Glaxo to tweak unique US sales rep compensation plan amid complaints
- Three years after paying a $3 billion fine for improper marketing to physicians, Glaxo is tweaking a unique sales program launched four years ago know as the Patient First Program which had generated complaints within the company, WSJ reports.
- Jack Bailey, the new head of US pharmaceutical operations at GSK, is driving the change.
- The sales compensation program, known as the Patient First Program, was launched four years ago (and one year before the $3 billion fine) and has aimed to move the company from a volume-based compensation scheme. Earlier steps involved paying bonuses based on product knowledge and other factors that focus on the needs of physicians and patients.
Sales reps have not been happy about all components of the Patient First program, especially in light of their concerns that the unique compensation model may be contributing to declining respiratory and overall North American sales.
The traditional compensation model in the industry has been to link sales with compensation, with the understanding that reps would follow a set of internal and industry-driven guidelines. Given GSK's challenges and the fact that they are under a corporate integrity agreement until 2019, GSK has been trying to forge a pathway towards a new model. But amid a flurry of complaints, Bailey said that a company task force is "in the process of looking at more comprehensive options to simplify" the program.
For instance, management has appeased reps somewhat with a new policy in which their base compensation will no longer be based on simulated sales calls, which are used to determine bonuses.