4 Ways To Boost Remote HCP Engagement During Pandemic

Sales rep talking to physician remotely
April 8, 2020 | Article

Is remote physician engagement a priority for you? Here are 4 strategies to engage your HCP’s during this difficult time and emerge as an industry leader.

As the Coronavirus continues to sweep across the globe, mitigations have caused paralysis in daily business everywhere. The life sciences industry has been increasingly crippled as bans on in-person meetings have stalled critical pharma-physician interactions.

This interruption of business not only impacts revenue immediately – but the long-term implications are even more disturbing. What will the ‘new normal’ be for this historical basis of Pharma Commercial business?

If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to change things – for this pandemic situation and the future of your business. Here are a few things to consider to survive this crisis and emerge as a leader in the industry:

1.) Remote Technology

Some companies are using remote technology to ensure continuity of commercial business and facilitate interactions between pharma and HCPs during this time. One recent trend is towards branded desktop devices such as Swittons by P360, which is the only 4-button device to enable clickable requests to be facilitated immediately. 

Swittons can be used for common needs such as communicating with Sales Reps, MSLs, and requesting Medical Information (or custom programming for other needs). Different from the single-button ‘basic’ e-relay devices out there, Swittons is an advanced device and software solution providing agile, seamless augmentation of your Sales strategies. 

Feedback about Swittons has shown a strong preference for the device over portals and websites for communication between Pharma and Physicians due to the over-use of these other modalities. The device can either work WITH your existing portal or system, or INSTEAD of it. Powerful integrations with any existing system (e.g. Veeva, www.veeva.com) allow for seamless workflows and strong scale-up and growth capabilities to weather future unplanned hurdles as well. 

And backed by the most respected customer service in the industry, your Swittons backend programming can pivot on a dime. Whatever technologies you select (or not), your business processes should be protected and capable of navigating immense hurdles in the future – as the present crisis has shown everyone.

Swittons device

2.) Reassess & Realign Your Situation

Your sales team has been grounded. Before making any decisions, it’s critical to assess your team as well as your HCPs. Now might be the time to assess team size, competencies, and determine if downsizing is right. It’s a painful topic, but the present crisis demands diligence and financial efficiency. It’s also time to realign against your HCPs and Territories.

Are your strategies with HCPs as sound as you think? If you don’t have strong analytics on HCP performance and behavioral patterns, consider P360’s BirdzAI advanced Machine Learning and AI Modules for predictive analysis of physician writing patterns to give you intelligent recommendations on how to properly allocate resources.

We can help you assess your current Sales operations and show where efficiency and cost savings can be gained. Either way now is the time to reassess and realign.

MSL &  AI Image

3.) Space & Support

Physicians need space right now. They are being pulled in various directions and most are at ‘ground-zero’ locations. Now is not the time to be over-communicating and waving flags about your new diabetes drug. Even though space is needed, consider ways to support them.

Your Sales Reps hopefully have great relationships with them. Lean on that support structure to offer them help – even wishing them to be safe during this time. Some Pharma companies are allowing their MD / Nursing staff to volunteer in the healthcare field to fight this crisis while continuing to pay their base salary.

Consider ways of helping your HCPs and the crisis – and have it come from the heart, not as a PR opportunity.

4.) Prepare For Lag In In-Person Visits

Even after the ban on social interactions is lifted, your Sales Reps will have a longer lag until they can comfortably visit HCPs again. When life starts to return to a new normal, Physician offices and hospitals will be overbooked with patients concerning non-COVID needs. This means HCPs won’t be prioritizing visits by Pharma Sales Reps.

Be courteous to this lag and develop a strategy. Estimates indicate this lag will take 6-8 months after new normalcy begins. Be ready for this timeframe and utilize remote technologies to ensure business continuity.

The pain points of the current situation are difficult but navigable. Proactivity and vision will allow companies to emerge with strengths and technologies that will differentiate them from others. Don’t just react, create a long-term strategy to transform into the company that raises the bar for the new way of doing business. Be Powered.

Click below to chat with us if you’d like to learn more about how we can help boost your remote HCP engagement during these difficult times.