With the ever-changing trends and dynamic landscape of the global pharma market, it is essential for pharma companies to improve their sales force effectiveness. Since time immemorial, the pharma industry had put its sales representatives or sales force on a pedestal, as they are the point of contact for the various stakeholders as well as the vehicle that drives sales and growth. This thought process led to a sudden surge in the size of the organization’s sales force, thereby increasing the company’s dependence on them. However, top healthcare professionals believe that in order to drive profitability and have a positive impact on the company’s bottom line, pharmaceutical companies need to shift focus from maximizing its sales force to ensuring sales force effectiveness.
Pharma Sales Force in the Limelight: Why?
The pharma industry has always placed high importance in terms of costs on research and development and sales force. The reason for the industry’s sales force to be in the limelight is that it is the second biggest cost incurred by the pharma companies. Innovation is the driving factor for the industry in question, however, it is essential to have a dynamic workforce or team of sales representatives that drive sales.
Earlier pharma companies followed a size strategy that in simple words meant – more the merrier, as a result, they hired more sales representatives. However, in the wake of changing regulatory compliance, buying patterns, narrow margins, and tight production processes, companies are coerced to opt for optimizing their sales force and improve its sales force effectiveness. Top pharmaceutical leaders believe that a team of professional sales consultants will be able to drive sales to hospitals and liaise with insurance companies as opposed to low skilled sales force hired in bulk.
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What is Pharma Sales Force Effectiveness All About?
Sales force effectiveness is all about adding to the organization’s revenues by leveraging customer acquisition strategies, facilitating product/service sales by either up-selling or cross-selling tactics. It enables the sales force to direct its efforts to highly profitable customers instead of less profitable prospects. Salesforce effectiveness entails developing a strategy for the sales team, talent acquisition and management, compensation and benefits, and other support services that help the sales force to work better. An effective and strategically developed go-to-market strategy depends on an effective sales force and vice versa. It is essential for the pharma companies to drive the sales force, devise strategies to boost efficiency, and create a positive impact on the business’ top line.
In order to achieve sales force effectiveness, organizations must focus on three key areas such as strategy, execution, and capabilities. In order to devise a successful go-to-market strategy, sales representatives must be aware of the factors that drive sales and define objectives that promote channel growth. Execution is the crucial element on which the success of the organization depends as it involves balancing the strategy impact and the cost to serve, i.e. identifying tasks that require more focus. Possessing the appropriate capabilities boosts the chances of yielding desired results and capturing long term success. Sales force effectiveness is essential so as to create an acceptable performance benchmark, develop the sales force, and devise compensation strategies that improve efficiency and effectiveness.
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The pharma industry has reacted to this pressing issue of sales force effectiveness by taking necessary steps in this direction. It has realized that sales force effectiveness lies in equipping them with the right information on the right customer with the necessary details, tailoring their marketing strategies for each stakeholder, and incentivizing the sales force for meeting their target conversions. This approach helps the organization to drive sales force efficiency and boost the return on investment (ROI) and profitability.
At Quantzig, we enable organizations to forecast workforce requirements and thereby improve operational performance. Additionally, we offer sales and marketing analytics services and solutions for the healthcare industry that assists them to make informed decisions and yield desired results.