Boosting DT’s US presence
By Dennis van Rooij and Tim van Tongeren
DT Consulting was born and raised in Europe – both a founders’ standpoint and a client perspective. We’ve always understood the particularities of the European markets and thrived in that region, building a very good footprint.
Increasingly, client work also comes directly from the US as centralization continues to be pushed to a global scale, and results delivered in Europe attract attention of their US business leaders. The larger transformational projects and global programs that clients are choosing to award us makes now the ideal time to boost our presence in the US.
Focusing on how we can serve the US market more comprehensively starts with the people we need and the experience we want to give them. As we begin scaling the company, we’ve defined our offer for US candidates to be above the benchmark, ensuring we’re attracting the right talent. From giving our US employees 25 days’ vacation, not including public holidays, to providing them with top tier medical insurances and 401k at 6%, we are starting as we mean to go on – by putting our greatest asset first, our people.
This significant behind-the-scenes work has laid the foundations for our latest expansion boost with a range of appointments including a new member of our global leadership team, a digital transformation manager level, and a dedicated US talent acquisition lead. In the next quarters we will keep focusing on meeting our client demands through a number of other exciting US roles still to fill.
The coming nine months or so probably won’t see us open a specific separate office in the US, as we follow quite a lean model for growth in the immediate future. Instead, as we’ve been doing on our regular stateside trips since borders began opening up, we’ll leverage the Princeton facilities of our parent company Indegene and will bring people together on a need basis, possibly rotating meetups to where consultants are located in the US.
Our new US starters will have regular opportunities to meet up in-person. As a lean and very modern business, we are very much believers in the hybrid model of working, just as we believe face-to-face interactions are also a vital way to solve certain problems and create connections, build relationships, and spark new ideas: we have seen this work in recent trips to Bangalore in India and frequently we fly our consultants into the London office for get-togethers.
The expansion of our presence in the US is a sign that DT is even more global. As our operations expand it will be easier and quicker for clients to sit down with independent advisors to get a steer on decisions or project updates, locally.
In turn, this will bring more opportunities to our team based in the UK, mainland Europe and India. These might include expanding our solutions into areas that are attuned to the nuances of the US market. It will certainly continue our global approach to building practices that are very close to the core themes of what our clients are struggling with.
At the highest level, this is the impact of digital technology and innovation on pharmaceutical businesses, primarily their commercial operations of sales and marketing, but increasingly also clinical and medical affairs operations.
So, for Commercial Strategy, we look at the opportunities and challenges digital technology and innovation can provide at the most abstract level of commercial operations – strategy, resourcing, organizational design, and operating models. Typically, this involves above-country-level leaders thinking about how to pursue the overall commercial strategy at scale and discipline at regional/local level, for example with a focus on product launches maximizing growth of existing portfolios through optimizing commercialization activities.
Following on from that, we look at the point at which commercial strategy can change the whole customer experience (CX), recognizing that the lives (and needs) of healthcare professionals and patients are changing in response to the impact of digital technology. As part of this, digital has moved from a bolt-on, to a key foundation of our CX engagement strategies, from front-end channels to back-end capabilities, while pharma organizations look at both industry and out-of-industry opportunities. There is a recognition that fundamentally what is required is to redesign the experience and the internal operating model to be customer-centric. That is what our CX practice does it they partner with pharma organizations to reimagine this relationship and the internal capabilities it requires.
Then, working backwards from that to what is needed to set up the desired customer experiences, our digital transformation (DX) practice helps companies to build those capabilities. As they do, they’re critically thinking about the effect these will have on the people who have to use those technologies and how processes or ways of collaborating will have to change as a result. Together with our colleagues at Indegene – who operate in the US already since 2005 – we see great opportunities for companies to improve their operational excellence in the domains of content, omnichannel orchestration and data.
These are exciting times for strategy consultancy in the life sciences sector. As we follow a very fast growth trajectory, particularly in the US, our people have an opportunity to be very close to the shaping of a global consultancy from the ground up, in a modern way. We do this by looking sharply to the employee experience, bringing very thoughtful views on diversity and inclusion that go far beyond the 50:50 gender balance of our leadership team.
We believe there is a better way of providing pharma consultancy – pushing pragmatism in forward-looking, transformative strategy – and that every person has the potential to be better, both professionally and personally. That’s driven by the application of our company values, which combine to create an environment where consultants can really blossom into becoming even better consultants to the benefit of themselves, the company, and our clients.
Anecdotally we are hearing more and more that our culture feels different from that of other firms in our existing markets. Hopefully this will also be a refreshing change for the US consulting market.