Diplomat Specialty's 'top job creator' nod a boon for specialty pharm

Inc. magazine named Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy as one of the country's top 100 job creators as part of the business magazine's inaugural Hire Power Awards. Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy cracked the list at No. 94 with the addition of 233 new positions over the past three years and came in at No. 5 in the company's home state of Michigan.

But though the company comes in at No. 94 on Inc.'s list, measured up against the likes of information technology services juggernaut GoDaddy.com or the rapidly growing fast-food chain Colorado Smashburger, Diplomat Specialty is a bellwether all the same — specialty pharmacy is and will be the catalyst for growth in the retail pharmacy industry.

But DSN has been reporting that all along — just last month, Specialty Pharmacy announced the "immediate need to fill [another] 100 full-time jobs" to work in the company's Flint, Mich., headquarters, a former General Motors technology center. Had those jobs been filled prior to Inc.'s compilation of the Hire Power Awards, Diplomat would have ranked No. 70.

Once those positions are filled, that will bring the company's workforce to 625 employees, or a little more than halfway toward the 1,000 employee five-year goal the company set in 2010 when it first moved into the former GM facility. That suggests that by 2015, Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy will have at least 475 new employees over a three-year period. Today, that kind of rapid job growth would place Diplomat Specialty No. 43 on that list.

And it's only fitting that this is all happening in Flint, Mich., once home to an automobile manufacturing powerhouse. But that industry is long past its heyday, as evidenced by Michigan's recent vote to become a right-to-work state. And in its place is a new, strong and healthy growth engine in specialty pharmacy that's only going to get bigger and stronger in the coming years, especially as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is implemented beginning in 2014.

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