Blog

Monthly Site Payments: A Disconnect Between Site and Sponsor Expectations

The site community is clamoring for monthly site payment terms. Delayed or inaccurate payments can be extremely debilitating to a site’s performance and ability to support a study. Consistent, accurate payments are critical to all strong business partnerships, so why is this so hard?

The reality is that Sponsors and CROs are committed to paying investigators accurately and quickly, but the amount of administrative work and re-work that is associated with invoice reconciliation makes doing this monthly unimaginable. In fact, according to a study conducted by the Metrics Champion Consortium (MCC), only 25% of Sponsors and CROs expect site payments to be made within 30 days of payment trigger.

The study also revealed that the most common cycle time target was in the range 31-45 days although the range was from 16 to 120 days. A global survey of sites by SCRS found that one of the major improvements sites require in relation to site payments from Sponsors and CROs is timely payment within 30 days.

Additionally, 50 percent of the Sponsors and CROs that participated in the study had a target of less than 46 days from payment trigger to payment made. Comparing this data with a CenterWatch survey that revealed only 13% of sites report being paid in less than 46 days, further illustrating the disconnect between payment performance and targets.

The most common target cycle time is somewhat above this goal at 31-45 days. However, nearly one-third of respondents have target cycle times of more than double the 30 days length required by sites.

By introducing standardization in invoicing and automating the payment process from trigger to execution, 30-day payments become a reality and even a more cost-effective process for all stakeholders. Cash flow and resources are optimized, and everyone goes back to doing what they do best – not tracking down liabilities and payment status.

Ryan Kelly
Written by Ryan Kelly

Ryan is the Product Manager for the eClinicalGPS, Greenphire's financial management technology for clinical trials.