The pandemic has presented challenges for the frontline workers in every industry due to the reduced human contact. The same is true for medical device sales workers who sell such instruments to doctors. Although the lockdowns have been lifted in several countries and such reps are free to go to any physician’s office to sell, but still, the Covid-19 disease has created several challenges for them.
There is a need for them to adapt to these problems very seriously and uplift themselves in this scenario.
Can medical device sales reps be replaced with digital technology?
The medical device sales reps cannot be replaced with digital technology because there is so much value in human interaction. It’s similar to replacing doctors with artificial intelligence which recognizes the symptoms and knows to detect a disease. But every symptom can’t be fed into artificial intelligence programs because new diseases are on the rise.
At this time, it is the responsibility of the pharma companies to strengthen the skills of their medical device sales reps through e-learning for health.
There might be communication problems with a medical representative, and his training needs to be individual to him. Therefore, each medical device sales rep should have a Playbook app that contains a series of advice about how he should interact with prospects.
A medical manager can be asked to download the Playbook app so that he can upload a video for the medical reps on his app. He can get information about how many times; the medical device sales rep has watched this video.
It can act as the perfect JIT tool for the medical representative, who can use it, for help during the most troublesome situations.
Job difficulties of a medical device sales rep
Product knowledge: The job of medical device sales reps is complicated as they have to solve any function-related problems arising post-sales. So, they must have detailed technical knowledge which is an inherent part of their sales process also. It’s the job of managers to include complicated scientific information in their coaching sessions. If the device is innovative and effective but needs understanding, then the managers should include detailed oriented sales executives for its sales.
Lack of information: There were so many changes in the medical device sales industry during the pandemic. Call center Employees had to shift to the work from home mode. Customers who accessed the medical device eCommerce websites were not able to get a call in time due to information lag caused by the remote work scenario. So, pharma companies had to make sure that their call center employees had more accessibility tools with them to inform the frontline workers about any order. That’s why e-learning for health became a panacea during this scene. It taught the medical device sales rep to easily fulfill customer needs by suggesting the correct product to them after finding it on the eCommerce site.
The people managing the site can provide the relevant data to the medical device sales reps about when they can get their orders if the product is in short supply. Such reps can also get information about the orders placed through a robust site which also helps a customer in buying easily because chatbots and artificial intelligence guide them.
Safe deliveries: In fact, e-learning for health included teaching medical device sales reps about how to deliver their orders wearing the PPE’s.
Moreover, there was a heightened demand for PPE kits among doctors also and medical device sales reps had to supply them.
But, challenges were created for medical device sales reps because their in-person visits to doctors and hospitals were canceled. They could not anticipate the future where demand for medical equipment had a setback. But there was a surge in demand for medical devices related to the Covid-19 pandemic, but there were FDA imposed restrictions on how much quantity could be supplied.