Medical Marketing’s Top Talent Challenges in 2017

Getting Top Talent Vs Keeping Top Talent

medical marketing's top talent challengesThe annual MM&M’s “Mind Your Talent 2017” special edition informs employers, talent scouts, and those seeking to advance about the top talent and workforce trends in medical and pharma marketing. Below, we share our President & CEO Ross Toohey’s answers on how we attacked several of the top talent recruitment and retention challenges.

Medical Marketing’s Top Talent Challenges

The report notes the top job-changing motivations are advancement potential, environment, culture, and, as always, money. As the industry adapts to a new digital way of doing business, the editor’s note focused on the bottom 15% whose job satisfaction levels were on the low end of the scale: “There was a core group who seem disenchanted: Overall, 16% said they want out of the industry altogether.” In reference to women in the medical marketing industry, the report recommended “[The industry] needs to be sure that more women advance to the highest echelons, not leave them frustrated and looking to get out.” (Just an FYI the 2e Creative Executive Leadership Team is 40% female. #justsayin)

See how we tackle the medical marketing’s top talent challenges and try to make sure our employment experience is a positive one.

From MM&M’s “Mind Your Talent 2017”

What is the current state of the so-called talent war in the agency world? What are the most active fronts, so to speak?

Toohey: Cultivating an agency talent profile in today’s market is simultaneously wonderful and infuriating. And things aren’t slowing down. From our perspective, there are really two major drivers behind it all.

First, there’s the changing face of the workforce, where agencies are scrambling to adapt compensation, benefits, training, and cultural engagement to the evolved preferences of millennials. Slow-moving agencies with stale corporate cultures will continue to see key talent fleeing for more nimble, attractive environments. Leaning on higher compensation alone to attract and retain talent will both lure the wrong type of people and increase costs, and clients will pick up on that pretty quickly.

Second, there’s the perpetually expanding universe of digital, and the resulting stresses it places on agencies to cram digital talent into an oddly defined box. With the proliferation of digital strategies, media, and channels, finding talent with the brain and muscle to be fluent and effective in the digital space is a mindcrushing task. Add to that any sort of fluency in regulated healthcare and it’s like discovering a Mickey Mantle rookie card in your grandfather’s tackle box. Recruiters know that.

What are some of the changes your agency is making in response to more heated competition for A-list talent, whether in terms of compensation or capabilities or anything else?

Toohey: The recruiting process doesn’t end when someone accepts an offer. In fact, it’s never really over. It’s easy to fall into the trap of wooing someone to join your agency and setting them up with a desk, then assuming they’re a done deal.

At 2e, we’ve embraced an engaging cultural mission to drive change for brands that shape the world. We’ve created new programs to help team members learn, grow, and explore the world. Our VP of creative, Lynda McClure, recently launched a mandatory program where the entire agency is assigned a weekly creative challenge designed to encourage entrepreneurship and cross-pollination.

What is your best-case scenario for the healthcare and pharma marketing business in 2017?

Toohey: Our core focus is connecting people with therapies and technologies that enhance life. We’d love to see trends toward patient education, engagement, and empowerment continue. It’s what we do best.

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