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How technology is changing the modern workforce

Posted on: 07 May

The Covid-19 pandemic has led to more people working from home than ever before. In the UK economy where just 1.9 million people worked mainly from home in 2019, the unprecedented shift towards remote working has led to people all over the country rethinking the way they approach work. Sales meetings have shifted to video calls, interviews take place digitally and teamwork is nurtured through online chat windows.

With people increasingly becoming accustomed to working from home, many businesses will be taking stock and considering what learnings they can take from this pandemic period forward into the future workforce. Here’s how technology is changing the modern workforce:

A shift of where and when we work

Covid-19 has led to experimentation with remote working on a national – and global – scale. The flexibility that three-quarters of the UK workforce was looking for in 2019 has suddenly arrived, whether workers and businesses were ready for it or not. Many organisations have found themselves able to run much more smoothly than anticipated, with home working proven to boost employee productivity, work-life balance and mental health outcomes. So, what will happen once the restrictions are relaxed, and we can return to offices and workplaces?

For some organisations, it will be back to business as usual; office leases are fixed, many jobs require a physical presence and some people simply prefer to work in a dedicated social space outside their home. However, we can expect to see many workers demand increased flexibility in the wake of the pandemic, now with the evidence to prove that it can be done efficiently and productively. This may lead to a hybrid of office/lab/workplace-based work and home or remote options. Different teams or individuals may have the opportunity to work remotely on different days, with core hours set and the freedom to structure the rest of the workday around meetings and individual workloads.

For key workers and those without the option to perform their duties remotely, we can still expect to see changes in the way work takes place as a direct result of Covid-19 and the advances in technology. This may include staggered workplace hours, a shift away from physical meetings to digital options and more contactless operations.

Digital communications take hold

Even for those who return to the physical work environment, we can expect to see a shift in communication behaviours as technology continues to remove the need for physical meetings. Lockdown has seen a significant surge in virtual phone and video meetings on platforms such as Zoom, Hangouts, Teams, GoTo Meeting and Skype, as well as text-based chats on various social messaging platforms. Communication is now quicker and easier than ever, with no need for people to be in the same office – or even the same country – to conduct effective meetings, brainstorm sessions or project work.

The impact of tech on medical sales careers

Technology has fundamentally changed the sales process in recent years, and the Covid-19 crisis has further accelerated this. With clinical events and conferences cancelled or postponed, face-to-face contact has halted for medical sales representatives and we can expect to see elements of this continue long after lockdown restrictions ease. With virtual health tools already allowing companies to have increased engagement with patients and healthcare professionals, technology can be harnessed to enable medical sales reps to have more interaction with clients than ever, without the time and expense of travelling to sites and coordinating diaries for in-person meetings.

Cloud-based technologies and blockchain will become more widespread among the medical sales community, while like other industries, pharmaceutical and life science companies are adopting internet-based virtual meetings to accommodate the busy schedules of health care professionals. E-detailing will likely increase in the wake of lockdown, and those medical sales reps who are confident offering this option to health care providers may be more successful in securing business in the future.

Take the next step in your medical sales carer with IQVIA

At IQVIA, we’re not only fighting back against Covid-19 by helping to accelerate treatments and support health systems globally, but we’re also working to ensure our candidates have access to the best medical sales representative roles on the market. Read more of our insights to find out more.