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Delivering a better eDetail: Strategy-led user-centred methodology in practice

Stuart Goodman and Anna Tamasi demonstrate how user-centred design helps to build better strategy and assets for pharma and healthcare.
Pharma doesn’t know its customers. Sound familiar? 

At Blue Latitude Health, we've written extensively about the fact that, whilst there is a gradually increasing recognition within healthcare that patient centricity is key, pharmaceutical companies continue to produce services, solutions and importantly digital offerings without fully understanding, or understanding at all, the customer and their needs.

We see time and time again the development of solutions that are being built purely to meet business objectives, or satisfy internal powers-that-be whose budgets and need for fast results dictate their decision-making. Unfortunately this lack of alignment with the many other stakeholders involved in the system (patient, doctor, sales rep) results in solutions that are likely to have a dramatically reduced return on investment and cause the disruptive frustration that is becoming increasingly prevalent in healthcare.

However, it’s not as simple as it sounds to develop something that meets the different needs of so many different people. Whose needs do you prioritise? How will this solution fit in amongst the many other touchpoints they have with your brand? What does success for each stakeholder even look like?

That’s why adopting a user-centred methodology is critical, and more importantly, adopting one that is led by a solid strategy.
If we delve into a very practical example of the deliverable stage of an electronic detail aid for sales reps, it’s possible to see the benefits made possible, for the customer and company alike, if strategy underpins every decision made.

Briefing phase – setting up for success

If you want to turn around at the end of your project with a deliverable that exceeds expectations, you need strategy from the start. The briefing phase is where you will put in the groundwork that will ensure all stakeholders are satisfied with the end product. It involves collecting the many different inputs – customer insight (including market research), business objectives, budget and time available, any other critical considerations – and turning these into a comprehensive and yet concise document for your team. This document will be the ‘Bible’ for your project.  

A few potential inputs and considerations that should be considered in our eDetail example include:
  1. Business objectives: what is the overarching goal for this project? How does this translate into S.M.A.R.T. objectives and who is responsible for tracking the success of these? What does success even look like from a KPI and metric point of view?
  2. Customer insight: how do our target healthcare professionals (HCPs) currently behave, and how do we want them to behave? What are the underlying motivators behind these mind-sets? What are their critical information needs, and how do they like to receive information from a sales rep? How long do reps have with physicians? What sort of functionalities are critical during their calls? How do they like to consume and exchange information, and store knowledge received?
  3. Alignment with overarching brand and/or campaign strategy: how does this eDetail fit within the many other touchpoints the customer has with our brand? Are we telling a consistent and integrated story across all channels? What’s in the pipeline that we need to consider for the future?
Even at a glance it’s possible to see just how critical having a solid strategic plan is – without it, you risk heading down a track that only offers irrelevance, misconceptions and frustration for the customer.


Download the full article from Blue Latitude Health

6th May 2016

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