Interview – The Future of MedTech Sales & Marketing – AliveCor’s Francis White
By NextLevel Life Sciences - November 25, 2014

Leading up to NextLevel Pharma’s 2nd Annual Medical Device Commercial Leaders Forum Europe 2015, we are conducting email interviews with selected members of our prestigious speaker panel to learn more about their thoughts on this vital issue.

*Opinions below are those only of the individual and do not reflect upon corporate strategy or positioning.

For more information regarding NextLevel Pharma’s 2nd Annual Medical Device Commercial Leaders Forum Europe 2015click here.

Francis White, EU General Manager, AliveCor

NextLevel: What do you think makes the current sales and marketing environment in Europe so challenging for medical device manufacturers?  

Francis White: Healthcare spend has been rising year on year and the population demand will continue to expand with the well-known demographic time bomb. Medical device manufacturers are being called upon to go further than previously required by healthcare systems, not just incremental improvements but rather step changes in the cost structure, offering higher levels of efficiency, improved outcomes and cost saving - all simultaneously.

NextLevel: Which trends have you seen on the ways in which the medical device sector approach sales and marketing activities over the past 5 years?

FW:  There has been many trends come and some go, all trying to respond to the changing dynamics of the way the customers want to buy, from expensive restructures, key account management, no-frills low cost supplies, managed service "bundling" and energetic moves to track sales teams with new technology. Whereas all have their place, none of these alone have proven to be the silver bullet that guarantees success in the new world.

NextLevel: How much do you think the marketing and/or sales (as most relevant to you) roles in the device sector are engaging with key customers and increasing their influence?

FW:  In my current context, it is about both top down and bottom up influence in order to change the middle. It is easy for politicians and health care C level executives to demand that medtech brings transformational value but when we do, the inertia in the bureaucracy can bring any change process to a grinding halt. To really be influential in changing healthcare delivery, it's not just about calling on the right people with the right product at the right time but also about influencing at all points along the chain, a time consuming and sometimes frustrating experience.

NextLevel: What’s the best thing for you about working in medical device commercial functions right now?  

FW: I believe like never before that Medical Technology has the power to completely redefine healthcare, to radically shift from a people dependent delivery system to a modern technologically powered future. To move from the broad brush of population medicine to the narrow focus of digital health. This is what so many industry sectors have done before us, and despite all the resistance in place, the change will happen and will suddenly start to accelerate. We are looking over the horizon and it looks very different to the past.

NextLevel: Why is this Medical Device Commercial Leaders Forum event a good idea for people to attend in your eyes?

FW: It is time for Medical Device Commercial Leaders to come together as change agents, as those charged with bringing in the future of healthcare, to a society increasingly in need of the solutions that only we can offer them. There is no more important time in history for the Medtech industry as we have many of the answers to the rising costs, the ageing population and the chronic disease burden. This forum is an ideal way for us to gather, to discuss the challenges and to be encouraged to move things forward and to change the world.

For more information regarding NextLevel Pharma’s 2nd Annual Medical Device Commercial Leaders Forum Europe 2015click here.