How Analytics Outsourcing Became a Competitive Advantage in Medtech

Ganesh Vedarajan

Ganesh Vedarajan, Managing Principal

Taking the next step: Why medical device companies are outsourcing sales and marketing analytics

The customers for our clients are becoming very complex. The way that they make decisions is becoming more sophisticated. There’s now increased competition, so customers are really comparing across a wider set and making decisions.

The decisions are also moving away from clinicians to more administrators making wholesale buying decisions. And so analytics is becoming an important tool that the industry’s using to understand the customer buying behavior.

It’s becoming increasingly used across the board, all the way from prioritizing customers, understanding where hidden sources of value might be within the sources of growth, through to supporting a sales process for the sales organization, to helping, for example, a sales rep understand [that] if they make the next sale, what is the pricing that the customer is likely to get for that one piece of sales.

Much of the focus in the selling process was in supporting the sales rep to have a very meaningful relationship with the physician. And so the need for much deeper analytics wasn’t so important.

The environment is changing, and as there are now more data sources that are now becoming available, analytics is becoming more relevant and a useful tool.

Why the med device industry should outsource its analytics

There isn’t one common data source that gives customers or companies insights about the customers. You have to piece together from multiple data sources.

Managing the data sources is quite complex, so the analytical capability has typically many facets to it. One is the data management capability to link to different data sources. The second is the predictive analytics component to it.

The third is some kind of business intelligence are reporting components, so it’s not two people sitting in headquarters making these decisions, but to support an entire field organization, that commercial organization, with hundreds of sales reps having the relevant information at their fingertips at the time of the sales process.

As the complexity of this role are increasing, they’re finding it hard to scale the internal organization to adapt to this complexity. And increasingly, they are finding not necessarily to completely outsource but to retain that capability but also to complement the capability with an outsourcing organization.

Data management, predictive analytics, business intelligence reporting—[those] truly get cost-effective with scale. And so an effective outsourcing partner who understands the nuances and has expertise in the med device industry—has understanding of the decisions and the data sources—can be quite useful.

And that’s what many of our clients are beginning to realize, and they’re developing a blueprint for how they engage with an outsourcing partner.