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Improving the Management of MSL Teams to Create Value across a Diverse Set of Customers

CHAPEL HILL, N.C., Feb. 27, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The role of the Medical Science Liaison has evolved over the past decade but one thing hasn't changed: face-to-face meetings are seen as the best way for MSLs to build relationships with Key Opinion Leaders.

Yet at the same time face-to-face meetings are recognized as the most valuable type of interaction, field medical teams within the pharmaceutical sector are facing external limits on their KOL interactions. This is just one of the challenges addressed in "Medical Science Liaison Services Excellence: Generating Value for Diverse Customer Groups."

Research and consulting firm Best Practices, LLC conducted the study to provide a comprehensive overview of the structure, management and services that are hallmarks of successful MSL groups.

Most companies expect to increase their MSL services to KOLs going forward, according to the research project. Only one company in the study said that it will decrease its services in the next two years. However, change will be less dramatic in the United States, where 38% of companies anticipate MSL services to remain the same over the next several years.

Meanwhile, companies see the greatest risks coming from regulatory bodies stifling work with KOLs or the KOLs home institution placing limits on MSL interactions.

Topics addressed in the study included:
  • Determine the structure and overall organization of Medical Science Liaisons (MSLs) Services, including geographic span, oversight responsibility and services provided to various customer segments.
  • Explore the methods used by MSLs to serve stakeholders and build those stakeholder relationships.
  • Identify roles, responsibilities and service levels provided to Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs).
  • Explore the ways through which MSLs provide services to KOLs. Determine frequency of services during pre- and post-approval stages.
  • Identify relationship development and management process used by MSLs for internal and external users.
  • Determine changing trends in the field of MSL management.
  • Identify risk factors involved in serving KOLs
  • Explore use of new technology for providing services.

This study is based on research and information provided by 35 pharmaceutical and medical device executives from 30 companies. The 145-page report provides two segments: the total benchmark class and U.S. only.

To access the full report or to download a complimentary summary containing insights found in this report, click on the following link:


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. For more information about Best Practices, LLC visit our Web site at

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