SURVEY: As an MSL, how long should you wait before seeking a promotion? N+500


Roughly a quarter (28%) of the responders would like to see a quick rise on the corporate ladder and be promoted to senior MSL within a year. While the majority (58%) believe that a good 2-3 years of experience is reasonable to have before being promoted to a senior MSL.

Here are some of the comments:

  1. Totally depends. Experience alone is not enough. Is the MSL involved in any training or content creation? Do they mentor others? Are they a lead on anything or bringing a unique talent? Have they pursued professional development, either outside of work or through work?
    I have worked some MSLs who have been in the field 15 years who are underperformers internally and externally, and some who are in their first year in the role who are stellar.


  1. Promotion/career progression should be made based on competency not the number of years on the job. However the two are "often" linked. It is also an argument commonly made by HR or managers that you do not have enough years of experienced to be promoted. This is also often reflected on the job description "XX years experience required" for Senior roles...


  1. I know MSLs who have many years of experience, and they are still at minimum competency. Excelling in a role has nothing to do with years, but more on performance, their drive and how the person has developed over the years.


  1. I chose 1 year but that's as an experienced MSL. Generally, one year is sufficient to establish yourself as a team member when you have experience and showcase your value. Then the next year is proactively working towards the promotion. A brand new MSL, or being brand new to the subject area, likely would need 2-3 years, but honestly every person is different and every team is different. If a career goal is to move up the ladder, these should be ongoing conversations starting as soon as you feel settled into your role and it feels right based on the dynamics and culture of the company and team you are on. 


  1. I agree (If your career goal is to move up the ladder), You should start "working" on your promotion as soon as you settle in. Start talking with your manager and start putting a development plan in place.


  1. It depends: if you live near the head office or if you can move with your family near the headquarters … between 2 and 5 years. If not : never because manager or Med Advisor positions are not field based .

MSL newsletter

Receive MSL blog stories, great MSL content, MSL news, career advice, MSL jobs, tips and discounts straight into your inbox.