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CRM tools for Pharmaceuticals – A Perpetual Evolution Story

Implementation of CRM tools as a strategy has evolved beyond just capturing daily call activities. With ever evolving challenges, especially faced by Pharmaceutical, Medical Devices and Life Sciences companies, CRM implementation in these sectors have taken unprecedented importance. These firms face many challenges both internally and externally – increasing price sensitivity among customers, rising competition, increasing regulatory scrutiny, coping up with ever increasing channels to reach out to potential customers, and more. Such developments, no wonder gives rise to high expectations from CRM software/tools to mitigate risks and effectively grab on to opportunities by being ahead of the competition.

CRM assists businesses reach their full potential while allowing them to achieve superior customer service. With technology integration, CRM tools in the pharma and life sciences space have offered companies to efficiently track customer behaviour, adoption levels, conversations via multiple channels and more. In short, CRM has enhanced the way business is conducted, moving from shear interactions between companies and their customer to taking customer focused value delivery with clear insights into customer requirements. Without any doubt, Customer Relationship Management ( CRM ) solution in the pharma sector have assisted firms to navigate through the harsh challenges with ease, with the aid of tailor made strategies – streamlining processes of congregating and analyzing information from diverse data systems to enhance access to readily available insights into customers behaviour and others.

It is a well known fact that companies are facing immense resistance to their growth and profits, especially in the pharma and life sciences spaces. These companies are always on a constant look out for strategies within CRM to tackle the obstacles effectively. Contemporary and ever evolving customer relationship planning has given rise to some very innovative value driven CRM add-ons, such as – Social CRM, Compliance and Regulation Monitoring and Management, Advance Reporting, Sales team training on the move and more. Some of these are discussed below:

Social CRM

With more and more customers opting for social media as a channel to make conversation, it becomes very important for firms to tap into social channels as a way to reach out to their customers. Social CRM gives companies supreme competitive advantage providing them control over perception creation about the brand and customer service. Social channel integration as complimentary channel to CRM software is being widely implemented in pharma CRM space. Social CRM especially in pharma space have many advantages over other customer reach out platforms

  • Mitigation of adverse effects from negative customer feedback by being more proactive in responses.

  • Easy monitoring of social trends and customer behaviour.

  • Effective reach out to opinion leaders.

  • Constant feedback from customers, hence easy to progressively shift to value delivery processes.

  • Constant updates on compliance and regulation as news feeds helps companies to work on customer messaging in real time.

Compliance and Regulation Monitoring and Management

It is important for pharma and life sciences firms to be in good stead to effectively manage and monitor compliance and regulation information. This is because of the fact that customer conversation materials cannot carry content that can greatly put pharma companies into risk of non-compliance. With Global and Local compliance regulations coming into the picture, Pharma companies go through series of rules to ensure non compliance. Compliance is slowly and steadily playing an important role in sales and marketing processes and all advanced CRMs are expected to be complaint to these norms. For examples, a CRM or a SFE solution can help the Pharma and medical devices companies monitor spend on the CME, participant plan, mandatory documents to be uploaded and if required approvals have been obtained.

Advance Reporting

With multiple channels for conversation with customers and other stakeholders, pharma companies constantly generate data. To provide insights into this huge chunk of data, Pharma CRMs have evolved into data analytics and reporting, offering

  • Access to real time data across teams, geographies, products, messaging, sales cycles in an organization.

  • Unified and collated reporting from data gathered across channels.

  • Easier decision making with the aid of accurate insights.

  • Access to key performance indicators of the organization as a whole, teams and individuals, while aiding in efficient performance measurement.

Sales team training on the move

With the increased role of a medical rep in the evolution of the sales processes, it is important that the sales team constantly train and update themselves on the go. Pharma CRM solutions nowadays offer centralized and easy accessible knowledge base and training programs to assist companies to deliver the right product and information to the right person at the right time. Additionally, provisions are also provided by CRMs to store collaterals securely in one repository with role based access.

Conclusion

Challenges are bound to evolve, with it strategies should also evolve to tackle them and mitigate it. With the continuously evolving and dynamic environment it is important that technology partners also keep up with the pace of the industry and offer complete solutions to address challenges that the Pharma and medical device industry may be facing. This will help in streamlining all the sales and marketing processes at any given point of time and provide useful inputs to the top management for decision making.

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