Device quality may be the most critical element to the success of a medical devices company. However, that is not all it takes to succeed. Market dominance requires loyalty, organic marketing, and word-of-mouth support, so excellent after-sales service is vital.
Medical device manufacturers, distributors, and agents must incorporate preventive maintenance agreements and field service management into the existing CRM to streamline their services. This will also make it possible to provide more agile support and promotes accountability and compliance.
In this medical device guide, we’ll highlight the advantages of automating field service operations in a medical device CRM like Salesforce.
Improve the Quality of Field Services
A typical medical device company has many priorities. As a result, it is not uncommon for the CRM system to be pushed to the bottom of its priorities. Early-stage companies, especially those seeking a PMA or 510k clearance, may feel like they don’t need a CRM. However, antiquated sales and service tools will not scale with goals for growth.
A CRM platform can help a medical device company automate the scheduling of field technicians and greatly simplify medical inventory management. A company with tens, or hundreds, of technicians will need to ensure that it serves the needs of all customers, in all locations, and use any company device on time. The platform helps the company make the most available human resources and prevents time wastage, schedule and skill overlaps, and reworks.
The CRM platform can also serve as a real-time communication platform between management, technicians, field reps, and customer service. Handling appointments and confirmations, follow-ups, and status updates on a single dashboard dramatically reduces the chances of miscommunication.
One of the top features of modern medical device company CRM platforms is robust data gathering capability. A flexible, scalable CRM platform enables staff to quickly capture data, including signatures on-site using digital forms, reducing the need for administrative staff to enter data for field technicians. This saves the company time, effort, and, in the long run, money. It also eliminates data-entry errors.
Simplify Asset Management
Seasoned medical device companies have historically found it challenging to keep an accurate record of the location and status of all their field device assets. The main reason for this is that the asset management systems they use are rarely centralized. The right digital platform should have asset management and tracking as a central part of the customer and field service.
Modern platforms feature asset tracking, particularly for trunk stock assets that are carried from site to site with customers. It is also robust enough to provide real-time location and status of the assets with minimal lag in data updates. This feature makes it practical to carry out inventory forecasting and improves the accuracy of new order estimates.
Perhaps the best part about asset management features in CRM software is how it captures asset data. The process is automated with barcodes, making it efficient and less prone to human errors. The right platform should be optimizable to accurately capture device and product information, even in remote situations.
Coordinate Installation and Maintenance of Devices
Medical devices are often highly complicated but delicate equipment that requires frequent and timely servicing. As a medical device company grows, it needs to standardize the process of new installation and servicing of existing devices in the field. It also needs to coordinate all the tasks and schedules related to the services, including work orders, invoices, confirmations, and follow-ups.
A good CRM platform must feature automated alerts of when equipment in the field needs servicing. These alerts may be accompanied by work order processing, quotes, and field service scheduling. When installations and servicing are streamlined, they greatly improve device reliability, lower case times, and increase uptime.
Medical device companies must adopt automation-friendly SLAs to predict and schedule the right types of maintenance with the right technicians for the job. Consequently, the quality of service improves significantly when installation and maintenance processes are automated.
Standardization of Workflows and Processes
A medical device company needs to standardize its field services for many reasons. First of all, it saves time and money when staff adopts a uniform process for all major services. Standardized business workflows are one of the most notable reasons medical device companies succeed or fail.
It is much easier to use a CRM or field service management (FSM) platform when company workflows and processes are standardized and documented. Functions such as work orders, work schedules, field staff dispatching, work documentation, and asset tracking can be done both remotely in the field and in the office.
As a part of the standardization of workflows, manual processes such as invoicing and follow-ups should not create paper trails that demand manual data entry for administrative staff. Instead, data should be collected in digital forms, which are easily used for analysis and processing.
There are many steps a medical device company can take to streamline its field services. The main goal should be to serve the customer better and make work easier for administrative and field staff.
Using a medical device CRM like Salesforce to manage remote operations is the best way to streamline field services, provide great customer service, and create better patient outcomes. Integrating field service operations in a single CRM solution also leads to increased field service efficiency, less waste, a faster supply chain, and lower costs.