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How to Become a Virtual Clinical Trial Manager

Duties, Responsibilities, Requirements, Certifications, Job Outlook, and Salary

African-American medical professional with a chart

If you possess strong interpersonal skills, an organized nature, and interest in the scientific field, then becoming a Clinical Trial Manager could be a great career choice. Clinical Trial Managers are responsible for executing and supervising clinical trials using effective organizational strategies. They also review each trial’s results through the lens of rigorous clinical procedures. These healthcare agents typically have an interest in medicine, biology, chemistry, or other similar fields.

One of the many perks of this position is the ability to work remotely. In fact, we featured Clinical Trial Managers on our list of the best work from home nursing jobs. We’ve put together this career guide to help you better understand the role of a Clinical Trial Manager.

(Click here to see our full list of the best remote nursing jobs)

Continue reading to learn more about the requirements, responsibilities, training, salary, and job outlook of Virtual Clinical Trial Managers.

Clinical Trial Manager Definition

What is a Clinical Trial Manager?

Clinical Trial Managers are responsible for leading the process of clinical trials by using effective organizational strategies and reviewing the results through demanding clinical procedures.

Clinical Trial Manager Duties & Responsibilities

What Does a Clinical Trial Manager Do?

The responsibilities of a Virtual Clinical Trial Manager revolve around the day-to-day management of a trial. This includes recruitment, retention, training, appraisal, and supervision of team members.

Some of the day-to-day job responsibilities of a Clinical Trial Manager include:

  • Managing clinical trials for a variety of clients, such as private physicians, drug companies, government agencies, academic institutions, and more.
  • Reporting issues to the director or physician in charge of each trial.
  • Recruiting participants or study subjects for clinical trials. This includes screening potential participants and giving them necessary information.
  • Monitoring trial progress by keeping track of every development. This often means using specific diagnostic tools.
  • Contacting the scientists or physicians who are responsible for each trial. They may need to meet with them as well to provide updates regularly.
  • Gathering data from participants and presenting it to the appropriate parties.
  • Overseeing Clinical Research Associates (CRAs) and Clinical Data Managers (CDMs).
  • Assuring compliance with SOPs and local regulations.

Where Do Clinical Trial Managers Work?

Clinical Trial Managers often work for pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, private research companies, universities, and other similar institutions.

Like the other jobs on this list, you can perform a Clinical Trial Manager’s job remotely. This is because many of their tasks take place in the virtual realm. In addition to other tasks, they oversee clinical policies, manage regulatory documents, collaborate with other companies, and hire appropriate staff. The global pandemic has only increased the need for Virtual Clinical Trial Managers.

Clinical Trial Manager Hours

Clinical Trial Managers may work during regular business hours. They also tend to fill full-time positions at 40+ hours per week. On occasion, they may need to work outside of regular business hours and complete time-sensitive projects or assignments.

Clinical Trial Manager Skills

Becoming a Clinical Trial Manager might be a great fit for you if you:

  • Offer strong interpersonal communication skills
  • Possess excellent organizational skills
  • Excel at multitasking, prioritizing, and time management
  • Have a strong research or scientific background
  • Meet each client’s goals within a set budget
  • Are dependable, resourceful, and supportive
  • Approach tasks with a patient and dedicated mindset
  • Work well with others, various types of personalities, etc.

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Clinical Trial Manager Schooling & Certification

How Long Does it Take to Become a Clinical Trial Manager?

What Degree Do You Need to Be a Clinical Trial Manager?

In order to be qualified for the role of a Clinical Trial Manager, you will likely need to earn a bachelor’s degree. Some employers will require that you obtain a bachelor’s degree in medicine, biology, chemistry, or a similar field. Many employers will also allow you to take the knowledge and skills you’ve learned from earning your BSN and apply those to the role of a Clinical Trial Manager.

If you pursue a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree, this means you must graduate from an accredited nursing program. You may also need to pass the NCLEX-RN licensing exam and seek two to four years of related experience.

If you’d like to become a Clinical Trial Manager, then you’ll need to take the following steps:

1. Earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree (BSN)

The first step to becoming a Clinical Trial Manager is to earn your bachelor’s degree in nursing or life sciences. A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree will likely set you up for better job opportunities, higher earning potential, and a greater job outlook.

Candidates of BSN programs must usually submit various application materials, such as academic transcripts, GRE scores, personal essays, and letters of recommendation.

The core nursing classes during a BSN program often include the following topics:

  • Professional nursing
  • Health assessment
  • Family nursing
  • Medical and surgical care
  • Nursing management
  • Psychosocial nursing

(Click here for our comprehensive career guide on becoming a Registered Nurse)

2. Complete an Internship Program

If you’re looking to become a Clinical Trial Manager, you may need to complete an internship program so that you can observe the clinical trial process under supervision.

3. Gain Specialized Training

Finally, you may need to acquire specialized job training through your employer. For instance, some future job opportunities may require three or more years of experience for a pharmaceutical company or related field.

4. Consider Certification

While certification is optional for Clinical Trial Managers, it would likely be beneficial to pursue it. The primary certification for these professionals is the Project Manager (ACRP-PM) subspecialty designation through the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP). Certification requirements include but may not be limited to passing a 60-question exam.

BSN sign on a stack of books with a stethoscope

Clinical Trial Manager School Cost

So, how much does it cost to become a Clinical Trial Manager? As previously stated, most Clinical Trial Managers have at least earned a bachelor’s degree. If they choose to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree, the cost will normally depend on the institution.

However, you can probably expect to pay anywhere from $40,000 to $100,000 when this process is all said and done.

Work from Home Opportunities

To become a Virtual Clinical Trial Manager, you may need to acquire an undergraduate degree in medicine, biology, chemistry, or another related field. Before obtaining a job, you will likely also need to complete an internship program so that you may observe the clinical trial process with supervision.

You may also find that general clinical experience will help you become a Clinical Trial Manager. In fact, some of these positions require experience in a role like the clinical research associate. In addition, a number of Clinical Trial Managers have previous experience as a senior clinical research associate or clinical research coordinator.

When you start your job search, it might be more helpful to look for industries rather than specific terms or titles. This is because you might miss jobs related to the Clinical Trial Manager title in other industries or fields. Having said that, most Clinical Trial Managers find positions in healthcare or pharmaceutical industries.

Clinical Trial Manager’s Salary

How Much Does a Clinical Trial Manager Make?

According to, the average Clinical Trial Manager   $129,000 per year or about $62.00 per hour. While their salary range typically falls between $112,000 and $149,000, Clinical Trial Managers in the 90th percentile can earn more than $150,000 per year.

(Click here to learn about the highest paying nursing jobs)

Clinical Trial Manager Job Outlook

Although the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) may not offer specific job outlook data for Clinical Trial Managers at this time, they do predict great overall growth for medical professionals and Medical and Health Services Managers through the next decade. According to the BLS, the overall employment of Medical and Health Services Managers is expected to grow 32 percent by 2029.

Close up of a doctor's coat

Why Pursue a Career as a Clinical Trial Manager?

If you’re looking for a new career in the medical field, you might want to consider becoming a Clinical Trial Manager. In this role, you can coordinate, manage, and oversee numerous aspects of clinical trials. Your skills fill a crucial role of the public health infrastructure. In addition, they will become increasingly necessary as the healthcare landscape continues to evolve.

If you’re an aspiring nurse but don’t know where to begin, you can earn your Vocational Nursing diploma, BSN degree, or enroll in any of our other nursing programs at Unitek College.