The world of health and medicine has broken countless barriers over the last few scores. Life sciences companies have continued to invest significantly in their research of globally corroding diseases, drug molecules discovery and development, and closely monitored clinical trials, to create industry-approved blockbuster medicines. These drugs, gaining precision with time, are curing more diseases and giving patients a chance at better lives. The pharma journey, however, gets complicated with more in-depth clinical and genetic research, as companies continue to find themselves facing more significant ‘unknowns’ than ever before.
Data and technology are etching a new DNA of each touchpoint of our lives today. As we live and breathe, the fourth industrial revolution and its fusion of technologies are dissolving the boundaries of physical, digital, and biological spheres1. As humans, we are more connected than ever before, using extremely advanced technologies, creating unbelievable amounts of extremely granular data. This data explosion is feeding into AI-based quantum computing engines for instant and highly-personalized insights, which help us make better decisions. To operationalize our informed decisions, Internet of Things (IoT) and its connected experience step in to deliver instantaneous desired results. As customers, we are embracing these advancements towards elite customer experiences. As professionals, we need to follow suit, by leveraging data and technology to create innovative products, operational efficiencies, stronger customer equity, and higher profit margins.
Most pharma organizations consider ‘data’ as a key focus area to forge emerging business models by harnessing its immense potential. Data is crucial to fulfilling critical decision making across the Pharma value chain. Today, IT functions in most organizations focus on areas such as data governance, data quality, access management, model configuration, etc. along with data maintenance, processing, and storage. A robust data management solution is a critical IT requirement across pharma organizations. With the advent of cloud infrastructure and new-age technologies, most of the pharma organizations are now preferring advanced next-generation data management solutions for cleaned, integrated and streamlined data on-demand, along with intelligent insights, leading to better decision-making driving long-term profitability.
Today’s increasingly digital society is causing an evolution in pharma marketing strategies. Numerous digital channels have sprung up due to technological advancements, and they are changing doctors’ and patients’ habits. Digital platforms such as emails, digital ads, and paid search are available for pharma companies to target doctors based on their preferences.1 These channels are not deployed to substitute traditional channels, but as part of a synergistic multi-channel marketing strategy, to complement them.2
The Life Sciences analytics industry is progressing each day with AI/ML driven technologies and the exploding healthcare data, which is expected to cross 2,314 exabytes by 20201. New databases are emerging from sources like patient claims & electronic medical records (EMRs), social media, and digital channels. Stakeholders’ preferences are evolving as well, with pharma sales reps finding healthcare physicians (HCPs) more challenging to reach.
Incentive Compensation (IC) today continues to be a critical function in sales operations, and is one of the key levers for driving field force effectiveness. An effective organization should be able to leverage incentive compensation as a strategic tool to drive performance and, as a result, increased revenues. With proliferation of data sources, technologies, selling models and cost pressures, priorities are changing rapidly. IC team leaders today need to be aware of best practices that drive high impact and keep sales organization aligned with corporate sales goals.
Prescribing decisions in the institutional setting differ considerably from the retail setting. As noted in the figure below, HCPs are influenced by several parties, both internal and external. While the health of the patient and safety of medications continue to be of paramount importance, over the past several years, financial considerations have increased attention on quality of care. No longer is a hospital’s survival dependent on the “hotel model” (where higher occupancy equals greater profitability), rather insurance companies, in an effort to control costs, are incentivizing institutions (IDNs) to keep patients healthy, reduce the length and frequency of hospitals visits, etc. Further, as new information systems and technologies are implemented (many driven by requirements outlined in the Affordable Care Act) the ability of key payers to manage costs and processes will improve. This will continue to drive the behaviors of healthcare professionals and their employers.