World Leading Pharmaceutical Company

World Leading Pharmaceutical Company

A world leading pharmaceutical company top talent within its contingent labour force to stay at the forefront of its marketplace. Kelly Services implemented a full managed service that not only sourced excellent candidates, but reduced time to hire, increased stakeholder satisfaction and saved £0.5m in the first year. 

The Client

One of the world’s largest and most admired pharmaceutical companies has been operating in the UK for almost 80 years and today has three major locations covering all key elements of the pharmaceutical value chain: Research & Development, manufacturing  and sales and marketing. These sites play a key role in the company’s development, both in the UK and globally. 

The Challenge

As a world-renowned company that is consistently voted one of the top workplaces on the planet, our client has high service standards and expectations of all its suppliers. Contingent workers (non-permanent temporary workers and contractors) are a key part of its workforce – being utilised to support their core permanent workforce, increase resource during peak workloads, deliver one-off projects and secure rare/key skills that are not commonly required on a permanent basis.

Being at the forefront of medical and scientific research requires exceptional workers within the labour-force, particularly those with key skills within the scientific, professional and engineering disciplines.

Historically our customer had utilised a number of different contingent labour workforce suppliers. In 2011 they found themselves in the situation of having a supply system that was confusing for its managers, had duplication of processes, was inefficient and ultimately was not delivering the quality of staff at the speed required.

Kelly was given the challenge of implementing a fully integrated supply service for all contingent labour throughout the UK, which would improve quality of workers, reduce time to hire, simplify processes, improve compliance, satisfy line managers and save direct and indirect costs. 

The Solution

In 2011, Kelly implemented a fully integrated managed service programme with the following key features:

  • Onsite-team consisting of a Programme Manager and a consultant at each Lilly UK location
  • Introduction of Fieldglass technology to manage the end-to-end recruitment processes and timesheet management for workers
  • All current and new workers were fully employed by Kelly and have a common benefits package and worker management process
  • Appointment of a specialist recruiter to focus on sourcing key/rare skills
  • Retention of the best specialist recruitment companies as a back-up for the provision of rare/niche skills. These key skill workers were then contracted via Kelly
  • Kelly’s dedicated Service Centre handles all payroll/administration duties to free up the on-site team to focus on recruitment and customer management
  • Harmonised security and employment screening to save administration time
  • Initial interviewing of all candidates by Kelly to provide a focussed shortlist for line managers
  • Provision of real-time management information including all workers assigned, roles open, interviews scheduled, time-to-hire.

The critical feature has been the appointment of service-focussed on-site Kelly Programme Managers who have dedicated themselves to delivering a consistently high standard of service to hiring managers. 


When the programme started there were 280 contingent workers. Demand from the business has grown this figure to nearly 500. Despite this significant increase in volume, Kelly has delivered the following service improvements:

  • On-boarding time reduced from 6 to 2 weeks
  • Over £0.5m savings from fees previously paid to recruitment consultancies
  • Significant improvement in customer satisfaction
  • The Kelly on-site manager was recognised with an “outstanding achievement” award for internal customer service at our client’s conference in 2013
  • The improved process and single contact point has allowed line managers to focus on project delivery, rather than contingent labour recruitment issues.

As a result of the successful performance, Kelly has been asked to manage the our customer’s student placement programme, a first for an external supplier. 


Industry: Pharmaceutical
Scale: 480 workers provided
Skills: All skills required (Administration, Logistics, Production, Engineering, Scientific, Clinical)
Service: On-site managed service for all temps
Basis: Ongoing. Extended to cover management of graduate programme.

 Pharma Info

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