The Challenge of Developing Medical Affairs Training

Scientifically inquisitive and competitive individuals gravitate to Medical Affairs. 
They have achieved the pinnacle of academic success. Medical Affairs is often the
largest group of Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) in an organization. How do get
them back in the classroom?

Developing training that challenges and engages Medical Affairs associates can be a challenge. 


Medical Affairs audiences are difficult to engage because they already possess knowledge and skill sets far above the average employee. They know the history of the field, wrote the book chapter, performed the benchwork, or developed the study protocol. 

We understand. We’ve been MSLs, managed Medical Affairs field teams, and worked in Training and Operations. We understand the challenges and know how to navigate and overcome them.


Extremely Busy
Medical Affairs personnel are in constant motion.  Whether in the field or in the office, they are engaging and sharing knowledge with others. They barely have time to complete their administrative tasks.  Fitting in training is a challenge.
'I already know it'
They may know a great deal, but the data is always changing and evolving.  There is still something new to learn or a unique perspective to view old data sets.
Training Mindset
It is common to feel as if studying books for knowledge is passed.  Your team took the classes and scored well on the tests.  They completed years of Residency and Internships. However, we are living in a world requiring continuous learning and refinement of our skillsets.
Clunky Systems
Systems to deliver and track training have improved tremendously.  Your teams remember how it used to be and don’t realize that performance-enhancing material can be a click away.
Lack of Relevance
No one wants to spend valuable time participating in training that is not relevant to the immediate job at hand. Material prepared for your team must apply to their role, their concerns, and their opportunities.
Stale Content
There is no one size fits all for performance.  Sometimes you read a magazine, sometimes you watch the TV, and other times you are on a mobile device. The same is true of learning.  Maybe a podcast will serve the need.  Other times, an annotated PDF followed by a scenario module using the information in the field.  Providing the same uninspired material in repetition will not move the team forward.
The firewall that protects sensitive corporate data also makes it difficult to access assets when you are in the field or outside of the office at a remote location. Medical Affairs teams need flexible systems that provide content at the time of need.
Mobile Ready
Audiences spend less time in front of desktops and laptops.  Life revolves around mobile devices.  Medical Affairs training must be responsive to the reality of audience consumption.
Data Updates
Journal articles release constantly. Conferences disseminate potentially paradigm-shifting data. Respected organizations routinely publish new guidance documents.  Your organization updates standard operating procedures.  Curation and guidance on priority information help the Medical Affairs team work productively.
Competitive Landscape
The pharmaceutical industry evolves constantly. New products enter the marketplace.  Old products lose patent protection. Pipeline molecules cause excitement with each new clinical trial. Medical Affairs tracks both internal and external landscape events.
Individual Needs
Support needs differ across the Medical Affair spectrum.  Experience levels differ.  Performance gaps change. Medical Affairs Learning & Development creates learning pathways and experiences for disparate audiences.
Personnel Turnover
Employees get promoted while others leave the company. Retention efforts do not always work and it is a very competitive marketplace. Training new employees can be time-consuming, but automation is possible.
No matter how knowledgeable your team is – they can strive to achieve more.  In fact, they must.  The pharmaceutical industry is evolving. If your team is treading water, then they are falling behind. Change is the only constant.

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