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Role of Customer Relationship Management in Pharmaceutical Industry

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Customer Relationship Management plays a significant role in every business organization in the modern perspective. To identify the influence of effective CRM, the paper shall analyze the marketing system of a pharmaceutical company, the Hanmi Pharmaceutical. With this purpose, the report shall focus on two particular products of the company, i.e. Amlodipine and Clari. These are the top-selling products of Hanmi Pharmaceutical Corporation.

Amlodipine was created by Hanmi Pharmaceuticals, which achieved record sales in the year 2003. Its market share has reached 20% in the hypertension drug market. The company wanted to raise the awareness about Amlodipine brand through advertising it as nation’s hypertension drug (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

Clari is another primary pharmaceutical product of Hanmi Pharmaceutical Company. It is a Macrolide Antibiotic. It is one of the Hanmi’s first generic drugs which are used to cure the infection. It has benefited Hanami with robust sales and has ranked second in the sales of medicines after amlodipine. Its sales were above 10 million USD in the year 2009 (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

Role of Customer Relationship Management in Pharmaceutical Industry

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Hanmi Pharmaceutical

Hanmi Pharmaceutical Company was established in the year 1973, and from then onwards, it has grown remarkably. Hanmi incessantly showed a 20% to 30% growth rate since its establishment. It has emerged as one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in Korea. In the year 2008, its sales were more than 558 million USD. By developing good R&D strategy, Hanami Pharmaceutical has now been able to become a most competitive organization in the international market (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

Value of Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

CRM is an approach to create, expand and maintain customer relationship. It provides a vision to an organization to deal with their valuable customers. To meet these visions, the organization should implement effective CRM strategies that can increase the sales, develop the customer service, marketing and data analysis activities. Notably, the main objective of CRM is to maximize the beneficial relationship with customer for both dealer and customer. Hanmi’s high-quality marketing, as well as sales-based information technology, is considered as the main driving force, which has resulted in consumer growth.

Hanmi Pharmaceutical is dedicated to develop and provide innovative and valuable drugs to the customer to maintain a significant customer relationship. Hanmi Pharmaceuticals has been producing Cephalosporin products since 1987 and supplies products in over 40 countries. Hanmi has a wide range of customers in many countries of the USA, Europe and Asia. Their new manufacturing plant can produce many ‘innovative drug APIs and intermediates’ (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

Hanmi Pharmaceutical also maintains an efficient relationship with their global partners for exploring modified drugs such as esomeprazole, clopidogrel, clari, amlodipine and others. Hanmi is also working to find business partners in other parts of the world where they have not established yet (Hanmi, “News Archives”).

In the year 2007 Hanmi Pharmaceutical got “Forbes management first prize”. Forbes had put a high valuation on Hanmi because of adopting ERP IT technology and took social responsibility through a sustainable management approach. Hanmi Pharmaceutical always supports society to help customers live better in a cleaner environment. For instance, for children, Hanmi changed single cap medicine to double capped medication. It planned and promoted various strategies to upgrade the quality of life of customers with efficient CRM strategies (Hanmi, “News Archives”).

Customer Retention Program (CRP)

Often organizations develop programs which offer purchase inducement, such as discounts on any purchase from any company or “soft benefits” which is referred to as Customer Retention Program (CRP). A useful CRP includes plans and methods for identification and registration of the customer, customer segmentation, design reward system and program for maintenance operation. It provides simple observation of customer benefit and motivates them to purchase, repurchase, or purchase more regularly. Hanmi has developed the pharmaceutical market with low price product and high quality. It helped them to retain customers by lowering the price of the product and stopping the outflow of foreign currency. Hanmi also invests 80% in developing new drugs and 5% in developing generic products. It was a good and successful strategy to ‘shake’ the market by retaining customers towards Hanmi Pharmaceutical products (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

Hanmi Pharmaceutical performs various programs to create the right image and brand value compared to other competitors. The company participated in an NGO activity, whose objective was to support the children with a facial deformity. That business was conducted by ‘Global Care’, an NGO of Korea. The new NGO business of Hanmi Pharmaceutical has supported almost 1000 children with medical surgery, hospitalization, transportation, and pharmaceuticals since 1997. The company has been performing these activities for 11 years (Hanmi, “Supporting children with a facial deformity in Laos and Vietnam”).

Customer Service (Call Center)

Customer Service is the service to the customer before or after a product purchase. Good quality of customer service helps to maximize customer satisfaction. It is the prime consideration of every business. Every time a customer contacts through the call centre, the company receive an opportunity to improve the relationship with the customer by providing them excellent and satisfactory service. Every business needs to provide good customer care to find out what are the needs of the customer. Several factors contribute to customer satisfaction, such as:

  • Matching the product or service according to the customer needs
  • Accuracy of customer service
  • The efficiency and reliability in accomplishing customer orders
  • Promptness of response
  • Staff attitude and behaviour
  • Handling the complaint of the customer

Hanmi pharmaceutical is dedicated to provide support and render services to its customers. The call centre supports Hanmi pharmaceutical company with good ‘market research and Customer care Solution’. The call centre can provide Hanmi pharmaceutical information about valuable services to patients, salesforce, physicians and customers. Customer use call centre as a channel for marketing which includes information about any disease or provides product information to customer or physician. The call centre of Hanmi pharmaceutical promotes brand loyalty and drive sales force. It improves the effectiveness of selling efforts as well as saves cost. Hanmi pharmaceutical company has expanded its operation of a call centre for reaching customers and minimizes the cost of sale (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

Sales Force

A salesforce is a powerful asset for any organization. The importance of the sales force goes beyond the costs. It is entrusted with the company’s customers. It is an integral part of the product and the value which a firm brings to the consumers. In the case of the pharmaceutical industry, the physicians frequently rank the ‘Pfizer’ sales force at the top of the industry. Advertising, promotion, telemarketing, internet and value-added resellers play a significant role in creating sales. Individual companies rely entirely on the direct sales force, and others rely on the telephone call centre, while some sell through the internet.

Hanmi Pharmaceuticals also has an effective salesforce system. The company has approximately 600 salespeople which constitute its largest sales force in the hospital sector. Hanmi Pharmaceutical operates efficient and systematic training programs and generously supports its salespersons. “Amlodipine” is the perfect example of Hanmi Pharmaceutical’s sufficient sales force. “Amlodipine” is a generic version of Pfizer’s “Norvasc”. It covered almost 21% market share after three months of launching (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

Hanmi successfully develops the quality by closing all sales stores and allowing the sales representatives to do their work from home. Hanmi is the first company that applies the automatic sales system (SFA) in the pharmaceutical industry and has become successful. Hanmi has increased the sales by the possible use of mobile office to get any orders and payment. With the help of their new strategy, Hanmi expects sales of 1 Billion USD by the year 2015 and 3 billion USD by the year 2020 (Hanmi, “Hanmi at Glance”).

  • Hanmi. “Hanmi at Glance”. March 09, 2011. About Hanmi, 2004. <http://www.hanmipharm.com/about_glance.asp>
  • Hanmi. “Supporting Children with Facial Deformity in Laos and Vietnam”. March 09, 2011. Press Center, 2011. <http://www.hanmipharm.com/press_latest_view.asp?seq=572&board_id=7>
  • Hanmi. “News Archives”. March 09, 2011. Press Center, 2007. <http://www.hanmipharm.com/press_Archives_2007.asp>


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