Francine Nieto

Consumer Health Consulting Lead

  • Digital Transformation
  • Life Sciences
  • Consumer Health

04 Mar, 2021

What a digital-first approach means for the Consumer Health Industry

Understanding the habits, preferences and changing expectations of digitally savvy consumers has become a priority for consumer health companies. The question is, are consumer health companies equipped to respond to the shift to digital?

In an age where patient engagement and patient centricity are a major focus across all areas of health care, the ability to meet these consumers where they want to be and how they wish to be supported is crucial. The shift to digital has gained momentum with the Covid-19 pandemic as consumer safety and expectations are being prioritised, pushing more and more health care interaction to the digital world. For consumer health companies, as with all businesses, that has meant accelerated demand for online experiences and a further change in shopping behaviours.

While there has been a noticeable focus on digital-first investments in recent years not all consumer health companies have been ready to respond with speed and agility to new consumer shopping behaviours. Many also lack visibility into distribution systems and their customers to respond quickly to stock shortages or to deliver the necessary remote engagement capabilities.

The pandemic has been a wake-up call for some companies and an opportunity exists for them to re-think their digital-first approach to ensure that it is embedded across the organisation and not just an IT or marketing add-on. The barriers to full visibility for these businesses are often the siloes that exist. Although companies have implemented customer relationship marketing (CRM) solutions and other technologies, all too often these systems are used discretely – with sales, for example, using them for sales activities and marketing for their marketing activities without any real intersection.

There are certainly lessons to be learnt from other industries to enable a digital-first organisational structure that begins with cultivating the right mindset to embrace change and accept new ways of working. Chaucer is working with many companies on change management and agile learning activities to support digital transformation from a people perspective, helping to change behaviours and ways of working throughout the organisation.

One global healthcare company we are working with asked us to help them future-proof their supply chain through digitalisation to help them respond quickly to potential risks, such as out-of-stocks. This involved a complete assessment of external drivers and internal challenges including the current organisational structure across 130 countries. We reviewed all costs, KPIs and governance structures by geography and designed a simulator to inform future design thinking. The result was an agreed digital transformation strategy and implementation plan that benefits the entire organisation, supported by a change management plan to upskill individuals and demonstrate how a digital-first approach will support positive change. This was an important enabler.

Keep the momentum going

We sincerely hope the momentum is here to stay and that companies seize the opportunity to use digital to its fullest extent to improve interaction, both internally and externally, to reshape and improve processes and to generate valuable insights.

It is our goal to help customers achieve these objectives. The merger of Chaucer and BIP allows us to further support consumer health companies as they fully embrace digital transformation across their organisations.

We believe that the future winners in the industry will be those with the organisational infrastructure necessary to respond to this increasing shift to digital with speed and efficiency.

To find out more about how Chaucer supports the Consumer Health sector, please contact Francine Nieto;

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