When you think about mobile technologies, what most likely comes to mind is the concept of efficiency and increased productivity. What you might not realize is that mobile solutions can also boost a company’s profits or save money. This holds true of the life sciences industry. When field service technicians use mobile technologies, they can actually improve their firms’ bottom line – read on to learn more.
In the life sciences industry, field service technicians that repair patient devices or lab equipment play a vital yet underappreciated role. They are the ones who see firsthand how products function (or in some cases, don’t).
On every call, technicians observe what’s going well and what’s going wrong with devices or equipment. Their knowledge and experience helps them predict what problems will inevitably arise. However, most product developers don’t realize how valuable field service technicians’ insight is. As a result, they ignore it or don’t even ask for it, which leads to products that don’t work properly and don’t satisfy customers.
If product developers took advantage of mobile solutions to tap into field service technicians’ knowledge, they could build products with fewer flaws or glitches that would better satisfy customers. In the paragraph below, an example will illustrate how this would work.
We’ll use the example of Nova Med Devices. Nova Med manufacturers smart insulin pumps. The pump automatically adjusts insulin delivery in patients; if glucose levels fall too low, the pump suspends delivery until the levels rise to a certain threshold.
The pump passed regulatory approvals and is now on the market. There seems to be a problem, though – the pump can sometimes misread glucose levels. Field service technicians have noticed an uptick in calls related to this specific malfunction.
Sam and Carrie are field technicians at Nova Med. They’ve compared notes and realize that they’re both responding to service calls for the same issue. Sam and Carrie are concerned about the amount of calls – right now, the number is manageable, but it could grow, and unhappy patients and shareholders could hurt Nova Med’s reputation.
This is where mobile technology comes in. During the next call for misread glucose levels, Sam and Carrie open up a mobile app that lets them record notes on a particular problem. Both Sam and Carrie flag their notes so that the product development team see them. Jamie from the product development team sees two notes that are high priority. She reads them and realizes there’s a growing problem.
The next day, the product development team meets with field service technicians to discuss why the pump sometimes misreads glucose levels. Together, they’re able to fix the problem.
Thanks to the improved communication that mobile technologies facilitate, Nova Med avoids many of the costs it would have borne if the problem had spiraled out of control. The company maintains the trust of its customers and shareholders.