Era of Efficiency — Provider Selection and the RFP Process


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As procurement departments gain a stronger foothold within pharmaceutical companies, service providers are learning how to best work within the RFP process to create meaningful partnerships.
Service providers to the pharmaceutical industry, from agencies to CROs to IT companies to market research firms, have been facing a paradigm shift as sponsors continue to move provider selection into the hands of their procurement departments. This shift is being powered by financial pressures as the industry continues to contend with shrinking pipelines, fewer blockbusters, and consolidation through mergers and acquisitions.
Some say choosing service providers in this way turns professional services into commodities by basing selection primarily on price, while others say procurement departments allow for unbiased decisions based on data that take into account factors beyond cost. While some experts believe procurement departments impact the partnership between the pharma company and the supplier, procurement experts say they serve as a conduit between the parties, solving problems that arise and facilitating clear communications…

The Preferred Provider Tug-of-War

RFP Experts
Connie Andrews. Global Head of Clinical Operations, MedImmune Inc., Gaithersburg, Md.; MedImmune is a biotechnology company. For more information, visit
Joe Daley. President of GSW Worldwide, Columbus Operations, Columbus, Ohio; GSW is a full-service advertising and public-relations agency with offices in New York and London. For more information, visit
Frank Garnham. Director of Business Development, Chiltern International Ltd., London; Chiltern International is a CRO with expertise in clinical trials from Phase I to Phase IV across a broad therapeutic range. For more information, visit
Matt Giegerich. President and CEO, CommonHealth, Parsippany, N.J.; CommonHealth is a leading healthcare communications resource and a WPP Group company. For more information, visit
Simon S. Higginbotham. VP and Chief Marketing Officer, Kendle International Inc., Cincinnati; Kendle is a global CRO delivering clinical-development solutions to help the world’s biopharmaceutical companies maximize product life cycles and grow market share. For more information, visit
Ara Kebabjian. Global Sourcing, Marketing Services, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp., East Hanover, N.J.; Novartis is world leader in pharmaceuticals and consumer health. For more information, visit
Jim Knipper. President, J. Knipper and Co. Inc., Lakewood, N.J.; J. Knipper provides a wide variety of direct-mail, fulfillment, sampling, e-commerce, database, teleservices, and recall services. For more information, visit
Brian Langin. Associate Director of Business Development and Strategic Alliances, Averion Inc., Framingham, Mass.; Averion provides clinical-trials support for biotech, pharmaceutical, and medical-device companies. For more information, visit
Jim Primerano. Director of Business Development, Interactive Clinical Technologies Inc. (ICTI), Yardley, Pa.; ICTI is a global IVRS provider for the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. For more information, visit
Robert Sammis. Chief Operating Officer, etrials Worldwide Inc., Morrisville, N.C.; etrials is a provider of e-clinical software for the efficient collection, integration, and review of data in the clinical-trial process. For more information, visit
Bill Taaffe. President and CEO, ICON Clinical Research Inc., North Wales, Pa.; ICON Clinical Research is a full-service clinical research organization providing a comprehensive range of clinical services in Phase I-IV clinical trials to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and device industries. For more information, visit
Mike Thyen. Manager, Global Sourcing, Eli Lilly & Co., Indianapolis; Lilly is an innovation-driven pharmaceutical corporation. For more information, visit
Richard B. Vanderveer, Ph.D. CEO, V2 GfK, Blue Bell, Pa.; V2 GfK is a provider of primary pharmaceutical marketing research services to the life-sciences industry. For more information, visit