The NHS now works in a world where virtual interactions, integrated systems, instant access to patient data and on-demand expert support are increasingly expected to be available. Digital capability is being championed by NHSX with activities like the Digital Aspirant Programme and digital playbooks for therapy areas such as asthma. As customers’ working-life digital solutions increase in sophistication, we must anticipate that they will have higher expectations of the quality and relevance of offerings from life science companies.
So, how can we ensure that we are taking steps to improve our customers’ experience of our brands? Regardless of the tools available, the foundation remains deep customer understanding and empathy. Without this we cannot design solutions that truly address customer needs. We need to fully understand the patient journey and the impact the changes to the structure of the NHS are having on service delivery. We also need to understand customer behaviour; the physical and virtual spaces they use, the information sources they trust, the technology they are using in their working lives, the areas that they feel need improvement and support.
If customers have trusted resources that they frequently use, how can we work with these resources to design and integrate our solutions? If our brand is likely to have a lot of questions that need to be directed to medical information, how can we ensure real-time access both online and when face-to-face interaction is taking place? If we have a range of useful tools on our brand hub, how do we effectively signpost to these resources and how do we ensure the permissions are provided to allow the NHS to integrate these resources into their own online estates? If a third-party has a useful resource in your therapy area, if appropriate, can a partnership be formed, amplifying their resource and avoiding duplication of effort?
Customer-facing roles can increase their value by considering the full pre, during and post call period. This is true for both in-person and remote interactions. Based on the knowledge of the customer, and the permissions in place, value adding information can be shared before calls and questions can be posed to direct the call content and focus; the during – call experience can be augmented with real-time demonstrations and instant access to requested resources; post-call bespoke follow up can be achieved quickly through direction to brand resources, approved third-party content and rapid scheduling of follow up discussions.
Focusing on optimising our customers’ experience of our brands enables marketing and sales teams to develop value-adding solutions tailored to individual customer preferences. For brand teams that focus on deep customer understanding and keep up to date on the evolution of digital solutions and services, there is great opportunity to delight our NHS customers and see the benefits for brands.
With strategy and implementation capability spanning commercial, medical and clinical roles, we are fortunate at CHASE to support life science clients to develop and deliver multichannel plans informed by key customers insights.