A December 2014 Salary Survey Shows That CNPR Certified PharmaceuticalSales Reps Earn More Money With Fewer Sales Calls

Share Article

The average CNPR pharmaceutical sales rep is working less for that increased income! That is great news for pharmaceutical sales reps, physicians who rely upon these reps, and the entire industry in general.


The average sales rep is working less for and with increased income! That is great news for pharmaceutical sales reps.

Did you know that the average pharmaceutical sales rep earned $104,280 in total compensation in 2014, compared with $99,400 in 2013? This was an estimate made by a recent survey from National Association of Pharmaceutical Sales Representatives (NAPSRx; see "PHARMACEUTICAL SALES COMPENSATION OUTLOOK FOR 2015").

And according to NAPSRx, the average pharmaceutical sales rep is working less for that increased income! That is great news for pharmaceutical sales reps, physicians who rely upon these, reps and the entire industry in general. According to NAPSRx, sales reps are now expected to make 8 calls a day, down from nine, "which is surprising," says NAPSRx.

NAPSRx has an explanation: "This change probably means that pharmaceutical companies are being more realistic in their expectations as they are emphasizing the need for quality interaction with physicians," says Brad Sullivan from the NAPSRx.

"I give them kudos for being able to use 'realistic' and 'pharmaceutical companies' in the same sentence. More important than reality, however, is this focus on 'quality interactions with physicians' and what that really means." says Sullivan.

The NAPSRx Salary Survey Results provided an in-depth look into pharmaceutical sales rep salaries, job roles and responsibilities, verticals/segments, compensation extras and perks, budgets, and more. Key findings from 2014 include:

  • A 10% growth in Entry Level CNPR Pharmaceutical Sales Rep salaries with 27% of respondents reporting they have been in search for 0-3 years. The majority of these salaries were in the $48k-$73K range with some representation in the $70-$90K range.
  • Top salaries, including for VPs decreased, and the number of respondents in the top four salary ranges also decreased.
  • The total income across the board increased from $97,543 to $103,600.
  • New product launch marketing that included a combination of organic and paid grew by 11%. Additional growth was in search combined with email and online media efforts.
  • 64% of respondents report up through the Sales Department rather than the Marketing or R & D Department.

Conducted in December 2014, the 2014 survey was completed by 1470 respondents. Fielded by the NAPSRx CNPR Research Committee in conjunction with iSALARY team, the 20-question survey collected data from both in-house advertisers and third-party agency personnel, including CNPR NAPSRx members and nonmembers.

The NAPSRx® (National Association of Pharmaceutical Sales Representatives®) is widely known for its CNPR® Certification Training Program which provides vocational education for individuals looking to enter a pharmaceutical sales career. It is important for aspiring pharmaceutical sales applicants to include their CNPR®Certification on their resume to qualify for interviews. The CNPR® Certification provides necessary job prerequisites, such as: product/industry knowledge; selling guidelines and regulations; medical terminology; pharmaceutical selling techniques; drug sampling; physician detailing; introduction to pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics. The CNPR® Certification Program is available by correspondence directly through the NAPSRx® or can also be taken at over 300 universities/colleges in the United States.

CNPR® graduates should mention the training and post their CNPR® # on their resume. Pharmaceutical companies prefer to hire candidates who have received CNPR training as most companies prefer industry knowledge from their applicants. The CNPR® program is also available by correspondence directly through the association. The CNPR correspondence course is available directly through the NAPRx® and is also at numerous universities or colleges at a higher price. The NAPRx® looks forward to assisting members throughout your pharmaceutical sales career.

Upon successful completion of the training, each student will receive the Certification Mark of the CNPR®. The CNPR® represents a level of industry achievement and a demonstrated knowledge of pharmacology, medical terminology, pharmaceutical selling guidelines, physician selling techniques and industry standards. Pharmaceutical sales candidates who have this training will differentiate themselves from other individuals looking for open positions. CNPR® graduates should immediately utilize the NAPSRx® Career Center to apply for pharmaceutical sales positions. The CNPR is a federally trademarked certification you can earn by demonstrating the necessary knowledge in pharmacology, medical terminology, physiology, and regulations for selling pharmaceuticals. The CNPR examination is dedicated to increasing the professional level of NAPSR members and to developing meaningful and ethical standards fully accepted by both its members and members of the pharmaceutical community.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Brad Sullivan
+1 800-284-1060
Email >
since: 07/2014
Follow >
NAPSRx - National Association of Pharmaceutical Sales Representatives
since: 12/2013
Like >
National Association of Pharmaceutical Sales Representatives (NAPSRx)

Visit website