Specialty and Hospital Sales Forces No Longer Contracting

Cutting Edge Information study finds significant percentage increases in specialty and hospital sales force headcounts

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- The drug industry has largely ended its run of sales force contractions among specialty and hospital sales forces, according to new research. In fact, 30 percent of specialty sales forces and 50 percent of hospital sales forces now plan to expand their ranks.

The data from “Specialty and Hospital Sales Force Management” show expansion plans range from a modest 10 percent for many companies to doubling at a handful of companies. For sales representatives, the data is a welcome reversal from the contractions that swept through the industry over the last five years. A similar study conducted by Cutting Edge Information in 2009 found that 44 percent of sales forces had contracted in the two previous budget cycles.

“Specialty and hospital sales forces appear to have reached equilibrium,” said David Richardson, lead author of the study. “We now hear more discussion of how to grow than how to shrink.”

For the better part of the last decade, cuts to sales force numbers dominated headlines. Now drug companies are relying more on specialty drugs to fill the void left by blockbusters that have lost patent exclusivity. “Some subfunctions and therapeutic area specialties are now poised for growth to support corporate strategy and portfolio management,” said Adam Bianchi, chief operating officer at Cutting Edge Information.

“Growth will be ‘smart’ and carefully managed, but companies now better understand the value that more specialized field forces bring.”

The new study focuses on benchmark partners’ key goals to build successful specialty and hospital sales forces as well as attract talent with competitive compensation for all experience and performance levels. Study findings include cost-per-rep and cost-per-detail metrics, as well as sales force compensation data and provides decision-makers with guideposts to:

  • Boost performance with sales call metrics, training benchmarks and breakdowns of sales reps’ field activities,
  • Build or adjust specialty and hospital sales force headcounts, and
  • Recruit the best potential team members with refined competitive compensation packages

“Specialty and Hospital Sales Force Management” (http://www.cuttingedgeinfo.com/research/sales/specialty-hospital-sales/) contains best practices and benchmarking metrics for managing next-generation hospital and specialty sales forces.


Cutting Edge Information
Elio Evangelista, 919-403-6583

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