Is your Digital Agenda Sufficient to Drive Customer Obsession? Reflections on Indegene Digital Summit Day One

By Michael Cook, Aneta Geistová and Samuel Anker

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Ahead of the first day of the 2020 Indegene Digital Summit, one question was on the minds of many participants: Is the COVID-19 pandemic the burning platform to shake up the Life Science industry in its (lacking) ability to meet and fulfil customer needs through virtual/digital channels? Reflecting back on the day’s proceedings, I truly believe it is. Or, as two senior executives of large pharmaceuticals stated: “If I had to describe the progress of digital transformation in our industry a year ago, I would describe it as the race of the turtles”, followed by “The silver lining of this horrible pandemic situation is that we are adopting these tools and modalities, and for digital practitioners like myself there is a whole new sense of urgency and support for the type of work that I do, which is really frankly invigorating and exciting to be a part of.

What also came through strongly from panel discussions, key notes and various conversations on the digital booths was that the life science industry is doubling down on driving digital efficiencies. Companies are achieving efficiencies in their back, middle and front-end operations all to improve patient care and HCP interactions. It was very encouraging to frequently hear the term “customer obsession”. Words that traditionally would see a tone down in corporate mission statements from Life Science organizations but are now at the forefront of executive’s minds and actions.

The question raised however, was how to action these mission statements within an organization. One way in which to do so will be through focused teams that will underpin and drive digital efficiencies and customer obsession agendas. Putting in place an operating model in which digital teams can succeed is paramount if companies want to gain full value from their initiatives. The Summit revealed additional insights on how digital/MCE teams can succeed, including:

  • A willingness to break down internal silos. Having functional alignment on the cascade of campaign materials, or on the support organization for HCP / patient services ultimately impacts the customer experience.
  • A lens on contextualised data to gain further insight into the WHAT and WHEN of multichannel customer engagement.
  • Robust and agile operations to enable effective actioning on new customer insights.
  • A dedication of time and resource on learning and experimentation.

The latter half of Day one of the day was spent looking beyond our immediate situation into the future state of the industry. Primarily, speakers were challenged to share perspectives as to how technology will change the future of health, medicine and biopharma. As expected, while much of the industry’s focus is influenced by COVID-19, much greater patient engagement in the future is definitely on the agenda — something that many pharma organizations are battling with today (for more info read our upcoming CXQ Patient report). Other takeaways on the future state from various sessions are:

  • A large move to virtual and automated HCP interactions, leading to enhanced diagnosis and long-term disease support.
  • Data will be the cornerstone of improved medical care by providing pre-emptive support to patients.
  • The future of clinical trials will be driven by AI and integrated technologies including IoT.

Overall, Day one of the Summit proved to be a marker of an industry that slowly is looking beyond the pandemic and is placing customer experience at the heart of its (digital) operations, beyond mere lip service.

Samuel Anker

Samuel has four years of experience as a digital analyst using data to tell stories and solve key client customer experience and digital challenges.

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