Pursuing Excellence: The Reassertion of the Customer

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Pharmaceutical supply chains must be brutal and go back to core principles, says Crimson & Co

The customer-producer relationship within the pharmaceutical supply chain is becoming so abstract that the producer is losing sight of the simple realities that underpin the business model, according to a new industry report from global supply chain consultancy Crimson & Co. This report highlights an alarming trend whereby those at the sharp end, particularly the people who are developing, making, selling or moving are continually becoming marginalised, abstracting them further and further from the customer. Programme management and complex organisational structures continue to consume excessive amounts of management time.

This report aims to highlight not only the critical challenges to reducing abstractions in the pharmaceutical supply chain, but also the changes which need to be made in order to reengage the customer-producer relationship. This includes:

  • Understanding organisation complexity, particularly the need for the internal business customer to have the same characteristics as a real customer
  • Reasserting the importance of content rather than process as a core management focus
  • Re-evaluating the project portfolio - a recent study showed that 95 per cent of all project time was spent simply coordinating activities. How can this be realigned?
  • Development of employee and organisational skill sets, particularly moving away from an obsessive focus on functional skills to one that embraces the customer


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