Christie Shilling
By Christie Shilling,
Research Analyst

I play video games often in my free time and hold a particular love for the Portal series.  At the end of the first game, there is a cute song that contains the line, “We do what we must because we can.”  There aren’t many similarities I can find between pharma and the fictional Aperture Science company from the games (pending any news regarding armies of mantis men).  But that particular line lies parallel to the situation in which many companies find themselves as the digital age continues to bloom.  Medical publications transparency, in particular, is one area in which several companies are only beginning to actually do what they must. Continue reading “The Demand for and Implementation of Medical Publications Transparency” »


By Jennifer Harrell,
Research Analyst

Cutting Edge Information’s recent research in pharma sales force management reveals that the cost per sales rep has remained fairly consistent over the past several years.  Despite this consistency, the way in which the sales force is compensated fluctuates fairly often.  Companies continually adjust base pay, bonus packages, qualifications for bonuses, and other elements of compensation in pursuit of the elusive perfect payment plan.  Modifying the compensation plan can help companies develop better practices and change with a product line.  Continue reading “Four Simple Rules for Compensating Your Pharma Sales Force” »


By Natalie DeMasi,
Research Analyst

Phase I clinical trials are supposed to be the quickest, easiest trials with the simplest question in mind: will the drug harm the patient?  No? Good, then you may proceed. However, sometimes the trials are not as straightforward as all that – there can be problems in recruiting, sites can drop out, etc. For many companies, a good way to expedite Phase I trials – and save a little money – is to use contract research organizations (CROs) to administer the trial. In fact, surveyed drug companies outsource 70% of Phase I trial costs. Continue reading “Selecting the Right Vendor for Phase I Clinical Trials: Preferred Provider List or Bidding Process?” »


By Jacob Presson,
Research Analyst

When bringing together a group of active clinicians and specialists for a scientific advisory board, companies should make sure to maximize the effectiveness of the resources seated around the table.  Each person in the room has a different set of experiences, all of which are invaluable to the clinical trial being discussed. The process of converting this aggregated knowledge into a better product is what differentiates an average advisory board from a truly successful one. Continue reading “Making the Most of Scientific Advisory Boards with Clear Objectives” »


By Victoria Cavicchi,
Research Analyst

As the life sciences industry grows, companies’ internal groups must also evolve to match changing demands.  One surveyed pharmaceutical executive explained, “By and large, companies seem to know that consumers want more face time with organizations at a gut level, and companies are moving along that path.”  In response to this movement, medical communications teams are experiencing increasing visibility within both medical affairs and life science companies at large. Continue reading “Looking Outside the Box: How Medical Communications Groups Engage the Medical Community” »


By Sarah Ray,
Research Analyst

With the growth in companies’ pipelines, clinical trial management becomes essential. One aspect of study oversight, monitoring trial risk, has evolved in recent years.  In traditional clinical studies, clinical research associates (CRAs) typically visit each investigative site every four to eight weeks. However, regularly scheduled visits are fairly uniform in nature and do not always consider site experience and level of patient enrollment — factors which could potentially define a site as being either higher or lower risk.  Conceivably, under this type of structure, CRAs could visit sites that hadn’t enrolled a single patient — and do so with the same frequency as sites with high patient volumes. Continue reading “Clinical Trial Management: Risk-Based Monitoring Represents Viable Oversight Solution” »

Christie Shilling
By Christie Shilling,
Research Analyst

Medical information teams serve not only as the central hub to which other functions can turn for scientific knowledge, but also as the primary contact center from which HCPs, pharmacists and patients can all receive unbiased information on the products they use.  In order to further explore and benchmark practices in this area, Cutting Edge Information has launched a survey that focuses on the contact center aspect of medical information teams (See link below).  Participants receive a slide deck of data on pharmaceutical call center outsourcing, structure and budget benchmarks, key performance indicators (KPIs) and strategy development. Continue reading “On the Lookout: Pharmaceutical Call Center Outsourcing, Performance Measurement and More!” »


By Nicole May,
Research Analyst

The opportunities are countless for Big Data in pharma, particularly within the clinical trial space.  Harnessing the data generated during clinical trials could help shorten trial timelines and lead to less expensive and more efficient drug discovery and development.  In a recent report, Pharmaceutical Big Data Insights, we examined some of the applications of Big Data in these prospective trials and how companies are wrangling all the information into usable insights.  Surveyed companies conducting prospective studies report which data they use most: topping the list at 80% is health outcomes data, followed by patient-reported outcomes (PROs) and clinical trial data (see Figure 1). Continue reading “Patient-Reported Outcomes Spurred by Big Data in Pharma” »