Share: Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn I recommend visiting to read:%0A%0A {0} %0A%0A {1}
22q1-lifesciencesupdate-mobilehero 22q1-lifesciencesupdate-hero


Life Science Update: Finding Talent and Fostering New Ideas


Encouraging collaboration to formulate new ideas and creating access to skilled talent remain priorities for life sciences companies. Among current life science industry trends, there are several hot locations for the life sciences, as well as a focus on amenities that spark ‘spontaneous interactions’.

Even with the pandemic and many industries shifting to a higher percentage of remote work, many life sciences workers are still deemed ‘essential workers’ as they need to go to the physical office on a daily basis to monitor their experiments and projects. There’s a new trend in life sciences, however, where technology, automation and digitization are allowing people to increasingly work outside of the laboratory, at least some of the time. With this shift in how work is being done and ultimately needing less designated space, more companies are adjusting their footprints to allow for more amenities and collaboration areas with the goal of encouraging more employees back into the office while offering perks for those who are regularly there.

Spontaneous interactions 

Life sciences companies have long valued the chance interchange between different teams, departments and even complementary companies in campuses and multi-tenant buildings because they lend to knowledge transfer, collaboration, and new ideas. More and more companies are finding ways to further spur this interchange through enhanced amenities, shared spaces, and centralized features such as:

  • Informal, impromptu collaboration areas, hangout zones and ‘in between spaces’ along activated pathways that provide opportunities for collisions and quick interactions to naturally occur. 
  • Coffee shops and cafes that provide ‘high-end coffee’ as these popular amenities are replacing the company ‘water cooler.’ 
  • Gym and fitness classes, which are in especially high demand since they provide a wellbeing and social component.
  • Healthy food options from a variety of cultures that are rotated regularly. 
  • Ample outdoor space to eat, retreat for a quiet moment, work, collaborate, socialize, and host events. If there is no nearby outdoor space or the weather is prohibitive, companies are bringing the green in through biophilia (green wall, plants) as well as increasing access to natural light and lounge seating, booths, and work pods with outdoor views. 
  • Employee lounge areas that double as a work spot and a gathering place for groups and teams to host book clubs, share hobbies (crafts, puzzles, games), and meet informally. 
  • Flexible spaces with easily reconfigurable furniture to suit different needs (mobile tables, pivoting desks, whiteboards on casters, etc.). 
  • Other onsite employee-focused amenities such as IT helpdesk, dry-cleaning, take-home meals, car wash, car fueling/charging, and day care. 

Offering amenities that support your employees’ work life balance while simultaneously bringing them together to collaborate not only leads to happier employees, but also to new ideas, innovation, and cross-functional team development. A win-win all around for the life sciences workplace.

For life sciences companies, access to skilled talent with life sciences degrees, experience and skills is a key factor for location decisions. With an ecosystem mentality, life sciences companies often seek locations that are clusters of other peer companies and government or higher education research departments. This ecosystem mindset allows for knowledge sharing among public and private sectors and tends to drive up the concentration on both the employee and employer level.


Recently several markets have seen increased volumes of life sciences employees and companies, but still demonstrate a lower concentration of talent, which suggests that the market is less saturated and can accommodate more growth. These markets include:

  • Atlanta
  • Phoenix
  • Dallas
  • Riverside, California 

Over the past 10 years, the number of graduates with biological and biomedical degrees have been on the rise, and there is a steady supply of new life sciences graduates seeking to enter the workforce. This is good news for companies seeking to fill life sciences-related roles, which have nearly doubled over the past five years. Traditionally, graduates with life science degrees have flocked to markets with existing life sciences concentrations, notably:

  • Boston
  • Philadelphia
  • San Diego

However, Boston and San Diego have seen slightly slowed growth over the last two years, due to a higher cost of living. It’s important to note that these markets still command a substantial proportion of life sciences employees, but that proportion is slightly lower when compared to numbers from five years ago. Similarly, major markets where new graduates—across all industries—tend to settle have seen a steady influx of life sciences graduates. These markets are major destinations for new graduates with many degrees, but with a high concentration and saturation of life sciences roles:

  • Washington, DC
  • Los Angeles
  • New York City
  • Chicago  

Several other cities have seen major growth over the past two to five years, especially among life sciences graduates. These recent graduates are moving to: 

  • Tampa
  • Kansas City
  • Las Vegas
  • Denver
  • St. Louis
Many life sciences companies will continue to flock to markets with ecosystems and knowledge sharing among public, private and life sciences research, but more ecosystems could emerge in the future in some of these up-and-coming and high-growth markets.



This 2022 Life Sciences Update webinar breaks down the current trends in the life sciences industry by exploring:

  • Strength of real estate fundamentals
  • The ongoing labor crunch
  • How the economic slowdown is impacting the industry
  • The continued flow of funding into life sciences

    Key Contacts

    rachel park
    Rachel Park

    Consulting Director, Total Workplace
    New York, United States

    +1 (646) 8231744

    Download VCard

    Taylor Van Dam Atlanta
    Taylor van Dam

    Consulting Director, Total Workplace
    Atlanta, United States

    +1 (404) 853-5235

    Download VCard

    Related Insights

    life sciences

    Life Sciences Update: February 2024

    The life sciences industry enters 2024 with measured optimism, signaling that the sector has reverted to its long-term trend for growth. A flurry of recent announcements, from strong initial public offerings to exciting new mergers and acquisitions, has breathed new life into the industry.
    Sandy Romero • 3/6/2024

    Does your building qualify for a life sciences conversion?

    Interest in converting assets for life sciences use is growing amongst building owners. Cushman & Wakefield’s Project & Development Services team developed basic building performance criteria based on the minimum standards that life sciences companies typically require. 
    Eric Giles • 7/18/2023
    Life Science

    Challenges for Life Sciences Projects Means Early Engagement of Project Managers

    Persistent challenges continue to impact costs, material lead times and project timelines across all life sciences projects.
    Jason D'Orlando • 6/30/2023

    Related Industries & Specialties

    Life Sciences
    Our life sciences real estate experts drive customized, dynamic solutions for investors, owners, developers and occupiers within the quickly evolving life sciences sector. 
    Learn More
    Our Healthcare clients have a unique advantage: a global network of experts that optimize portfolios to better support their healthcare missions and business objectives.
    Learn More
    Total Workplace Consulting
    Total Workplace consulting brings together thought leadership, strategy, and guidance to help both occupiers and investors to address how work is changing, where people live, work and play, and what the implications are for real estate.
    Learn More

    Ready to talk?

    Our professionals are ready to provide further details on this and many other topics.

    With your permission we and our partners would like to use cookies in order to access and record information and process personal data, such as unique identifiers and standard information sent by a device to ensure our website performs as expected, to develop and improve our products, and for advertising and insight purposes.

    Alternatively click on More Options and select your preferences before providing or refusing consent. Some processing of your personal data may not require your consent, but you have a right to object to such processing.

    You can change your preferences at any time by returning to this site or clicking on  Cookies

    More Options
    Agree and Close
    These cookies ensure that our website performs as expected,for example website traffic load is balanced across our servers to prevent our website from crashing during particularly high usage.
    These cookies allow our website to remember choices you make (such as your user name, language or the region you are in) and provide enhanced features. These cookies do not gather any information about you that could be used for advertising or remember where you have been on the internet.
    These cookies allow us to work with our marketing partners to understand which ads or links you have clicked on before arriving on our website or to help us make our advertising more relevant to you.
    Agree All
    Reject All