The medical and pharmaceutical sales industry is constantly changing. As an executive search firm specializing in medical and pharmaceutical sales, we have recently seen a shift in the type of candidate some of our clients are seeking. Many pharmaceutical and medical device companies are moving to a more clinical sales approach. To accomplish this, some companies have shifted from hiring those with business to business sales experience to hiring sales representatives who can not only sell; but may also be able to provide value to the client through their clinical knowledge.
Medical products such as laboratory equipment, radiological or surgical products can often involve hands-on demonstration of the equipment. Because of this, adding an employee with clinical skills makes sense. Adding a sales representative with clinical background helps to establish product credibility and customer trust.
If you have a four-year degree in a clinical science, such as nursing, medical technology, surgical technology, radiology etc. you could be next in line for a medical sales position. Review your resume. Make sure this document sells you and your abilities for the position. If you have direct clinical experience with their products or you have strong relationships with physicians in the territory, some companies may overlook your lack of sales experience.
Consider interviewing for clinical support positions within medical device companies. These positions often lead to future sales roles. In the interim, broaden your skills by learning more about sales. There are various sales training classes and books that will help you learn more about this occupation.
Remember, true selling is involves more than some innate personality trait. Sales is a profession. Sales techniques can only be learned by experience and education. Bottom line….don’t assume you can sell a medical device just because you know what it does for the patient. To transition from being a clinician to sales professional, start by learning some basic sales skills.