case study oneBudgeting and Resource Allocation


Effective budgeting requires knowing your internal and external customers and leveraging key strengths while not losing sight of your weaknesses.

Crafting a clinical trial site budget is an unenviable job. As budget scrutiny tightens across every corporate function, most managers in clinical operations endure multiple rounds of building, defending, and revisiting their budgets before ultimately arriving at a viable resource allocation plan.

While the easiest budget to defend is one that includes the fewest risks, this approach rarely leads to proper resource allocation. Innovative organizations build budgets that balance both known and unknown demand drivers, evolving with the needs of the clinical trial.

For the most part, resource strapped companies with highly truncated timelines for achieving results coupled with human capital constraints haphazardly strike budget line items. Unfortunately, and as a result, they are likely to do less with less. But some options exist, including the following tactics:

Solid like a rock. Ensure that the clinical trial financial plan is solid and aligns with the clinical trial
design. Bottom line:

  • LITMUS aligned the clinical trial financial plan to the clinical trial design and eliminated non-essential line items; and
  • LITMUS designed a budget/resource allocation tool.

Measureable outcome: a 25% cost savings.

Define buckets. Ensure that budgets aren’t “padded” with extraneous line items which inflate budget projections and actuals. Bottom line:

  •  LITMUS defined budget line items before engaging with vendors during clinical trial site identification and selection; and
  •  LITMUS managed client budget by controlling high cost touch points such as contract negotiations with vendors.

Measureable outcome: a 10% cost savings.

Keep it simple. Never underestimate the power of training and development. Training should start at the pre-conception stage of the protocol design. Executing on an executive leadership strategic plan on time and under budget entails clearly understanding bench strengths and weaknesses. Bottom line:

  • LITMUS developed a simple to-the-point training program for middle-management and front-line employees across functional groups based on Executive team’s strategic goals; and
  • LITMUS developed a simple to-the-point training program for clinical trial sites that incorporated key strategic imperatives from the Executive team.

Measureable outcome: All workgroups involved in the clinical trial worked toward one common
goal minimizing duplication of services and minimizing costly mistakes—priceless.

To learn more about these tactics or to receive additional information, please contact us at: LITMUS