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Developing an Effective Pharmaceutical Sales Force to Serve the U.S. Hospital Marketplace

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – March 9, 2012. The U.S. hospital marketplace is made up of multiple market segments that each has its own organizational and decision-making structure for formulary decisions. Indeed, hospital formulary decisions are not only influenced by medical professionals focused on efficacy and safety but also by administrative personnel focused on operational efficiency and cost.

To successfully serve the U.S. hospital marketplace, pharmaceutical sales forces have to understand the nuances inherent in each hospital type in order to navigate the path to successful formulary placement.

New research from Best Practices, LLC reaffirms that pharmaceutical sales forces can't take a one-size-fits-all approach to serving the U.S. hospital marketplace. For instance, within the community hospital segment, the traditional sales rep model remains preferred whereas within the network segments (Integrated Delivery Networks) and VA hospitals, the account executive model is used most often, according to the study.

The report, Sales Force Effectiveness: Uncovering How Pharmaceutical Companies Serve the U.S. Hospital Marketplace, provides strategic insights into the optimal sales strategy, structure and resources for influencing the hospital marketplace. This updated 82-page report delivers valuable benchmarks across a variety of issues, including:

  • Importance ranking of formulary decision-makers within local hospitals, hospital networks, and among health care professionals
  • Most effective hospital sales force alignment and structure across five hospital types (community, regional networks, multi-state networks, academic centers and VA hospitals)
  • Effectiveness rating for different types of information/resources provided to formulary decision-makers

The research encompasses all the key hospital market segments, from community hospitals and integrated delivery networks to academic medical centers and VA centers, and focuses on understanding the variables that influence the development of an effective hospital sales force. Data is based on survey responses in 2011 from 12 sales leaders at 12 pharmaceutical and medical device organizations. The study includes longitudinal data from 2008 and 2006 to show how the marketplace has evolved and how sales groups can best serve hospitals in the future.

The study’s key focus areas include:

  • Targeting Key Decision Makers/Influencers in Making Formulary Decisions
  • Hospital Sales Force Alignment, Structure and Support
  • Hospital Sales Force Staffing and Training
  • Group Purchasing Organization Targeting and Sales Force Size

To learn more about this report, including information about the research participants, key findings and sample best practices, please download a complimentary excerpt and study overview at .

Best Practices, LLC is a leading benchmarking, consulting and advisory services firm serving biopharmaceutical and medical device companies worldwide. Best Practices, LLC’s clients include all the top 10 and 48 of the top 50 global healthcare companies. The firm conducts primary research and consulting using its comprehensive proprietary benchmarking tools and analysis. The operational insights, findings and analysis form the basis for our Benchmarking Reports, databases and advisory services to support executives in commercial and R&D operations.

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