Outsourcing is a common practice in business. Not only does it allow a business to save money by having an agency do the work for them, but it also allows them the peace of mind that the work they need done is being completed by professionals who are experts. A new study coming out of Cutting Edge Information has found that 5 1% of pharmaceutical companies’ global departments actually outsource many of their medical affairs activities and work, compared to only 24% of U.S.-based departments (and 8% of country departments).
So what is the top most commonly outsourced medical activities for all departments? The study found that medical education ranks as one of the top two most commonly sourced activities, along with medical communications. The study, “Medical Affairs: Effective Global Resource Allocation,” found that while many things were kept in-house with smaller responsibilities then outsourced to various agencies and vendors. It seems that even though these companies are seeking vendors and help for various tasks, they aren’t dependent on them.
This allows them to still have oversight while using vendors for external support of small tasks. And it seems global teams are also growing fast and with that growth comes the need to have specialized experts, especially when compared to teams in the U.S., which often times had full-time medical affairs staff on the job for longer periods of time.
In the study, about 90% outsource medical education and medical publications. Also, 80% of global teams also said they outsourced things like thought leader development activities and medical information teams. Least likely to be outsourced are functions that included regulatory responsibilities, health economics and compliance. It turns out only about 20% of global teams outsourced these kinds of activities.
Outsourcing can be a great thing for a company, as evident by the rise in outsourcing by the global pharmaceutical companies and could be a good thing for your company!