Client: US affiliate of a large pharmaceutical company
What we found: The client managed multiple franchises, each with its own sales force. While the Healthcare Compliance Office went to great lengths to keep compliance policies updated, and ran periodic training programs, keeping the sales force up to speed on the latest compliance guidelines was a huge challenge. Between the pressures of day-to-day sales activities and increasingly complex business practices that varied across franchises, the client felt exposed and at risk. Further, the sales organization viewed the Compliance Office as a bureaucratic organization, out of touch with modern training and communication techniques.
What we did: We worked with the client to design and implement an iPhone app that provided personalized compliance content to sales reps as and when they needed it in the field. We identified typical sales scenarios and activities that are particularly susceptible to compliance risk. For each of these we developed specific watch-outs and best practices. The app was designed and indexed based on the sales activity. For example, if the sales rep was in the midst of an HCP interaction, then all the compliance policies that related to interactions were readily available in the iPhone at touch of a button.
The Result: A much more educated, more secure sales force. The client received very positive feedback on the initiative from the sales reps. This, and other similar initiatives designed around web-based learning have transformed the image of the HCO in the organization. They are continuing with many new enhancements and additional scenarios on the iPhone app.
Analysis: To be effective compliance has to be integrated into the day-to-day business practices as they occur, not as an additional checkpoint distinct and often at cross purposes with business objectives. This requires more than just training. It requires a change in attitude. Successful, cost effective and ongoing compliance needs to start with a clear understanding of business processes. Compliance policies and guidelines have to explained and understood in the context of these processes. Getting there, and staying there, requires innovative and ongoing training and communications. The sales leadership has to be front and center in compliance messaging.