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AstraZeneca was able to generate detailed audit trails using Kennect's ICM.


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AstraZeneca was able to generate detailed audit trails using Kennect's ICM.

AstraZeneca is a global, science-led, patient-focused pharmaceutical company. They are leaders in the convergence of science, data, and technology. 

Focused on creating the next generation of therapeutics using an array of drug modalities, AstraZeneca is leveraging its innovative science to create a more personalized, precise, and accessible healthcare experience. 

With over 600+ users, AstraZeneca was eager to automate their Incentive calculations. This need became more pressing when legacy systems hit a wall during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

In this study, we will explore how AstraZeneca navigated the complexities of the pharmaceutical landscape by harnessing cutting-edge automation technology to manage their incentive programs.

This case study will provide a detailed account of the challenges they encountered, the solutions they adopted, and the outcomes they achieved through incentive automation.


AstraZeneca’s system lacked a comprehensive Audit Record.

In the highly regulated world of pharmaceuticals, maintaining transparency and accountability is paramount. Large pharmaceutical companies are under constant scrutiny from regulatory bodies, and they must adhere to stringent compliance requirements. 

One critical aspect of compliance is tracking and reporting incentive compensation for sales representatives accurately. AstraZeneca faced numerous challenges in tracking and managing incentive compensation for its large sales force. 

Manual processes and spreadsheets made it challenging to maintain transparency, accuracy, and timeliness. Additionally, auditing these processes was a time-consuming and error-prone endeavor.

Complex calculations for multiple KPIs were being done on spreadsheets.

AstraZeneca had multiple teams, FTEs, SIP Admins, and Business Units. Every position has different KPI calculations and incentive systems which were managed by multiple people leading to errors in calculations. 

The compensation team had to manually calculate and verify individual sales representatives' commissions, bonuses, and incentives. This process was time-consuming, prone to errors, and lacked transparency.

The manual calculations often led to delays in payouts. Ensuring data accuracy across different databases and systems was a significant challenge.

There was a massive overhaul during the COVID-19 pandemic when KPIs had to be changed more frequently to keep up with the rapidly changing business environment. Spreadsheets simply could not keep up. 

Real-time visibility of ​incentives was not available for the reps and the compensation team.

AstraZeneca was relying heavily on spreadsheets to calculate incentives. This means they were calculating incentives only once, that is during payouts. Therefore, they were not able to properly communicate to their reps what their targets were, provide them with visibility of their incentives during the incentive cycle, and guide them on how they could earn more. This is common among companies that use legacy tools or spreadsheets.

Chances are, that more often than not, your reps don’t even know how much they are going to get paid until they receive their compensation. If these spreadsheets are error-prone, it becomes increasingly harder for your reps to trust the organization’s data and they are likely to resort to shadow accounting. 

This issue was not just limited to the reps, even the compensation team lacked visibility as they relied heavily on the MIS team for sales data and IC calculations, significantly slowing their operations.

Lookout Process and Decision-making Factors:

The pharmaceutical industry played a critical role in healthcare, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This also meant that they faced numerous challenges during this unprecedented period, from supply chain disruptions to clinical trial delays. 

It was amidst these challenges that AstraZeneca recognized the need to streamline and automate its incentive compensation processes to motivate and retain its sales force while ensuring compliance with rapidly changing regulations.

For a pharma giant like AstraZeneca, there are many choices out there. What made us stand out?

Well, there are many reasons for that. To start with, they found Kennect’s ICM tool simple and intuitive. 

The tool’s flexibility and ability to handle complex calculations were also deciding factors. 

During COVID-19, a lot of tools were brought in to handle the various KPIs. AstraZeneca had their doubts about whether our system would be able to integrate with their tools. Not only were we able to successfully integrate with these tools, we did this within 10 days. 

Once AstraZeneca decided to implement our solution, we started the on-boarding process and were able to go live in just 2 months

Since then, we've come a long way. Some of the outcomes we have achieved are:

Since then, we've come a long way. Some of the outcomes we have achieved are:

Final Thoughts:

AstraZeneca's decision to automate its incentive compensation process during the COVID-19 pandemic proved to be a wise investment. 

The implementation of a customized, data-driven, and cloud-based system not only improved accuracy and compliance but also supported a remote workforce and provided the agility needed to navigate a volatile market. 

This case study demonstrates how technology and automation can definitely help large pharmaceutical companies adapt and thrive during challenging times. 

AstraZeneca’s journey with us is a testament to this fact!