Talent in the CRO Settings
We all well know from personal experience or just general knowledge of the field that large CROs have a plethora of varietal resource. They also may have a ‘front man crew’ of significant talent. Yet, it is generally a gamble for our clients whether they actually will get such talent or resources allocated to their trial. Here is yet another example of what sets us apart at OncoBay. We limit our resources to the utmost talent and only put forth resources we believe add more value than cost. So why the difference? Profit over Process over Patient.
Larger CROs have a greater financial burden to power such a mothership afloat. They have a tremendous responsibility to their investment community. CROs notably get a bad rap – like a sleezy used car salesman. One of the topics concerning pharma/biotechs is whether financial benefit for managing studies with extended timelines may drive those that seem to take much longer than possibly they should. Have we actually slipped into a “process over patient” field? Some say yes, the large box CROs may have. It is something we, OncoBay, can proudly state otherwise, but must remain watchful to ensure we actively never do. Patient centricity, followed by data integrity, must remain our top priority.
Outside of clear direct quality concerns of; potential patient impact, cost to client and possibly even impact to data integrity, there is also an indirect impact to such, leakage of quality talent. Those of us that do not want to play a role in a system that does not align with our personal integrity.
There are many key reasons why top talent is hard to keep and why we must strive to ensure we do not fall into these habits as an organization:
- Misappropriated scope of talent – going after the available over strategically going after key people with key attributes to fill important gaps
- Poor talent acquisition methods – lengthy and time-consuming, deliverable-based process, as well as poor and/or inaccurate communications
- Too much focus on what’s on paper and less on who they are and how they approach work – lacking a consistent and meaningful interview methodology
- Poor management personnel – ~ 80% of people leave their job because of their boss. The failure here is assuming that people who are good at their job, will also be good managing people. This is most often not the case. Proper and effective line management is critical to engagement, satisfaction, quality and output.
- Organizational over-confidence – ‘we are too well established, too large and too strong to fail, everyone should be honored to work here..’ mentality.
- System Rigidity – a large rigid organization, such as large box CROs is where creative thought leadership, flexibility and adaptability go to die. Some of the best talent who drive progress are creative, innovative thinkers, who will quickly leave when realizing their hands are tied and they cannot impart meaningful value. Value is tied to purpose, and who wants to spend most of their time and energy performing tasks without the feeling of bringing value. We become ‘valueless’ and leave.
- Evaluation and Compensation Inequity – from throwing money at those we feel the need to poach, without equalizing that value to those who already are dedicated to the company, to formulaic limits on both evaluations and compensation (directly tied). This creates a chain of non-merit based compensation which seemingly cannot be broken and the entire organization, including the client, ultimately pays. This also includes the topic of inequitable rewards. Many large companies, including large CROs create policies that ultimately do not truly connect value to reward. This assumed, almost enforced status of performance mediocrity (aka forcing the majority of the organization to land in the middle/average range to limit pay and advancement expectations). This again makes the talent feel their efforts and talent to be lacking in value. It does not make them want to work harder, quite the opposite. You either get complacency, or for the ambitious group, leakage.
As we tout our evolution from being a smaller, niche CROs, known for better understanding, valuing, and appreciating what the best talent can provide, we must ensure we do not compromise the qualities which innately facilitate our quality as a whole. It may sound cliché, but good clinical trials cannot be run without good people.
OncoBay was founded to challenge the failures of large CRO’s rigidity and mediocrity. We have the unique ability to not only attract top tier, innovative talent, which large CROs do not seem to either want or attract, but to also nurture, reward and retain it. In such, our clients also gain; quality, stable teams, efficiencies and cost savings.