Check out our Career Q & A questions below to take a deep dive into this career path. If you’re interested in this type of career but unsure how to take the next step, click below to learn more about our services designed to support you.
After graduation, I launched my veterinary career at a large mixed practice in Shepparton, Victoria, Australia, where I was a jack-of-all-trades and gained extensive experience in all facets of small and large animal medicine and surgery. I thrived off the diverse and busy caseload and had a particular interest in orthopaedics, reconstructive surgery, dentistry, and avian medicine and surgery. After 6.5 years of full-time practice, I got to the point where I liked but no longer loved being in clinical practice. There were several reasons for this, including owner cost-constraints, long hours, lack of work-life balance, and ultimately the regular after-hours. Even to this day, certain ring tones elicit my stress response.
I have never been change-averse and have always kept my career options open. As luck would have it, I received a call out of the blue from a close friend who was a Technical Services Veterinarian for a large global animal health company. This call coincided with a period when I was dissatisfied with clinical practice. A maternity-leave position had become available, and I was asked if I would be interested in applying. It was the most opportune time to make a move into the animal health industry.
There were no specific qualifications other than a veterinary degree and a ‘few years’ of clinical practice.
The only issue I very occasionally encountered was the perception of other vets that considered industry to be “The Darkside” and that I was “no longer a real vet”. To be honest, once I explained to them my role and it’s inherent benefits particularly around work-life balance, they always end up asking if there are any similar positions coming up.
The best bits are definitely that I get to be creative, analytical, problem-solve, and collaborate with absolutely amazing people. On top of that, there are many ‘perks’ to my role including:
Every day is highly variable, which is something I embrace and love. Most days kick off with team or project meetings, approving social media content for our digital team to ensure it meets brand and regulatory guidelines, replying to any pressing emails, and resolving any escalated or difficult consumer care enquiries. The latter is something I enjoy as you get to use your clinical knowledge to assess patient histories, laboratory findings, etc. to determine the best nutritional support for the patient. The rest of my day is spent reviewing technical marketing pieces, working on local/regional/global projects, providing internal and external nutritional training, driving key opinion leader (KOL) and key account engagement, drafting communication and educational pieces, etc.
Embrace change, value yourself, trust your intuition, and network. Never be afraid to ask for advice or help.
We send out regular updates with articles about creating a sustainable career in vet med, along with job opportunities and more. Employers, we’ve got great articles for you too!
Ebony is a veterinarian, vetmed educator, speaker and mentor. She focuses on unlocking people’s potential and building confidence in others through her advisory positions, consultant to a number of congresses, and as an entrepreneur.
She is fascinated with harnessing technology to support animal health education in developing countries and collaborates with tech charities. She is also co-founder of VetYou – helping to support professionals in their financial future. Ebony is also a visiting lecturer at Surrey University and publishes work in the field of gut health on whole horse health. Ebony is the recipient of the inaugural RCVS Inspiration Award and the University of Liverpool Alumni Award.
Melanie is a veterinarian, entrepreneur, speaker, educator, and mum. Melanie loves working with teams to create change, find new ways to think through problems, and collaborate.
She holds a DVM from the Ontario Veterinary College, and MBA in Sustainable Commerce from the University of Guelph, and a Project Management Professional designation.
Melanie has held roles in many fields of vet med including sport horse medicine, consulting, laboratory, surveillance, not-for-profit/ NGO, and charity sectors. She founded the DVM Project, the North American branch of VSGD, and formally joined the VSGD team in September 2022. Melanie’s MBA research focused on veterinary career paths.
Outside of vet med, Melanie loves riding horses, hiking and cross country skiing, writing, and beekeeping.
Adrian is a professional coach, speaker, writer, entrepreneur, business owner and veterinarian with nearly 25 years’ experience in the veterinary profession. He has been coaching and training teams for over 15 years. He has coached over 100 people to successful career changes.
He brings significant commercial and marketing expertise to any project, with 10 years of management experience at Hill’s Pet Nutrition and Colgate Palmolive.
Recognised as a thought leader in the veterinary industry, he has been invited to speak at numerous international seminars, events, Universities and company programmes. Adrian is also a Director at Vets, Stay, Go, Diversify.
Sophia is a veterinary surgeon and former British Army officer. She qualified as a vet in 2007 from the University of Cambridge. She has has worked as an equine and small animal clinician in the private and charity sectors, as well as serving as a Veterinary Officer with the army, including deployments to Afghanistan, Jordan, and Germany.
Sophia’s professional interests relate to the (many!) potential benefits of technology, data science, and behavioural economics to animal healthcare.
Sophia lives on a farm in the Welsh borders with her husband, two sons, and wayward Border Terrier.
Share your experience from your time in practice to roles and responsibilities that you have had
These are things that must be in place in order for you to consider a role. Location or working hours are common features here.
Remi is a stay-versifier who works as a Registered Veterinary Nurse and Vet Student. When she isn’t studying, she works behind the scenes at VSGD to help support the community pages and Secret Support emails.
Remi has a passion for interprofessionalism in clinical practice and likes to help young students realise that anyone can pursue a career as a veterinary professional.