ZS Associates at a Glance

Uppers

  • "Strong market position -- lots of growth opportunity."
  • "Meritocracy, collegiate atmosphere, flexible work hours."
  • "Supportive management, flexibility to try new things, great people, great pay, challenging work."

Downers

  • "Long hours and demanding clients."
  • "My biggest complaint is the amount of time I spend on a laptop."
  • "Sometimes project work is repetitive and boring."

The Buzz

  • "Strong niche player."
  • "Great in their specialty."
  • "All sales [and marketing] consulting, won't get a well-rounded consulting experience."
  • "Good culture, well known, highly repetitive work."

About ZS Associates

ZS Associates is a global management consulting firm specializing in sales and marketing consulting. Founded in 1983 by Kellogg School of Management marketing professors Andris A. Zoltners and Prabhakant Sinha, the firm now employs more than 4,000 professionals who offer sales and marketing strategy and implementation, operations and technology consulting advice out of ZS' 22 offices in the Americas, Asia and Europe. 

While it has served more than 700 companies since its founding, ZS Associates is no fly-by-night operation; indeed, 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 Associates' 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 percent of ZS' 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' 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?). 

Finally, 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 Associates 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 Associates 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 

June 2015 

ZS receives Excellence in Sales Performance Management accolades from Anaplan

Anaplan, the planning cloud for sales, finance, operations and human resources, presented ZS the Excellence in Sales Performance Management award, which recognizes companies that deploy Anaplan's applications to help clients solve complex planning challenges across their organizations. ZS partnered with Anaplan in early 2014 to implement a variety of sales-focused data-driven applications in areas such as sales force design, compensation and rewards, targeting and territory management, and forecasting.

May 2015

Consulting Magazine accolades

Consulting Magazine named ZS' Pratap Khedkar as a "Top 25 Consultant" in its May 2015 issue. Khedkar, a principal in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania office, was recognized for excellence in leadership. Khedkar joined ZS in 2000 and leads ZS' global pharmaceutical practice. Key successes include growing ZS' pharmaceutical practice 50 percent within the last three years, driving impact in key sales and marketing areas for C-level pharmaco executives, and admiration from internal colleagues for being a 'maven among mavens' for tackling any problem head-on with passionate vigor. 

April 2015

ZS' Latest Book Helps Pharma Companies Make More Informed Forecasts

ZS Principal Arthur G. Cook, a global forecasting expert, released "Forecasting for the Pharmaceutical Industry: Models for New Product and In-Market Forecasting and How to Use Them" (second edition). Cook, a principal in the San Mateo, California office, joined ZS in1995 and leads the pipeline strategy practice. The book provides a thorough exploration of the forecasting process for current and in-development products, including biosimilars and orphan drugs. Cook addresses the challenges and (often) inaccuracies of forecasting, and outlines detailed approaches and algorithms on how to forecast successfully. 

November 2014 

ZS Selected as global five-year partner for Sales Operations Initiative

Global biopharmaceutical company AstraZeneca selected ZS as a strategic partner to support end-to-end go-to-market strategy across the company's U.S. commercial organization. Dedicated teams based in the U.S. and India will partner with AstraZeneca's commercial effectiveness group to help the pharmaco integrate its commercial strategy across marketing, sales and managed care using ZS' proprietary Javelin™ software. 

May 2014

Business Intelligence leader lauded

Consulting Magazine named ZS' Jeff Gold as a "Top 25 Consultant" in its May 2014 issue. Gold, a principal in the San Mateo, California office, was recognized for innovation and strategic thought leadership. Gold joined ZS in 2002 and is the managing principal of ZS' business intelligence practice. "Jeff is a strategic thought partner who keeps me up-to-date on market trends and helps me push and elevate my group - whether it be through strategies, technologies or processes," said the client nominator. "He always helps me see around the corner." 

April 2014

Principal named Consulting Rising Star

Consulting Magazine named ZS' Steve Love as a "Top Consultants Under Age 35". Love, a principal in the San Mateo, California office, was recognized for commitment to client service. Love joined ZS in 2002 and primarily focuses on quantitative and qualitative market research studies for some of the largest biotechnology companies in the industry. His expertise extends across additional ZS practice areas, including segmentation and demand estimation.

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ZS Associates

1800 Sherman Avenue
7th Floor
Evanston, IL 60201
Phone: (847) 492-3600
Fax: (847) 864-6280
www.zsassociates.com

Stats

  • Employer Type: Private
  • Managing Director: Chris Wright
  • Founding Director: Andris Zoltners
  • Founding Director: Prabhakant Sinha
  • 2015 Employees: 3,450

  • Employment Contact
    www.zsassociates.com/careers Email: careers@zsassociates.com

  • Major Departments & Practices
    Marketing

    Customer Insights

    Customer Segmentation

    Forecasting

    Marketing Mix

    Marketing Performance Measurement and Optimization

    Value Proposition

    Sales

    Business Intelligence

    Customer Targeting and Activity Planning

    Go-to-Market Strategy and Transformation

    Sales Channel Strategy and Management

    Sales Compensation

    Sales Force Design

    Sales Force Effectiveness

    Territory Management 

    Sales & Marketing Operations and Technology

    Analytics Process Outsourcing

    Data Scientist Services

    Information Management and Reporting Administration

    Mobility Services

    Sales Compensation Administration

    Territory & Account Planning Administration

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
    Shanghai
    Singapore
    Tokyo
    Zurich

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