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What if your people were the unrealized answer to value creation?

As M&A activity increases in life sciences, protecting and prioritizing leaders and key employees will speed real change.

In brief
  • Execute a corporate separation with people in mind
  • Successfully manage the people side of a corporate separation
  • Avoid risks of not effectively managing the people side of change

Life sciences companies continue to leverage organizational spin-off transactions to grow their core capabilities, refine their mission and capitalize on specific market opportunities. While essential to realizing the full benefits of a transaction, too often our people are left out of the equation. Results from the EY Transformative Leadership Survey 2022 highlight that when leaders put humans at the center of their transformation, the likelihood of a successful outcome can increase 2.6 times. It is essential to keep the emotional experiences of your employees in mind to drive the necessary engagement for transformational success. This is particularly important for life sciences companies in order to protect business continuity and brand reputation and ultimately cultivate continued trust and support from regulators and health care providers. By effectively managing the people side of the change, a corporate separation can become an opportunity to further enable a shift in attitudes, behaviors and culture from the ground up and generate understanding of the value of the transition internally and externally.


But how do we make this objective a reality when planning for a complex spin-off? As you navigate a corporate separation and manage the people side of the change, we have identified five critical success factors:


  1. Establish fit for purpose change management governance structure
  2. Engage and retain leaders and employees critical to deal success
  3. Enable people managers to communicate to impacted employee populations
  4. Prepare employees by communicating what they can expect along the journey
  5. Empower employees by anticipating and addressing their questions

Read Guiding your people through a corporate separation

Article authors include:

  • Jenn O’Krancy, Principal, Ernst & Young LLP

Article contributors include:

  • Arda Ural, Principal, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Kim Turner, Principal, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Ben Shirley, Principal, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Dhruv Saran, Senior Manager, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Maura Kelly, Senior Manager, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Julia Reitenbach, Manager, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Alex Darling, Manager, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Kristi Tran, Manager, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Taylor Kite, Manager, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Kate Sygrove, Manager, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Zoe Hernandez, Manager, Ernst & Young LLP


In an increasingly tight labor market, neither the value of your people nor the fragility of the employer-employee relationship during times of transition can be overstated. It’s essential both for the day-to-day operations of any business and during the “pressure cooker” conditions of a transaction to keep people at the center of your transformational policies, processes and procedures. By communicating and engaging well with employees throughout the corporate separation journey, your company will emerge stronger and more competitive in the market.

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