Director, Human Resources

About Ikena
Ikena Oncology is a targeted oncology company that discovers and develops biomarker-driven therapies for cancer patients who need life-saving treatment, by understanding what drives their disease. Ikena is advancing five clinical, preclinical, and discovery programs and has a global strategic collaboration with Bristol Myers Squibb. We have raised capital from top tier investors OrbiMed Advisors and Atlas Ventures and recently announced the closing of a $120M in an oversubscribed Series B financing.

Role Description
Reporting to the Chief Operating Officer, the role contributes to the Company’s growth and development through effective strategic architecting and tactical service delivery of the Human Resources function. Based in a deep understanding of the business needs, this individual is responsible for developing and executing HR programs that are aligned with the core values of the business.


  • Act as trusted advisor/thoughtful sounding board and business partner, functioning as the expert on people and organizational issues
  • Lead organizational development activities to develop and enhance current organizational capabilities, focused on helping the business grow and operate more efficiently
  • Consult with the senior management team on the organization structure to ensure the organization supports business requirements
  • Partner with the executive team to foster a unified culture that inspires exceptional performance and deep employee engagement
  • Manage key stakeholders and recruiting partners to drive effective recruiting efforts that ensure all recruitment channels are returning high quality and diverse talent
  • Partner with managers on developing accurate job descriptions, sourcing candidates, interviewing candidates, coordinating next steps and assessing final candidates
  • Manage the continuous performance development program, by communicating the process and timing to employees and managers, providing necessary support and training to all employees, and continuously enhancing the training and tools to ensure that the program is effective
  • Work with people managers to identify and develop growth opportunities and plans for strong performers, including a combination of training, coaching, stretch assignments and self-learning
  • Lead the ongoing development of innovative Total Rewards strategies that support the company’s high growth environment
  • Ensure that compensation policies and practices are attuned to realities of the marketplace
  • Champion our values by building them into structured programs and exemplifying them day-to-day
  • Develop, standardize, and continuously refine human resources policies and practices appropriate for a small, but growing biotech company


  • BA/BS degree and a minimum of 8 years HR generalist experience, preferably in life sciences, operating in a business focused HR partner capacity
  • Self-directed and quick learner with experience in developing, executing, and maintaining new HR programs to meet company needs
  • Demonstrated experience driving and implementing cultural enhancements and increasing employee engagement
  • Great at diagnosing problems using critical thinking skills and then devising innovative solutions
  • Highly adaptable to changing priorities and ability to adeptly pivot to meet emerging needs in a fast-paced environment
  • Strong communicator (written and spoken) and ability to work graciously with a wide range of people

Personal attributes: team oriented, goal-driven, organized, highly collaborative, open-minded, data-driven, creative, persistent in the face of obstacles and uncertainty, flexible, self-aware of strengths and weaknesses, objective in the evaluation of data and strongly optimistic about overcoming challenges.

Application Form

Our supportive work environment fosters creative thinking and freedom of expression.