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What trends can we expect to see in the Medical Sales industry by 2020?

Posted on: 17 Jul

The modern medical sales industry is diverse and complex, with rapid developments in technology and techniques making it an increasingly exciting sector in which to work. Patient centricity is continuing to become an important focus for medical sales, and for Medical Sales Representatives to succeed, they need to put the patient at the heart of everything they do. On top of this, technological advancements mean those in the field need to stay on top of their digital skills in order to be at the forefront of a rapidly developing markets. We explore these key trends in the medical sales industry below.

The patient is key

Patient centricity is no new concept, however its impact on the medical world has been particularly accelerated in recent years. In 2014, 86% of pharma executives identified patient centricity as being the key to their profitability, and with access to healthcare professionals becoming harder to attain for sales representatives, the pressure is on to ensure all interactions are meaningful and have the patient in mind. Medical and pharmaceutical companies must factor in their patients at every step of their programmes and processes which requires not only more in-depth knowledge about their products, but also the behaviours and motivators of their patients. So when medical sales representatives do secure those vital conversations with healthcare professionals, they need to be prepared to demonstrate their clear insight into the patient journey.

Technology talks

The impact of technology on the health industry and medical sales cannot be overstated. Innovation and technological advancement has allowed information to flow more rapidly through various channels, giving Medical Sales Reps the opportunity to learn more than ever about products, processes and customers.

Expect to see more of interactive 3D technologies that demonstrate products in an interactive way. Sales Representatives of the future will increasingly be using advanced software to demonstrate products and simulate the customer journey. This allows the customer to become more actively involved in the demonstration, effectively putting themselves in the shoes of the end user. Programmes may show how healthcare professionals would use a product in a variety of different settings, how products interact with each other and how they can be applied for different patients. Virtual reality technology will also make waves, with programmes being developed to assist patients with pain relief and distraction. Sales Representatives are wise to keep abreast of these advancements in order to maintain a competitive edge.

Regulation continues to restrict

Policy makers and enforcers will continue to mandate much of the medical sales industry, with governments and other rule makers influencing what is available and can be prescribed to the general market. According to a PwC Pharma 2020 report, as regulators become more risk-averse, there will be more caution around approving the use of the market’s more innovative medicines, which could prove challenging for Medical Sales Representatives. Expect to see those within the medical sales industry increase their collaboration approaches with healthcare payers and providers in order to improve patient compliance.


At IQVIA, we’re always on top of the latest industry developments. If you’re looking for your next Medical Sales job, please take a look at our vacancies here.