Rapid pharma changes are constantly coming down the pike. Knowing what these changes are is critical to ensure that your company can turn them into an advantage. Understanding the changes and enforcing the right employee training to help everyone stay up-to-date is the only way to make sure that your company and everyone in it maintains a competitive edge. Here are the changes grouped into four broad categories:

#1 Pharma is Facing Greater Regulatory Scrutiny

This presents both benefits and challenges in the pharmaceutical industry. In terms of challenges, when the industry is suffering anywhere in the world, such as the Eurozone crisis between 2010 and 2011, it affects the pharmaceutical industry in all countries. During the Eurozone crisis, pharma company supply chains lost over $7 billion Euro.

This is one of the most impactful pharma challenges because it means that a company may only have a very short window to retrieve production costs and turn a profit from the drugs they create. This is because generic manufacturers are starting to challenge patents more frequently. They have patients and healthcare workers on their side because the increased availability of generic drugs means lower drug costs and easier access to drugs for consumers.

You need regulations for safety and honesty, but too many regulations can squeeze an industry due to heavily increased costs. An increasing barrage of rules are being created and enforced for the pharmaceutical industry for factors like:

• The drug approval process
• Annual fees
• Marketing and advertising

Environmental and animal welfare groups are also putting pressure on the pharma industry resulting in pharma changes. Companies will have to work harder to satisfy regulations, as well as further regulatory changes that are expected to take place.

All of these changes are making it a necessity for employee training to be considerably faster and more efficient. This is important to ensure that all employees are kept up-to-date on all changes so that they can keep up with the rapidly evolving market.

#2 – Science and Discovery is More Costly and Specialized

Every new treatment discovery becomes more and more specialized due to today’s progressive understanding of disease. In terms of both marketing and production, it requires considerably more effort to sell these drugs because of this increased specialization forcing pharma changes throughout the industry. This is an area where frequent and enhanced employee training is critical because the smallest blip can be immensely costly due to resulting in an inability to sell the product.

When it comes to medicine, most the scientific breakthroughs have occurred. While there are still incurable diseases and a drug treatment for them could reinvigorate the market, many of the drugs being produced today are simply refinements to what is already available to consumers. Maximizing the revenues for refinement drugs is critical to stay competitive.

With the era of a more specialized market, pharma employees require more in-depth training to remain competitive. For example, comprehensive training concerning more complex and targeted treatments and the disease states that are created to treat is necessary.

#3 – Patients are Better Informed and Active

Like the global economy, smarter patients who are involved in their healthcare a good and a bad thing in terms of pharma changes. Patients are more informed than they have ever been when it comes to available drugs and the risks and benefits of these drugs. This knowledge means that patients are demanding specific treatment options from doctors instead of doctors being the lead of their patient’s treatment plans. Patients are also more likely to take on a pharmaceutical company if they have a negative reaction to a drug, resulting in more frequent and expensive lawsuits.

#4 – Providers are Harder to Reach and Influence

Traditionally, pharmaceutical companies provide information about new drugs to doctors and doctors get these drugs to the consumer via prescriptions. However, this method of selling is becoming increasingly outdated as physicians are busier, there is greater pushback on direct selling, and providers are being more guideline-driven, so pharma companies are changing their tactics to get their drugs to consumers. New marketing and advertising strategies are important and companies have to ensure that their message is properly tailored to today’s medicine consumer who is smarter and more informed. It is a delicate balance that takes time and increased employee education to achieve. This will require pharma representatives to get more creative to ensure effective and timely communication with doctors. Pharma sales training veteran Wendy Chase, of the Uncharted Group says,

The era of working off a script and a linear selling model has been gone for a long time. Biotech and pharma sales professionals must have customized dialogue with each customer and account as their needs are constantly changing and evolving.

With the multitude of pharma changes occurring, employee training is paramount to maintaining a competitive edge in the industry. Better and more frequent employee training ensures that they are on top of the changes and know how to address them and use them to create an advantage. In an ever-evolving industry, companies that invest in their employees not only stay atop those changes best, but they tend to keep their best employees. To see how the NovoEd Learning Platform can help you keep your employees stay on the cutting edge, contact us below.