The power of insight and partnerships in defining experiences and customer journeys

3 min read
Jun 17, 2020 12:00:00 AM

Just like everyone else, we have been reflecting on what will happen in the Pharmaceutical Industry after this pandemic has passed. This is the second of our three latest articles on priorities and areas of focus for leaders navigating out of lockdown.

We’ve read the articles that have been published and listened to our clients and we understand that the changes could be enormous. We know that we are seeing a tipping point in technology adoption and the need for greater collaboration across the industry, with new partnerships being formed almost daily.

But then, we stepped back to consider whether the principles for success will really change that much, and we decided that there are two things that have become even more important than before, and where a level of innovation will be needed.

Empathetic understanding

Depth of customer understanding and using insight will enable companies to define rapidly how experiences and customer journeys are changing. We know that for some patients the comfort of their own home is actually increasing the quality of conversations with their treating physicians, for others they are now experiencing remote consultations with more than one member of their multi-disciplinary team, resulting in the ability to agree the right holistic treatment plan.

Building a knowledge base about what is changing for patients and their care teams and using this to define where the new pinch-points will be in the customer journey - where the customer journeys might diverge and what interventions will help the most, will allow companies to help solve the new challenges and help patients to achieve better outcomes.


Knowing how to develop and maintain strong relationships remotely means finding novel ways of engaging customers through rapid adoption of new technology and partnering to deliver new solutions that solve challenges within the changing patient journeys. As everyone switches to more and more digital communication the real trick is to be heard amongst the noise and confusion.

We also see one big danger, that will again need innovation and partnering. There will be so many therapy areas where routine screening has been disrupted and needs to rapidly catch up. This means that prevention will become more important than before and may result in a change of strategic direction for the industry.

On the positive side we expect to see far better diagnostic services, lots of the capital investment and platforms being installed for COVID-19 testing will be available to be easily repurposed to use in other disease areas later. Through working with diagnostic service companies there is the opportunity to build on the increased perceived value of testing and ‘catch up’ to prevent longer term health issues.

So, we believe that those who use insight well, embrace partnering and find novel, impactful ways of engaging customers will be well placed to thrive in the future.

These build on the factors for success that we identified in our previous work on how a portfolio approach brings value to customers, leading us to believe that this is the right time to examine your portfolio strategy and explore how you can leverage your strengths and knowledge to:

  1. Break the customer journey apart - not everyone will like the new world, some will want to go back to the old ways as quickly as possible, whilst others will embrace the benefits of engaging remotely with their treatment teams
  2. Define the most likely scenarios that you need to plan for
  3. Decide where (and if) testing and prevention fit

And if you’d like help to map your changing customer journeys, to think about using design thinking to identify new services and partnerships, or to explore likely future scenarios and their impact on your brand, portfolio or franchise strategy - we’d love to talk to you.

Here is the first article in this series - "Anticipating the new drivers of behaviour in Healthcare".

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