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    Medical Sales Rep Won't Buy Sales Related Apps

    I'm representing myself in writing about the subject of medical sales reps would not buy sales related apps, be it from Apple Store or Google Play.

    buy appsAnd the reason is: what they have is already a LOT!

    Yup, medical sales reps from every size of pharma companies, already been "supplied" with thousands of apps on their mobile devices.

    Of course, I just made up the numbers...

    ...but they really can come to that (at least I feel that way).

    A typical medical rep will be equipped with a laptop, as a compulsory mobile device (yes, a computer IS a mobile device).

    The laptop is then installed with the pharma companies in-house program. Most of the time, it's a Customer Resources Management (CRM) program, which is mainly used to record customers details, purchasing pattern, etc.

    (I sometimes wonder why companies will charge reps who 'genuinely' lost their laptop the same amount they bought the computer with - is it the hardware the rep is paying for, or the software?)

    Then, companies will install presentation software for reps to run a small group or individual presentation. This allows movie-like (video) presentation, and reps don't have to be so nervous when presenting.

    And that just the laptops...
    mobile to laptop

    For the more "micro-manage" pharma companies, and sales managers, of course, they will also install tracker program for reps to record their itinerary, sales by products, forecast, sales by territory, and many more.

    It's going to be like a circus in there, and sloppy medical sales reps can get tangled up pretty fast. No offense, but the ones that often get caught up real fast are the "seniors"...

    ...with their "been there, done that" attitude ;-)

    Just like they say, "It's hard to teach old dogs new tricks!"

    Since the laptop is quite "big" to be carried around (or to be seen being carried around), with the advance of technology, smaller devices were invented.

    And pharmaceutical companies are quite early to adapt to advancement.

    I remember when they launched Palm Pilot way, way back then. I was among the first to own such a device. And the following year, all reps were supplied with one.

    So what they do back then, early morning, they put the Palm into its dock and synchronize. All visits, discussion, and sales records will be updated in just a few hours!...

    ...Huh! I said a few hours because everybody synchronizes at the same time. It's the order. When that happens, the server had to take the extra burden, so, it slows down.

    Not only that, inside the Palm Pilot, there were also millions of programs (application is perhaps, still in infancy stage) for reps to use.

    And today, we have smartphones, iPads, and tablets...

    The capacity for these devices to store and run the program is "scary." Not only that, I was told by fellow reps from individual pharma companies that trackers were installed into their devices!

    Companies can tell where they are at the point the devices are switched on.

    How's that for "micromanage" ey?

    And some trackers can tell which page of a brochure is frequently opened. They said it's for marketing purpose: to be able to tell which message is critical to customers.

    Really?...

    The thing about all these devices, programs, trackers and what have you, is that you actually don't need to use ALL of them, but you must know what they are and what they're used for.

    And I find a bit of a "challenge" with that. If they knew reps would not be using all of the apps, or perhaps will use them some times in the future,  why clutter the space now?...

    ...and making them go through training, simulation (well, maybe that's OK), and everything in between, only to revert back to the 'old' Microsoft Excel printout?

    Give the reps a break, will ya?

    rep with ipad
    After all that has been said and done, this is just my opinion. Being 'hi-tech' and fancy are OK as long as the results are there.

    What count is the result...

    Just earlier today, I received an email from the company with updates for customers' code. I opened it on my iPad and store the Excel file in it.

    After meeting a customer later that afternoon, I opened the iPad to see what's the updated code for that customer.

    And guess what?

    I was presented with funny characters in the Excel file. Whoa! Was the file corrupt? Maybe, but lucky me because I've backed myself up with the 'old school' way - the file printout!

    Not only that, my printout was only on my customers, out of the thousands which the company sent.

    Smart or luck?

    It's just common sense folks. Medical sales reps, like me, find that we've already being bogged down by too many data mining, which in my humble opinion, is more useful to the specific function of the pharma company, but indeed not sales...

    ...more apps, more monitoring, minimal or less change in sales.

    But that's just me :-)

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