Challenge: How to Develop a Shared Strategic Overview of Meetings with Officials
Engaging with elected officials and key stakeholders forms an integral part of the work of any trade association. This is no different for the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA), whose public affairs efforts involve regular interactions with officials from the European Parliament, the European Commission and the Council of the EU.
Initially, EFPIA recorded engagements and related information using Excel spreadsheets. With different teams working from separate spreadsheets, it soon became complex and time-consuming for team members to locate the insights needed to support their day-to-day activities.
“[The main challenge was] there was no one, unique internal database. Teams internally used different excel files with stakeholder mappings, but it is very difficult and time-consuming to go and check 10 different tables from 10 different files,” said Martina D’Amore, Junior Public Affairs Manager at EFPIA.
EFPIA recognised the opportunity to create a single source of truth where team members could maintain a shared overview of their stakeholder interactions. Not only would this optimise information flows, but it would avoid any potential for duplication of efforts to arise.
Solution: Tailor-Made Public Affairs Software Combining Meeting Logging with Automated Visual Reporting
The tool that EFPIA chose to help join the dots between team members’ activities was Quorum European Union. With an aggregated database of publicly available information for over 40,000 EU officials and staff, as well as the capacity to log meetings on desktop or on a mobile app, Quorum empowers EFPIA to maintain a centralised record of their engagement with key contacts — all in a matter of clicks.
“I log the meeting, and normally I also put the topics for discussion and colleagues present in the meeting,” said D’Amore. “The easiest [Quorum function] is the meeting logging. It takes me two seconds, it’s super easy.”
All of this creates a single source of truth for EFPIA’s public affairs team. By logging interactions and meetings, EFPIA has been able to build institutional knowledge around engagement with key officials — which helps team members get up to speed on their colleagues’ activities within seconds.
“Quorum has enabled us to better track interactions with the institutions on key EFPIA Board priorities and […] build an institutional memory of EFPIA interactions easily accessible by all teams,” said Elizabeth Kuiper, Executive Director of Public Affairs at EFPIA.
In addition, the ability to aggregate data on the impact of EFPIA’s engagement — and to communicate that visually to stakeholders to prove return on investment (ROI) — has been game-changing for the team.
But where does Quorum deliver real added value for EFPIA? Through Dashboards: reports that translate efforts into impact with clear, data-backed visuals. Dashboards are completely customisable for every team member, issue area, or region, and are auto-updating — and by keeping the metrics that matter in one place, EFPIA team members no longer need to search for information each time. All of this allows the organisation to easily keep a pulse on engagement strategies and uncover opportunities to increase their impact.
Impact: Building Institutional Memory for an Enhanced Engagement Strategy
Quorum has empowered EFPIA to centralise relevant insights from their stakeholder engagement efforts into a robust, single source of truth that builds institutional memory for the association. In turn, this has allowed them to strengthen key relationships and maximise the impact of their interactions.
This system has made internal reporting much simpler and more efficient. With valuable insights on stakeholder interactions stored all in one place, EFPIA can quickly and accurately provide tailored updates to their members on the issues they care about. This workflow not only delivers value to members, but also helps EFPIA learn from their meetings and work faster to share critical knowledge when it matters most.
“If [members] come to me [for support with a briefing or talking points] I know where to go, I know what to look for. So, I provide them with the right information in a timely manner,” said D’Amore.
As a result, leveraging Quorum’s integrated tools has enabled EFPIA to work smarter and move faster by providing a single, accessible location for the entire team to compile the information that supports their day-to-day work. So, how would Kuiper sum up the value of Quorum for the organisation?