ANALYSIS OF FACTORS INFLUENCING PHARMACEUTICAL SALES WORKFORCE ENGAGEMENT IN PHARMACEUTICAL MARKETING IN NIGERIA: A STRUCTURAL EQUATION MODELING APPROACH

THEOPHILUS EHIDIAMEN OAMEN

Abstract


In the pharmaceutical sales and marketing industry, human capital in terms of the sales workforce is essential to organizational success. However, there is a need to ensure that the task-environment is adequately resourced. The application of structural equation modeling (SEM) techniques such as factor analysis is necessary to further understand the underlying relevance of these factors. The objective of the study was to explore the factors influencing pharmaceutical sales personnel's work engagement in pharmaceutical companies using factor analysis. A cross-sectional, qualitative research study used an 11-item literature-guided questionnaire administered online to 406 medical sales professionals in the pharmaceutical supply network in Nigeria using random sampling. The factors evaluated include regularity and impact of training, marketing support, job security as perceived by the employee, incentives, reward for performance, and the prospect of promotion. Others include; minimal work stress, improved career prospects, and an enabling work environment provided for employees involved in pharmaceutical sales operations. The questions were rated on a 3-point Likert scale of 1=fair, 3=poor, and 5=good, to evaluate respondents’ estimation of factors. Exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was executed on the dataset and thereafter, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was conducted on the dataset using SPSS AMOS. Statistical significance was set at p-value < 0.05. The majority of respondents were male (72.2%, 293) and female (27.8%, 113). Respondents from Indigenous firms were predominant (249, 61.3%) compared to Multinational firms (157, 38.7%). There were 289 (71.2%) non-pharmacists and 117 (28.8%) pharmacists. EFA measures of adequacy were satisfactory (Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin=0.878, Goodness-of-fit=0.023, Cronbach alpha=0.859, Total variance explained= 51.6%) and produced a 2-factor solution consisting of 9-items (work factors=6, implied factors=3). CFA solution from EFA output produced satisfactory fit estimates (RMSEA=0.044, CMIN/DF=1.787, GF1=0.977, AGFI=0.957, RMR=0.029, and TLI=0.981). The final model had acceptable convergent and discriminant validity values. Job security was considered as the most influential factor (regression coefficient=0.859) and the least was work-life balance (regression coefficient=0.559). The study provided a validated tool to evaluate the pharmaceutical sales workforce’s estimation of the key factors influencing job performance. This serves as an operational template for strategic managers in pharmaceutical companies to improve employee’s perception of management support.

Keywords


Factor analysis, Exploratory factor analysis, Confirmatory factor analysis; Pharmaceutical marketing, normative; Healthcare, Structural Equation Modeling

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