5 signs your launch team is not collaborating effectively

  • Andre Moa
  • 14 Nov 2014
  • 5 minute read



undefined-484894-edited.jpgCollaboration is one of the key pillars of a successful pharma launch - without an effective strategy for working together, teams will struggle to gain reimbursement and launch their medicines on time.


Without a coordinated, collaborative approach, teams will find it difficult to align the efforts of their global and local teams, and functional teams will remain siloed. With a lack of visibility across the organisation, it is no surprise that delays and obstacles go unnoticed or are not dealt with, adversely affecting your product launch.


To ensure your team isn’t falling victim to these roadblocks, here are five warning signs to watch out for:


Sign 1: Different brands use different tools and trackers


This is a good indication that a collaborative approach to launch readiness does not exist in the organisation. Often a common framework will have been introduced at some point, but different brand teams in different therapy areas end up adapting this framework over time, so that whatever commonality originally existed is lost.


The result is that a best practice approach to launch readiness is not followed. This can compromise the quality of your launch planning and execution. It also means that different teams are wasting time re-inventing the wheel, tailoring tools and trackers, duplicating effort and failing to add any value. What they really should be focusing on is the quality of the content that goes into the plans that reside in these tools. This divergence in launch tools and trackers used between different launch teams indicates that collaboration across brands and therapy areas is lacking.


Collaboration is only truly possible if there is a compatibility of technology. A digital tool can bring everyone together in one place, and ensure teams are working from the same overall framework, while allowing enough flexibility for each team to address the particular needs of their brands/markets. A digital tool also helps to maintain visibility by integrating data – so not all your essential information is spread over multiple Excel files.


Discover 6 reasons your launch planning and tracking effort will fail with Excel in our previous blog post.


Sign 2: Global team members spend too much time chasing markets for updates


A key symptom of lack of collaboration is that global teams end up chasing individual market teams for updates. This lack of real-time data and visibility of status demonstrates that the information isn’t getting from country to global teams through the usual processes – the entire data flow is restricted.


As a result, your global team does not have the visibility they need for decision making. What’s more, this strategic decision making is hampered by the fact that highly-experienced global staff are spending their time on admin tasks of collecting, processing and consolidating data.


Sign 3: Country launch plans don't reflect global launch plans


We spoke in a previous blog about the necessity for all launch planning staff to be singing from the same hymn sheet. After all, if your plans aren’t aligned then how can teams execute the global strategy effectively?


Global and local launch plans ideally need to be integrated into one system, to ensure alignment and provide the required visibility across the organisation. In such a digital system, relevant data from global plans should cascade seamlessly into local plans, to ensure that country teams have full visibility of status and timelines of global milestones that affect their local plans. Dependencies between global and local plans also need to be managed in a shared online planning tool, so that alerts and workflows can run efficiently and be automated as much as possible.


Sign 4: Bottlenecks and delays at country level are identified too late


A lack of real-time data and visibility of launch readiness status at the country level will prevent potential delays from being identified and addressed early on. Limited data flow between global and local plans, and lack of visibility across functional areas at both global and local level, prevents coordination of actions and collaboration on tasks because team members are simply not aware of what is going on. Discover which other critical challenges teams are facing in regards to optimisation their launch strategy in our previous blog post.


Visibility is about making each responsible task owner in each market aware of the tasks going on in other functional areas, and at a global level, that might have an impact on their timeline. By alerting them to potential issues early on, before they happen, they can address these in a proactive and timely manner, rather than in a reactive damage-limitation mode.


Sign 5: Teams have limited visibility of what is happening in different functional areas


Cross-functional alignment is critical in any launch team. Teams from different functional areas need to pull in the same direction, and doing so requires full visibility of activities and status across the launch organisation, especially where they’ve been assigned tasks that are dependent on activities in other functional areas.

However, functional teams are often struggling to break out of the silos that conventional organisational structures and processes have reinforced over many decades. Yet, to effectively collaborate, teams need to share data and info across functional areas so they can all work together and support each other.


One way of breaking down these silos is by implementing a collaborative launch tool that integrates and shares information and data across teams efficiently and within the context of the tasks that each team member is responsible for. In this way all team members across functional areas have full visibility of related activities in other ‘silos’ and with all the information at their fingertips, cross-functional collaboration becomes embedded.


The right digital pharma launch tool can really help make collaboration possible. With a single system to plan, track, communicate, collaborate, and report from, your launch planning teams can overcome these five challenges and become more efficient and effective.


Where should you start? Begin by ensuring your team is working together effectively by downloading this guide for improving your approach to launch planning and tracking.


You may well reach the same conclusion as the rest of our clients – that a smart digital tool is the linchpin of successful collaboration. For more information take a look at the Tribeca® Knowledge bespoke launch planning tools and sign up for a free demo today.


TRiBECA® Knowledge provides cloud-based tools loved by the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies. Our SaaS platforms help manage launch readiness, market access, tenders and capability - while promoting collaboration, efficiency, and ease of use.

Our flagship SmartLaunch® product brings the entire launch team together to drive collaboration, transparency and efficiency across the launch programme. SmartAccess™ gives you a complete view of reimbursement status, timelines and data across countries and your product portfolio. Alongside SmartPipeline™, SmartTender™, SmartSkills™ and SmartKnowledge™, our software solutions give you the tools you need to effectively commercialize your pharma products while building a robust organisational knowledge base.

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