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RAINMAKER 2014 Day 2 Recap

Day 2 at RAINMAKER 2014 was full of remarkable customer and partner sessions tackling everything from regulatory changes and contracting strategies in life sciences to demand generation and sales intelligence in high tech industries. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights.


High Tech Sessions

The first high tech panel of the day debated how sales can add value when customers already have all the information. Execs from Cirrus Logic, PMC-Sierra, Microchip Technology, Atmel and MarginXL weighed in on what are the drivers for sales force and effectiveness and how to make sales successful. Mitch Little, VP of Worldwide Sales & Applications, at Microchip said, “It’s no longer just what we sell. It’s what we, in sales, do that will make a difference.” Panelists agreed that face-to-face sales calls have changed. Sales teams spend less face-to-face time educating clients, but they find that it’s still the best way to close a deal. One point panelists made is that sales teams are often weighed down by inefficient processes that limit the time they spend face-to-face with clients.

The second high tech panel looked at whether it is fact or myth that sales organizations generate demand. Execs from Cirrus Logic, PMC-Sierra, Microchip and Atmel were joined by Ron Jones, CEO of N-Able Group for this session. ON Semiconductor, CSR, Atmel and Cirrus Logic convened for a panel on sales intelligence in the afternoon. Both of these panels gave attendees a great deal to chew on in terms of role of sale teams and channel partners, tools to use in demand generation process and gathering sales intelligence.

Mitch Little also held a session: Do annual contract negotiations still make sense? Little gave us an eye-opening and entertaining presentation on the annual negotiation game that everyone plays and in which the supplier loses. Little said that annual negotiations are broken, obsolete and the wrong focus, pointing out two ways to redirect the conversation with clients:

  • Co-creation of value added engineering·     Rebates vs up front volume price adjustment where client pay for reality not unmet commitments

Little also said that suppliers need to have the tough talks with their clients and sales teams, and just say no in some cases because bad business is bad business. While this is a scary proposition for many in the industry, the proof is in the pudding with Microchip’s success with this model.

Life Sciences Sessions

Our first life sciences panel The New Reality in Life Sciences featured execs from c2b Solutions, Stryker Health Care Systems, Cumberland Consulting Group and King & Spalding. Life sciences companies are dealing with constantly changing regulations, shifts in the competitive landscape and mergers & acquisition activities. At the same time, everyone is trying to lower health care costs, which means life sciences companies encounter pricing pressure from governments, payers and consumers. Panelists agreed that revenue management systems are instrumental in the face of these trends.

John Shakow, Partner at King & Spalding cast more light on the challenges facing pharma and medical devices manufacturers in his presentation on impending regulatory changes. Some key takeaways from Shakow include:

  •    Explosive growth in Medicaid utilization will increase participating manufacturers’ total liability.
  •    Participating manufacturers need to be vigilant in 340B price-setting and monitoring for overcharges and abuse through diversion, double-dipping and GPO restriction
  •    Premium assistance is a new form of manufacturer-sponsored patient assistance.

Mike D’Ambrosio, Client Director at c2b Solutions, presented on payer trends and impact on contracting strategies. He opened by looking at the complexity of the health care market place and what is driving reform. Pharma companies need to adjust and unite stakeholders across the organization to coordinate contracting, sales and marketing so that they can make better and faster business decisions for better market access.

Robert Matsuk, Executive Vice President, Life Sciences Solutions at HighPoint Solutions shared his insight on integrating business process with strategic analytics to optimize profits. He focused on managed markets and pointed out the following challenges facing the industry:

  •    Organizational alignment around Managed Markets
  •    Data capture from disparate sources
  •    Better mapping between data sources
  •    Actionable, consistent and reliable metrics
  •    Robust statistical analysis at back-end
  •    Easy interpretation at front-end

Joseph Coppola and Dave Cannell at Deloitte Consulting offered their point of view on how to effectively monitor and analyze contract performance. Their presentation scrutinized the market pressures and modeling enablers that affect the contracting environment. They pointed out the organizational and operational challenges that need to be addressed in order to improve contract performance including:

  •    Integrating cross-functional data and improving its trustworthiness through appropriate governance and stewardship models
  •    Making it very easy for users at varying levels to consume information through visualization techniques and mobile technology
  •    Obtaining cross functional alignment on a core set of business performance metrics and measures
  •    Adopting a more “fact-based” approach and mindset to managing the business

Model N News from Day 2

Model N also announced the availability of two vertical-specific applications to unify CRM and Revenue Management, REVVY CPQ and REVVY Global Price Management, on the Salesforce1 AppExchange.

Companies in pharmaceutical, manufacturing, medical devices and semiconductor, and component manufacturing face the challenge to grow their revenues in a complex, global eco-system that is driven by sophisticated buyers who deploy global procurement strategies, multi-tier distribution channels and an increased regulatory environment. The integration of revenue management solutions with CRM is a strategic imperative to drive competitive advantage.

You can learn more about REVVY CPQ and REVVY Global Price Management here.

Though I’m not able to account for all of the insightful information shared at RAINMAKER 2014 in this blog post, it was an incredible couple days. We’d like to thank the sponsors, speakers and attendees for joining us in Savannah and sharing their experiences in Revenue Management. It’s an exciting time and we look forward to seeing you all next year!

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