Background and Challenge

A pharmaceutical company asked L.E.K. to assess the performance of Medical Affairs function and design an optimal end-state to better support its expanding pipeline and launch portfolio.  The Client also believed that its Medical Affairs function needed to be more externally focused on customers’ needs to achieve this goal and asked us to incorporate this ‘going-in’ hypothesis in its work.

Approach and Recommendations

We worked closely with the Client team to identify the underlying issues facing the Medical Affairs function. In parallel, we conducted an extensive benchmarking study to understand best practices at peer companies’ Medical Affairs functions and develop hypotheses as to the optimal end-state for our Client’s organization.  We subsequently led multiple client workshops to communicate findings from its research and analyses, drive consensus on the proposed end state and build a road map to support implementation of the proposed reorganization.


We designed a ‘best-in-class’ Medical Affairs function to prepare our Client for the evolving needs of its growing business. Core to this effort was improved reporting lines and accountability within the function and greater external focus so that it was better prepared to launch new products in collaboration with the Client’s commercial functions. Over the longer-term, our work helped our client prepare and execute product launches more effectively, thus contributing significantly to the success of its business.

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