Zs Associates: Sales Force Sizing

6 Pages Posted: 21 Oct 2008

See all articles by Robert E. Spekman

Robert E. Spekman

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business

Arya Kalla

Capital One Bank


This case describes a consulting firm that is assisting a pharmaceutical company as it faces a strategic question regarding how to determine the size of its sales force. An Excel file containing two of the case exhibits is included and is available by contacting sales@dardenbusinesspublishing.com. A related Technical Note entitled "A Note on Sizing the Sales Force" (UVA-M-0746) is available that describes several approaches one could employ to size a sales force; it addresses the advantages of each approach as well as the weaknesses.



Rev. Jun. 4, 2012


In the summer of 2006, Nick Thomas faced the task of impressing his superiors at ZS Associates and securing a full-time job offer with the firm before he finished his summer internship. He had taken the lead on many extra initiatives, such as brown-bag training (a form of employee-initiated training) and organizing the intracompany tennis tournament. But for obvious reasons, he was most concerned about completing his project with high quality in the required time frame.

Thomas was working on a sales force sizing project and knew the different methodologies that could be used to arrive at the proper sales force number. His client, Santoze Pharmaceuticals Inc., was about to launch a drug named Obetor that had the potential to be a blockbuster, and had approached ZS to help them determine the most appropriate sales force size. Thomas's first internal meeting with the ZS principal on the project was in a week, and he thought it might be useful to prepare a rough estimate of the optimal sales force size using available historical data.

Company Background

. . .

Keywords: marketing strategy, sales force management, sales force design, business to business marketing

Suggested Citation

Spekman, Robert E. and Kalla, Arya, Zs Associates: Sales Force Sizing. Darden Case No. UVA-M-0745, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1280636

Robert E. Spekman (Contact Author)

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business ( email )

P.O. Box 6550
Charlottesville, VA 22906-6550
United States
434-924-4860 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.darden.virginia.edu/faculty/spekman.htm

Arya Kalla

Capital One Bank

6890 Elm Street
McLean, VA 22101
United States

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