Bob Lombardi is the director of policies and restrictions (PAR) data operations at MMIT. Lombardi joined MMIT five years ago as a contractor to aid in the development of MMIT’s Medicare project. From there, he was brought on as a full-time employee where he has worked as a project manager, team manager and director. As the director of PAR operations, Lombardi oversees the day-to-day aspects of all PAR data updates and has played an integral role in launching MMIT’s payer data team.

How did you join the company?

My education is in astrophysics and aerospace engineering. I spent the first eight years of my career building satellites for Lockheed Martin. When the plant closed and I was offered relocation, I decided not to move because I wanted to start a family. I made a big career change coming to MMIT, but the many opportunities and recognition of hard work that embodies this company’s culture has been rewarding.

What’s a typical day like for you?

I spend a lot of my day solving problems and answering questions. I oversee the managers of the different PAR teams and make sure they have everything they need to be successful. A lot of that is helping clear any blocking issues for them, but it also includes giving them tools and metrics to keep the teams organized and productive. I also do a lot of thinking, as I am responsible for helping design our operational processes and plan for what’s upcoming.

Can you describe how the data teams you manage fit into the company?

I oversee the PAR segment of the data operations, which is made up of several different teams. Our cycle team maintains our data and ensures it’s timely. Our new indications and prototype teams are focused on building newly sold indications and ensuring they become operational. The new-to-market team is focused on high profile drugs that have recently launched or will be launching into the market.

Can you describe the process for new employees coming onto the team? How they start out as temps, move into a full-time role, and advance within the company?

We strive to put people in the best position to succeed and grow within the company. As people grow into new positions, we often will backfill their role with a temp. Our temps are given the opportunity to learn our data and processes and eventually perhaps find their opportunities within the company.

We have several examples of people who started as temps and have moved up in the company. I’m one of them. I started as a contractor about five years ago. My first task was to build a process for the Medicare project and that turned into a project manager role, which turned into a manager role, which turned into a director role.

What are some of the larger projects you’re working on?

We’ve been working over the last six months to establish our payer data backbone, and we’ve built a team that is a mix of new temps and experienced employees to maintain that data. Their main purpose is to research and find new formularies and plans and make updates to our payer data structure based on their findings. We’ve recently introduced managed care organizations (MCOs) into our dataset, and the payer data team is responsible for maintaining the payer hierarchy as well. They’ll also be staying on top of some of the bigger merger and acquisition activity that is expected to occur in 2020.

What’s been your biggest victory with a client or the company in general so far?

The success of PAR has been a big victory. I started by managing the precursor to PAR when it became operational, but that process was project-based and not scalable. We analyzed the data and the processes and came up with a way to execute more efficiently. I helped design the data structure, tools, and team. The success of those efforts and our ability to evolve PAR has provided a lot of value for the business and our clients.

What’s your favorite part of your job?

There are a lot of fun aspects to my job, but the people I work with are my favorite. I work with so many talented people at each level who are all working hard toward the same goals.

What are the challenges of your role?

The pace at which the company is growing tends to create new challenges for operations, often in the form of adjusting or creating processes, tools and teams. Solving these challenges requires being creative, flexible and fast.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I have two small kids at home, and my life outside here is about enjoying my family. We like to travel and to cook, and when we can, try different local cuisine. We love just getting out with the kids and watching them grow up.