Using technology to aid ever-diminishing sales forces is not only a good idea, but a necessity, given the decreased opportunities to interact directly with health care professionals.
For Ovation Pharmaceuticals, tablet PCs in the hospital setting have provided reps with an opportunity to offer health care professionals concise information relevant to an individual practice, according to Paul Stickler, Ovation's senior director of sales. “With tablet PCs, [sales reps] can go straight to the need of the physician or customer,” explained Stickler.
For example, tablet PCs' ability to deliver easy navigation allows a user to access materials pertinent to a particular area of interest, rather than a rep digging through an armful of documents. Stickler says hospitals with access to an LCD screen have been really successful, because reps can run a whole group through a presentation.
“Animated graphical details can explain complicated information more easily, allowing healthcare providers to visualize the material more clearly, compared with a more static sales detail,” said Stickler. Ovation uses a Linova X61, which is basically a laptop with a screen that can twist around to function like a kiosk. It also contains a pen touch screen, and high quality video capabilities. Stickler said video vignettes featuring a thought leader have been successful with healthcare professionals.