Medical sales reps shouldn’t have to spend inordinate amounts of time compiling information for effective pre-call planning. You didn’t hire them to be data analysts. And, if you give them the right sales enablement tools they need to efficiently do that part of the job, they will be able to better spend their work hours building relationships and becoming valuable partners with your key customers.
Simply put, if med reps have a system to adequately prepare for and prioritize sales calls, they are going to be better set up for success.
The answer to the challenges here lies in giving med reps easy access to more usable information in easy-to-digest formats so that they can effectively create pre-call plans that will improve their results and enhance their engagements.
A perceived lack of value for med reps
Though many agree pre-call planning is one of the most important aspects of a medical device or pharmaceutical sales rep’s day, truly useful pre-call planning isn’t easy.
Convoluted and complex pre-call planning templates have pushed many to disregard the process entirely. Others find the template their organization has provided them with doesn’t deliver the right value. It’s either difficult to fill out, asks the wrong questions or doesn’t add anything to the eventual conversation. And, the amount of information that must be pulled from multiple data sets and systems isn’t an easy task even for the most tech-savvy sales reps.
Try overlaying that information in a way that will result in identifying the best call plans and sales approaches based on a number of unique factors like location, number of lives, competitive positioning, coverage advantage, patient demographics, HCP preferences, and marketing’s mandates. It all quickly becomes a pretty intense ask of anyone!
In the end, it boils down to lots of time spent for the reward of very little useful information.
Pre-call planning should offer med reps:
- A call list based on opportunity.
- Individual customer profiles that give a quick overview of the customer, their patients and preferences.
- A clear idea of key messages and key materials that should be shared with each customer.
- Quick access to any training materials or tips to help with communicating that message.
Time for a technology upgrade
Pre-call planning tools for pharmaceutical and medical device sales reps need an overhaul that leverages the intelligent sharing of knowledge and automated templates. Your pre-call planning solution should:
- Be catered to your organization’s specific needs. It is not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. You will need to incorporate business rules and possibly rating scales so intelligent workflows are a must.
- Be able to incorporate whatever information your med reps need to give them a complete picture of their territory and of their customers, such as relevant managed care details, competitive insights, what marketing initiatives are currently running and customer preferences..
- Make it easy on your sales reps. A solution that will put all this information into an easy to understand, automatically populated template based on your business rules will give your med reps an information advantage. Give them a bunch of charts and graphs that they can’t figure out and forget it. It is not going to work. Sometimes a one page Word Doc is all that is needed.
- Provide intelligent workflows that are built-in so you can build rating scales based on your own business rules. Especially if identifying call plans based on where the most fertile opportunities are is important to you.
- Support medreps using mobile devices. If you want sales reps to have easy access to sales materials (personalized or static) and/or training resources to enrich their conversations, you may want to consider a sales enablement tool like eGenerate by elandas to give your reps a virtual briefcase with their templated pre-call plans and all the associated materials they need in the palm of their hands.
For more information on the pre-call planning options that your med reps will embrace, join us for a 30-minute information session.