With the B2B sales landscape evolving rapidly, training and education for sales teams in the pharmaceutical industry is essential in preparing sales reps for success.
Adapt to the Changing Environment
Computer-based simulations help teams respond to the evolving sales environment by being engaging, realistic, and helping sales representatives develop critical skills for a world driven by data. Common role-playing exercises and on the job learning do not work as well today with the rise in remote working and virtual sales calls. Sales reps should be trained in these on-line avenues in order to be well equipped to build relationships and finalize sales.
These computer-based simulations are considered “experiential learning” as they “place learners in a realistic, competitive landscape where they must make commercial decisions over a number of business cycles”, says pharmexec.com. Simulations are immersive and effective and can be offered either onsite or remotely.
The benefits of computer-based simulations include:
- Engagement through collaboration and competition by working in teams. This creates excitement and encourages collaboration while also allowing learners to practice decision making with uncertain outcomes. These characteristics help keep learners motivated throughout the training program.
- Realism without risk is a benefit that allows learners to take risks and make mistakes in a realistic environment without real world consequences. This type of simulation also provides feedback to successes and failures to help the learner improve understanding and overall confidence.
- With the increased use of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Sales Performance Management (SPM) systems, it is important for pharmacy reps to understand how to facilitate, store, and analyze sales data to remain competitive in the industry. Computer- based simulations help trainees understand the data captured in these systems along with how to engage and extract value from it.
Increase Sales Effectiveness
Effective sales training and education combines strategic planning that aligns the learning journey to the business vision. Pharmaceutical sales training typically includes a vision, audience analysis, instructional goals, learning objectives, organization, design, mapping, and localization.
Amwa.org states, “the goal of product training is to create a shared understanding of the product and the marketplace so that the team can confidently and expertly communicate to external stakeholders as soon as the product or indication gains regulatory approval”. Sales training and education gives sales reps the knowledge to leverage talent and bring better pharmacy products to healthcare providers and patients.
Sales reps, sales managers, key account managers, reimbursement specialists, marketers and marketing leadership, trainers, and medical science liaisons all require product training to understand the sales strategy, product, market access, and competitive landscape. Medical sales training is becoming more concise and visual, utilizing current technology to be even more effective at creating a confident and successful team.
Gain Skills and Credibility
Obtaining a pharmaceutical sales certification shows a sales rep has mastered the skills and knowledge necessary in selling prescribed drugs and other medications. Having a certification helps reps to find better jobs, create a strong professional profile, and enhance overall sales skills. It also gives reps the ability to gain knowledge in various areas such as clinical pharmacology, medical terminology, pharmaceutical terminology, drug sampling and handling rules and regulations, effective drug sales skills, and more.
Types of pharmaceutical sales certifications include professional certified marketer, sales management specialist, certified sales representative, certified medical assistant, emergency medical technician, and certified medical interpreter.
Adhere to Industry Regulations
As the pharmaceutical industry moves everyday towards more ethical and socially just practices, new regulations are introduced to support the changes. Not adhering to regulations can cost companies millions of dollars, damage stakeholder returns, and damage the relationship between sales reps and providers. Training is necessary to ensure sales reps are always aware of regulations for drug approval processes, pricing, marketing, and sales.
Another aspect of adhering to industry standards is handling the various forms of documentation that comes with being a medical sales representative. Effective sales training will include training on how to handle and properly store sales documentation.
A recent challenge in the pharmaceutical industry that education and training can combat is the increasing cost of research and development for drugs and biotech products. Training and education help sales reps to have extensive knowledge of the product, challenges it can solve for medical professionals, the surrounding competition, and the ability to effectively answer questions and concerns surrounding the product. These skills give sales reps the ability to be successful in marketing and selling products, therefore increasing market share for the product.
Improve People Skills
To successfully sell a product, sales reps need to know how to effectively talk to clients in a way that speaks to the unique needs of the industry and company. Education and sales training teaches sales reps active listening and problem-solving skills in order to perform successfully in sales presentations. Even if a sales rep is extremely knowledgeable on a product, a lack of soft skills immediately puts up a barrier between the rep and the client.
Custom Educational & Sales Training
Prime Meridian Group offers comprehensive training that includes custom selling strategies to increase overall sales effectiveness and educate sales teams. Our programs include onsite new hire training programs or custom based national sales meeting breakout sessions and tutorials. We specialize in educating your sales team along the continuum of the sales representative life cycle.
Improve sales and market share by contacting Prime Meridian today!
About Prime Meridian
Prime Meridian Group (Prime Meridian), a boutique consulting firm, offers clients unique solutions to healthcare and pharmaceutical companies to include Advisory Board Solutions, Educational Training, Sales Meeting Training, as well as e-Learning Solutions.