The study, blinded and conducted by an undisclosed third party, asked 308 European clinical investigators in 18 countries between January and February 2008 to rate their relationships and experience with nine of the top global clinical research organisations (CROs). Investigators rated only those CROs with whom they had worked in the last 18 months. The CROs were rated on 15 attributes by the investigator sites, including overall satisfaction, relationship building and allocation of resources for projects, including staff time. In the survey, 41 per cent and 43 per cent of sites respectively indicated that they were "extremely satisfied" or "somewhat satisfied" with their relationship with Quintiles. Two other unidentified CROs received similar ratings, with one being given a rating of 39 per cent for "extreme satisfaction" and 45 per cent for "somewhat satisfied", nd the other scoring 31 per cent and 51 per cent respectively. In addition, the clinical sites were asked to assign a percentage of resources - such as time spent on patient recruitment - that they had used on clinical studies with each CRO and Quintiles was allocated 38 per cent of resources by the sites surveyed, with the nearest competitor being assigned only 13 per cent. As for expected allocation of resources in the future, sites indicated that they plan to continue giving additional resources to Quintiles projects at about a 3:1 ratio over other CROs, the firm boasted. Moreover, when investigator sites were asked: "Which provider works hardest to develop a relationship with you/your site?", Quintiles was named by 49 per cent of respondents, with the closest competitor being named by only 10 per cent. Janos Filakovsky, Quintiles' vice president and managing director, Eastern Region and Middle East, said, "Our continuing efforts to build strong relationships ultimately lead to more efficient use of time and resources, and that makes our customers happy. The end goal is more accurate feasibility, faster recruitment and safer patient management in clinical trials." Quintiles, the world's top CRO also topped a list complied following a Lehman Brothers survey published in October last year that ranked the top CROs in terms of overall perceived quality of their clinical research services (Phase II/III). Icon Clinical Research came in at second place and the number two CRO in terms of revenue, Covance, was in bronze position in the the investment bank's survey, which was based on the responses of a number of R&D managers at a mix of pharmaceutical & biotech companies. The three CROs scored 2.44, 2.52, and 2.63 respectively in a ranking out of five, where a score of one indicated "excellent" and five signalled "unacceptable". Quintiles, as the market leader in Phase II/III, "clearly benefits from its global capabilities", said Lehman Brothers Equity Research analysts Douglas Tsao and Lawrence Marsh.