ZS at a Glance

Uppers

  • "Culture, people, management."
  • "Depth of content, client impact, collaborative culture."
  • "Learning a lot about data and analytics."
  • "Quick promotions."

Downers

  • "Constant growth requires frequent change, fairly demanding hours."
  • "Lack of predictability."
  • "Coordinating with offshore teams leads to late nights."
  • "Not known outside of specific industries."

The Buzz

  • "Doing very well in the healthcare space."
  • "Well-known in healthcare for sales management."
  • "Mainly pharmaceutical clients."
  • "Big firm with a narrow focus."

About ZS

ZS is the world's largest firm focused exclusively on helping companies improve overall performance and grow revenue and market share, through end-to-end sales and marketing solutions-from customer insights and strategy to analytics, operations and technology. Founded in 1983 by Kellogg School of Management marketing professors Andris A. Zoltners and Prabhakant Sinha, the firm now employs

more than 4,500 ZS professionals in 22 offices worldwide who draw on their deep industry and domain expertise to deliver impact for clients across multiple industries. 

While it has served more than 700 companies since its founding, ZS is no fly-by-night operation. The firm still counts its first client from 1983 as a client today. In fact, most of its business comes from returning clients, who appreciate ZS's niche services. Most are global 500 companies, although the firm does work with a number of midmarket, small and startup companies, hailing from a range of industries. While 90% of ZS's clients work in the pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and medical products and services space, the rest hail from the high tech, energy, telecommunications, transportation, consumer products and financial services sectors. 

Helping clients move forward

The firm's core capabilities are in marketing, sales and operations. The marketing practice area works with clients to help them understand and develop the capabilities they need to commercialize a new product or service, and to improve the performance of their existing products and services. ZS's offerings include assistance with forecasting (anticipate customer demand), customer insights (know your customer), segmentation (divide and conquer your customers), value proposition (look good for your customer), marketing mix (reach your customer in multiple ways), and marketing performance measurement and optimization (give customers what they want, when they want it). 

The sales practice area complements the marketing practice, working with clients to design, implement and manage their sales infrastructure, all in an effort to maximize clients' sales effectiveness. Services include go-to-market strategy and sales channel development (how will you sell your product?), sales force design (who will sell your product?), sales force effectiveness (how good are they at selling it?), customer targeting (who will buy your product?), territory management (where will you sell your product?), sales compensation (how will you motivate employees to keep selling your product?) and sales performance management (who is selling how much?). 

The operations and technology segment provides the left-brain analytical side to sales and marketing. The firm has long been a leader in the use of data to drive commercial strategy-its insights in the field go back fully 30 years (see below). As the volume of data continues to grow, and is increasingly being recognized as a critical business issue by clients, ZS has a range of solutions for clients-from services such as data science support and business intelligence solutions to mobile technology services and software tools for developing cost-effective sales and marketing operations. The firm also provides analytics process outsourcing services through its ARTIS™ solution, either on an ongoing or temporary basis, to clients to help them focus on their core business. 

A sweet suite

ZS began developing sales- and marketing-specific software in 1983, with the creation of the first personal computer-aided territory mapping system. By 2008, it had created 12 standalone software products, which were then integrated as one unified sales and marketing software platform: the Javelin software suite. 

The suite includes three core modules: the "sales planning and execution" module helps design smarter, more profitable sales territories and keep them optimized in the changing market, as well as perfecting sales plans from the field and helping reps manage their accounts with precision. The "incentive compensation" module helps clients to automate sales compensation calculations, establish fair and motivating sales goals, refine them at a local level and systematically define objectives across all levels of sales. Finally, a separate module helps integrate the Javelin suite with existing data systems. 

A class act

Throughout the years, ZS has kept up its ties with the Kellogg School of Management-where Zoltners is a Professor Emeritus, having taught at the school for years-as well as with the Indian School of Business, where Sinha teaches courses on sales force effectiveness. The firm-including its co-founders-offers executive education courses at these and other business schools on sales force performance, sales force incentive planning and other special executive-level programs.

IN THE NEWS

May 2017

ZS introduces AWS-powered end-to-end analytics platform for life sciences industry

ZS expanded its big data and analytics offerings with the release of an enterprise-grade, end-to-end analytics platform for the life sciences industry. REVO Analytics™ is an ecosystem of preconfigured business solutions and tools that span the entire analytics spectrum - from data ingestion and management to advanced analytics and visualization. "We've combined our decades of experience in the health care industry, our advanced technology capabilities and our sophisticated analytics techniques to create an enterprise-wide big data solution for life sciences," said Dharmendra Sahay, managing principal of integrated analytics solutions at ZS. "REVO Analytics is preconfigured to address the needs of life sciences organizations and supports numerous roles through business applications, the analytics workbench, and reusable data and analytics stencils. The platform can also be configured to meet a company's unique analytics consumption requirements."

June 2017 

Associate Principal named to Rising Stars of the Profession

Consulting Magazine named ZS's Christina Corridon to its "2017 Rising Stars of the Profession" list. Corridon is a leader in ZS's oncology practice and helped launch the firm's biosimilars vertical. She also leads the firm's competitive scenario planning initiative and plays a key role in the Women's Leadership Initiative in ZS's Boston office. "Christina has distinguished herself with her initiative, creativity and client service, and is a deserving winner of this award," said Chris Wright, managing director of ZS. "She is a leading voice in our oncology and biosimilars practices and a trusted partner for her clients. I'm confident she will continue to provide innovative solutions to client challenges and be an integral part of ZS in the years ahead." 

July 2017 

ZS's new book tackles top sales compensation challenges

To meet the needs of today's more informed, connected and socially influenced buyers, companies are altering their sales processes and implementing many changes to their sales forces. As a result, sales compensation plans need to adapt. Experts from ZS draw from more than 30 years of experience to tackle the most pressing incentives challenges today in the new book, "Sales Compensation Solutions." The authors also address persistent sales compensation challenges such as quota setting and change management.

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ZS

One Rotary Center
1560 Sherman Avenue
Evanston, IL 60201
Phone: (847) 492-3600
Fax: (847) 864-6280

Stats

  • Employer Type: Private
  • Managing Director: Chris Wright
  • Founding Director: Andris Zoltners
  • Founding Director: Prabhakant Sinha
  • 2017 Employees: 4,600

  • Major Departments & Practices
    Product Development
    Product Marketing
    Research & Development Excellence
    Marketing Execution
    Resource Planning & Deployment
    Sales Compensation
    People & Performance

Major Office Locations

  • Evanston, IL(HQ)

    Boston
    Chicago
    Los Angeles
    New York
    Philadelphia
    Princeton
    San Diego
    San Francisco
    Toronto

    Barcelona
    Frankfurt
    London
    Milan
    New Delhi
    Paris
    Pune
    São Paulo
    Shanghai
    Singapore
    Tokyo
    Zurich