Thursday, July 17, 2014

Channel chat with EBN: How to implement effective channel management

Have channel management questions?
Join our live EBN chat!
Mark your calendars! On Thursday, July 24 at 2:00 p.m. EDT, Revitas thought leaders are joining EBN to discuss how to implement an effective channel management strategy.

Channel sales directly affect revenue for many organizations, and across industries, businesses are starting to refocus their strategies for improved incentive and partner management. It’s all about connecting the dots from the start of a contract through channel success.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Building successful channel incentives programs for life sciences companies

How to build pharma
channel incentive programs
In a recent post, my counterpart Joe Alphonse, Product Manager for Revitas Commercial Solutions, pointed out an excellent infographic about incentive management featured on Global Channel Management. I wanted to build on Joe’s thoughtful insights, so let’s take another look at the infographic. While his post and the infographic are focused on designing and managing incentive programs for non-pharmaceutical entities, much of the advice is transferable to pharmaceutical and life science industries.

Zeroing in on business drivers and selling objectives, we find there are shared goals across the commercial and pharmaceutical segments, including driving revenue, increasing market share, and achieving strong, profitable channel performances. While the infographic outlines scorecard metrics for channel performance, I wanted to extend the discussion by highlighting some areas where life sciences can benefit from the channel management and marketing practices shared by the commercial side.  

Focusing on sales by products and partners 
Pharmaceutical manufacturers can benefit from building strategies that balance the goals of improving sales and market penetration by product lines with a plan that helps to control costs and simplify incentive processing. Incentive strategies on the life sciences side are varied and extremely complex. The advent of managed care and its modern-day expansion through the U.S.’s Affordable Care Act rebates have become the norm to access and support a patient’s pharmaceutical therapies through the patient’s health plan’s drug coverage formularies. Pharmaceutical manufacturers are then managing a broad and deep matrix of products and incentive types across a wide network of channel partners.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Slideshow: Does your organization have these gross-to-net management problems?

The path to better accruals management
Pharmaceutical manufacturers know the pain of managing gross-to-net and financial accruals, as many are still doing it manually, using spreadsheets and other ad hoc solutions. But as sales volumes increase, so do the complexities of processing accruals.

The more challenging the process becomes, the more likely errors are to occur, leading to inaccurate accounting and unexpected results.

Take a look at the slideshow below to better understand the challenges associated with gross-to-net accounting for pharma manufacturers and the impacts to various job functions. We’ll also run through the automated solutions available to address those impacts:

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Questions to ask to ensure channel incentive program success

How to build a successful 
channel incentive program

Our friends at consistently publish great content, but they outdid themselves with a brand new infographic. They took an intimidating process -- selecting and building a successful channel incentive program -- and broke it down into a simple structure. The infographic discusses the types of programs, the types of rewards, and the focus of compliance, all in a single graphic that’s easy to follow and even easier to digest.

While the infographic accurately depicts how to select and build a successful channel incentive program, I’d like to expand the discussion to what it doesn’t talk about: how to execute and reconcile such programs. This back-end process is often a challenge, yet is critical to the success of any type of incentive program. 

Your channel sales and marketing teams spend countless hours creating compelling and unique channel incentive programs…but managing incentives post-execution is often the stumbling block. While the goal of every incentive is to help drive revenue, most organizations struggle with quantifying success or failure. Did you overpay incentive claims (giving away precious margin)? Did you underpay incentive claims or make untimely payments to channel partners, potentially ruining relationships and damaging partner relations? 

To determine the true impact of incentives, you need to ask yourself a few key questions after you execute your program:

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Revitas summer road trip: Heading to these can’t-miss events!

Summer 2014: Revitas's webinars,
tradeshows, and conferences
We have the rest of our summer all planned out with webinars, tradeshows, and conferences, from July to September, covering industry topics from high-tech to life sciences. Revitas will be offering the latest insights on how to integrate contract and revenue management, talking to leaders in the microelectronics industry, sharing best practices for managing the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program, and more. Get out your calendar, because you won’t want to miss us at any of these events.

Webinar: Eliminate the Roadblocks to Integrated Contract and Revenue Management
June 26, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. EDT
In this live webinar, Revitas will explore approaches to properly managing contracting and revenue management processes and map out a route for success. Join us to learn best practices for integrating your contracts and financials, the value and impact of accurate financial accruals, impacts of poor contracts on your bottom line, and more.

Tradeshow: SEMICON West 2014
July 8-10, 2014 in San Francisco
SEMICON West is the flagship annual event for the global microelectronics industry, displaying new products and technologies for microelectronics design and manufacturing. Come see technologies from across the microelectronics supply chain, from electronic design automation to device fabrication and final manufacturing. SEMICON West will also showcase emerging markets and technologies.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Channel contracting playbook: How to get the most out of underperforming channels

Improve channel performance with
a contract management strategy
Channel sales represent an increasing percentage of revenue for many organizations every year. Across industries, companies of all sizes are refocusing their channel strategies and looking to implement best practices for partner management.

Channel-focused organizations are challenged to find new and creative ways to stimulate channel sales and drive revenues. Companies utilize channel incentives, creatively modify existing promotions, and add new channel partners in an effort to drive channel revenue.

The corresponding channel contracts are designed with one goal in mind -- to drive value for each organization. They define the criteria for success and typically provide incentives for positive performance along the way.

If you’re not happy with the outcomes produced by your channel, it’s probably time to re-evaluate how you’re doing things. Refining contracting operations for the development of more profitable agreements is a direct conduit to improved channel performance.

A good place to start is by asking these three questions:

  1. Are your partners meeting your expectations?
  2. Do your contracts generate expected outcomes?
  3. Are your competitors easily stealing your partners away?

How to leverage channel contracting to drive sales and maximize margins

The value of a great contract process
Every organization is ultimately interested in two things -- driving sales and maximizing revenue. Nearly every activity in an organization should be completed to help one or both of these initiatives. This includes a number of areas and responsibilities, such as adding headcount, reducing headcount, partnering, process optimization, and much more.

To help address these sales and margin issues, Revitas recently partnered with the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management (IACCM) to conduct a webinar titled, “Effective Channel Strategy: Drive Sales and Maximize Margins with Contract Process Optimization.”

Conducted by IACCM CEO Tim Cummins and Dave Gelhar, Director of Solution Engineering at Revitas, the webcast digs into the value and impact of proper contracting on channel revenues.

To view a short clip of the session, click play below:

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Specialty pharmaceuticals: Navigating the new normal

A 2014 guide for specialty
pharmaceutical manufacturers
According to the IMS Institute, the U.S. drug market saw its first-ever decline in nominal drug spending in 2012. The patent cliff is a major contributor -- branded drug makers are still losing significant revenue to generics as patents expire. The still-recovering economy also plays a part, since the number of patients visiting to providers has decreased.

Therefore, the specialty segment is growing. Drug makers have been pursuing new avenues for generating revenue and stimulating growth, and many are focusing more research and development on specialty drugs. While these drugs are targeted at a smaller group of patients, they typically carry hefty price tags. The specialty segment holds real potential -- 25 percent of health care costs can be attributed to just 3.6 percent of patients -- and specialty spend is expected to quadruple by 2020.

The constructs of the burgeoning specialty pharmaceutical market create a perfect storm of new challenges for manufacturers. In this new landscape, manufacturers will need to evolve contracting, distribution, and pricing strategies and processes in order to succeed.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Shop talk: What pharmaceutical manufacturers need to consider when evaluating contract management

Avoid missed opportunities: How to
evaluate CM processes
Karen Bell, Revitas Product Marketing Manager for Contract Manager and Life Sciences, recently sat down with Michael Panicaro for a discussion on how pharmaceutical manufacturers without a turnkey contract management (CM) solution might be missing opportunities. Michael addresses how manufacturers can start an assessment of their contracting needs, factors to address growth, and opportunities to enhance management of incentive programs.

I wanted to get more insight into their discussion, so I grabbed Karen for a quick Q&A for our new “Shop Talk” series.

Q: As you talk with pharmaceutical manufacturers, what are the key factors that they need to keep in mind when evaluating their CM processes?

Karen Bell (KB): Every organization is structured differently, but the best place to start is by evaluating their contracting needs -- assessing what they’re doing today, identifying their growth projections, and then defining a strategy to enable an integrated approach to contract and revenue management.

With this assessment of their company’s requirements, they can then evaluate systems capabilities against their contracting needs to uncover any gaps. For fast action, they can effectively define short-term plans to overcome immediate deficiencies, such as gaps in upfront contract authoring and approval processes.