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What are the top skills for medical affairs professionals?

Medical Affairs is an interesting career choice that offers the right professional candidates plenty of opportunities to grow and put their best skills to practice. The role is diverse but can entail everything from strategic brand planning to earlier stages of drug and device research and development. Those who enter medical affairs or medical science liaison jobs can look forward to:

  • Being part of the driving force that delivers better solutions to patients.
  • Participating in new AI technologies that are set to enhance the medical field experience.
  • Actively changing the future of healthcare by taking on a diverse set of roles that are impactful and interesting.

According to BioSpace, the global medical affairs market will reach a value of US$ 3.51 billion by 2030. This means that there’s no shortage of available job positions in the sector and candidates who choose to map out careers in medical affairs can prosper in the right medical positions. However, certain skills are needed to excel in the field and secure the best roles.

The top skills for medical affairs jobs include:

1. Virtual and in-person engagement

The COVID-19 pandemic created many new expectations for medical affairs professionals, including implementing hybrid communication models that target virtual and in-person engagements. Today’s medical liaisons are expected to master both touchpoints so that trusting relationships can be cultivated.

This means that communication skills need to be more dynamic and medical candidates must be capable of using a diverse range of devices to convey messages. As we’ll discuss below, the acceptance of technology in the workplace is the future of medical affairs and, when used correctly, it can help maintain a human-centric approach in a digitally inclined world.

2. Strategic thinking

Success in medical affairs requires strategic thinking that helps to see projects through and build viable partnerships that drive innovation. From researching new drugs and devices to launching brands and gathering patient feedback, each step of this type of medical process needs to be taken thoughtfully and meticulously.

3. Digital acumen

The rapid creation of health data and innovation in technology prompts a crucial need for upskilling of digital capabilities in the medical industry. For example, accessing, collecting, and aggregating health data alone requires the use of software and artificial intelligence to transform information into real-world evidence. This “evidence” allows medical liaisons to bridge gaps between medical professionals and optimal patient care.

Medical affairs professionals must, therefore, be able to adopt a learning mindset that keeps them current with new technology and a digital way of life.

4. Patient-centricity

Most importantly, medical affairs professionals must be able to adopt a patient-centric approach to their tasks. Success in the future of healthcare depends on improved patient outcomes, and given its significance, medical affairs must keep this front and centre to make a notable impact on the industry.

Patient-centric approaches include using patience to uncover unmet needs, taking time to meticulously mine data for fresh insights on patient care, and supporting the patient experience with empathy.

Enhance your medical affairs career with IQVIA

The IQVIA team is ready and waiting to help you apply your best skills by connecting you to the best medical affairs and medical sales manager jobs. With access to the tools and data-led solutions to help you succeed in this diverse and impactful sector, we can easily connect you to a role that allows you to kickstart your career or expand into it.

Simply browse our current medical affairs jobs to see if a position appeals to you, or sign up to receive tailored job alerts.

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