interview interview
Dr. Tobias Brütsch
Senior Process Chemist R&D

Education
Ph.D. thesis on "Total Synthesis of Mandelalide A and Synthesis of (-)-Zampanolide Analogs for Structure-Activity Relationship Studies", ETH Zurich (Switzerland), Advisor: Prof. K. H. Altmann (2012-2016)
Master Studies in Chemistry, University of Zurich (Switzerland) (2010-2012)
Bachelor Studies in Chemistry, ZHAW Wadenswil (Switzerland) (2006-2009)

Career
Senior Process Chemist R&D Routefinding, DOTTIKON EXCLUSIVE SYNTHESIS (2016-present)
Was ist ihre derzeitige Tätigkeit bei DOTTIKON ES?
Ich bin bei DOTTIKON ES als Senior Process-Chemist in der Forschung und Entwicklung im Bereich Routefinding und Prozessforschung tätig. Dabei beschäftigen wir uns mit der Entwicklung neuer Syntheserouten für pharmazeutische Wirkstoffe oder deren Intermediate. Durch ein optimales Prozessdesign stellen wir die Skalierbarkeit, Sicherheit, Wirtschaftlichkeit und Nachhaltigkeit der neuen Route sicher.
Welchen Rat würden Sie einem „frischen“ ETH Absolventen geben, der sich auf Jobsuche begibt?
Ohren und Augen auf! Die meisten Absolventen machen sich vermutlich schon vor dem Abschluss Gedanken darüber, in welcher Richtung sie sich bewegen wollen. Hat man eine Firma mit einem interessanten Jobinserat im Fokus, sollte man sich so schnell wie möglich bewerben.
Wie sieht Ihr klassischer Arbeitstag bei DOTTIKON ES aus?
Den klassischen Arbeitstag gibt es nicht, da wir sehr vielseitige Projekte für unterschiedliche Kunden bearbeiten und jedes Projekt ganz spezifische Herausforderungen mit sich bringt. Auf der Suche nach neuen Routen und während dem Prozessdesign, arbeiten wir meistens im kleinen Team im Labor. Dabei ist mein Arbeitstag geprägt durch Literaturrecherchen und das Planen, Ausführen und Auswerten von Laborexperimenten. Bei weiter fortgeschrittenen Projekten, wie zum Beispiel bei der Vorbereitung einer Produktionskampagne, stehen eher die technischen, organisatorischen und regulatorischen Fragestellungen im Zentrum.
Wie kam es, dass sie nun für DOTTIKON ES arbeiten? Wie sind sie auf die Firma aufmerksam geworden?
Gegen Ende meines Doktorats an der ETH war ich auf der Suche nach einer Stelle in der chemischen Forschung und Entwicklung in der Nähe von Zürich. DOTTIKON ES war mir schon vorher als potenzieller Arbeitsgeber mit einer starken Forschung und Entwicklung bekannt.
Wie lief ihr Bewerbungsprozess bei DOTTIKON ES?
Der Bewerbungsprozess würde ich als intensiv und effizient beschreiben. Ich erhielt nach jedem der zwei Gespräche eine schnelle Antwort und wurde klar über das weitere Vorgehen informiert.
Was glauben Sie unterscheidet DOTTIKON ES von anderen Chemiefirmen? Was sind die drei grössten Vorteile von DOTTIKON ES?
Als inhabergeführte Firma verfolgt DOTTIKON ES eine sehr langfristige Strategie, die konsequent auf die Bedürfnisse der Kunden und des Marktes ausgerichtet ist. Die Firma hat bewusst nur einen Standort und baut diesen weiterhin mit neuen Produktionsanlagen aus. Das schafft eine natürliche Nähe zwischen den Abteilungen und minimiert Reibungsverluste im Berufsalltag. Die Forschung und Entwicklung hat bei DOTTIKON ES einen sehr hohen Stellenwert. Damit ist DOTTIKON ES in der Lage auch für chemisch komplexe Moleküle und anspruchsvolle Transformationen innovative und robuste Prozesse zu entwickeln und diese rasch in die Produktionsanlagen einzuführen.
Was haben sie studiert und haben Sie sich durch das Studium gut auf Ihre jetzige Tätigkeit vorbereitet gefühlt?
Nach meinem Masterabschluss in Chemie an der Uni Zürich habe ich an der ETH bei Prof. Altmann promoviert. Dort durfte ich mich mit der Totalsynthese von Naturstoffen befassen. In meiner jetzigen Position bin ich dankbar, auf das chemische Grundwissen aus dem Studium und die Erfahrungen mit komplexen organischen Synthesen aus meiner Doktorarbeit zurückgreifen zu können. Die Herausforderungen im beruflichen Alltag brauchen aber auch spezifisches Fachwissen, Teamfähigkeit, Problemlösungskompetenz und viel Erfahrung.
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// Interview 2017
Dr. Ulrich Neuenschwander
Head of Method Validation

Education
BSc und MSc ETH Chemistry (2003-2008)
ETH Zürich PhD with Prof. Dr. Ive Hermans (2008-2011)

Career
Project Leader WA method validation (2013-2014)
Head Method Validation (2014)
What do you do as Head of Method Validation at Dottikon?
Dottikon produces active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) for drugs. In my role, I supervise roughly a dozen employees. My group is part of the quality department and always works according to cGMP standards. Our task is to validate methods of analysis for newly developed APIs. This means that chromatographic, spectroscopic or chemical methods, which were developed internally or externally, are checked thoroughly before they are cleared for routine use. Using experimental date, we show that the methods are suitable for their purpose, e.g. determining the purity of a compound.
Are you mainly working in Dottikon or is your position a more international one.
Our company has a single-site policy, therefore I am usually working in Dottikon. Since everything is on one site, you can experience first-hand all the aspects of the pharmaceutical production. You can really see everything: Research&Development, Validation, small-scale production all the way up to the multi-ton scale production. Since our customers are spread all over the world, we regularly have international phone conferences.
You started at Dottikon as Project Leader in Method Validation, what were your responsibilities at that time?
Overall, the responsibilities were the same as in my current position. As Project Leader I was working much more operatively and was occasionally standing myself at the lab bench. Also the number of project I was responsible for, was smaller, but in turn I was involved in much more detail.
Are there possibilities within Dottikon to change fields, for instance from research&development to production or marketing?
Of course, there are possibilities to develop oneself within Dottikon, depending on your personal and professional background. Not all interchanges are equally easy. If you start out in Quality or R&D, you surely have a good foundation for a move in to different departments. One should always bear in mind, that such a change should be considered very carefully. It does not make sense to bounce around between departments and it does not help you to achieve your goal to become an expert in your chosen field.
What made you choose Dottikon as an employer? Did you apply on an advertised position or was it a speculative application?
I visited dottikon.com/jobs and saw an interesting job listing there. The next step was to talk to an acquaintance who already worked at Dottikon. I informed myself about the working atmosphere and applied soon after.
Are there possibilities to get some first-hand experience at Dottikon, either through internships or collaborations with universities?
We prefer candidates who dare to dive in head first into the job, meaning that they apply for an advertised position of their own volition. If there is no suitable position advertised, there is of course the possibility of a speculative application, since we are always looking for capable chemists or employees in general.
In your PhD-Thesis at the ICB (ETH) you explored the mechanism and kinetics of the radicalic autooxidation of terpenes. Did these experiences help you with your responsibilities at Dottikon?
I studied reaction mechanism with a combination of experiments, ab initio calculations and kinetic modelling. During the experimental part it was vital to get a very detailed picture of the reaction pathway. I could achieve this, using analytical methods, which provide precise and accurate results, like GC, HPLC and spectroscopy. Since my PhD-thesis analytics has change more and more from a tool to the purpose of my work.
How big was the change after your PostDoc when you came to Dottikon? Does one work different in industry compared to university?
I experienced my time at university very intensively. To be a significant part of excellent research, you have to make a significant personal investment. So if you are used to be focussed on your task with commitment, joy and a will to learn, you will be able to succeed in industry as well. One of the bonuses of an industry career is that you are a part of a big, interdisciplinary team and you are not a solitary fighter.
DOTTIKON produces a lot of products, that have to be certified according to cGMP. Which are the special challenges this poses to QA?
The challenge lies among other thing in the fact, that the laws (or their interpretation) is constantly changing. So there is a certain need for flexibility and the processes within the company need to be constantly updated according to the external circumstances. At the heart of this there is a need for a scientific evaluation of the recorded data and a precise documentation of the drawn conclusions.
Last question: What advice would you give to a 'fresh' ETH graduate who is looking for a job?
First: Instead of focussing only on big companies, you should seriously consider medium-sized companies. The fascinating thing about medium-sized companies is that you can very soon take responsibility and really make a difference.
Second: You should have the courage to correctly assess your qualifications and don’t be intimidated by the flowery language used in the category 'requirements' in a job posting.
Read more