Hospitals and healthcare systems that are cramped in a market largely influenced by government-funded programs face the pressure of operating effectively with tight margins. At the same time, executive healthcare buyers know that to stay relevant in terms of technology, large investments must be made.
As a medical sales manager, it’s a conundrum that you are surely aware of.
In this cost-scrutinizing environment, your company’s healthcare sales strategy must devise a process aimed at holding the type of dialogue healthcare buyers are seeking.
The fact is no one person makes purchasing decisions for a new medical device or software. An entire group of decision-makers, from different departments within the hospital or enterprise, must come to a consensus – and the journey to arrive at that decision is long.
In a recent whitepaper written by the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA), healthcare buyer peers were surveyed to explain what they look for in the medical sales process.
The one prevailing criteria almost everyone surveyed agreed upon was ROI. Regardless of the conversation a salesperson is holding with them, the healthcare buyer has a team doing background work to verify your own calculations. This includes talking to facilities that currently use your equipment.
Beyond ROI, the next three critical criteria were also common themes among the healthcare buyers surveyed:
- Tech changes at such a fast pace that healthcare buyers are concerned about the age and obsolescence of your equipment or software. Buyers may hold out if they know new technology is emerging.
- To stay competitive, hospitals and healthcare systems must look for vendors with experience in an area that they are lacking. Sometimes this speaks to outsourcing beyond your software with services like training and technical support.
- Finally, implementation, maintenance and ongoing costs are an important factor as buyers look at the five-year cost of acquisition. Ultimately, they want a vendor that is pushing beyond what’s expected to achieve favorable outcomes.
Also, we shouldn’t forget that improving patient care is a top concern. Does your medical device or software create efficiency, effectiveness and ultimately a smoother-running operation? These improvements mean a great deal in terms of freeing medical staffs’ time to focus on what matters most: the patients. (Likewise, physicians aren’t happy if their preferences are ignored simply to address financial goals.)
Your healthcare sales strategy needs to be informed by the main concerns of healthcare buyers. However, this strategy must be able to cut through the sales talk and offer objective, educational information at the right time in a buyer’s purchasing decision.
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