SOURCE: Cutting Edge Information

Cutting Edge Information

November 17, 2014 05:08 ET

More Than 55% of US Pharmaceutical Call Center Agent Training Is Dedicated to Product Information

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC--(Marketwired - November 17, 2014) - As pharmaceutical call centers field increasingly complex inquiries, product information forms the bedrock of knowledge for successful call center agents. A new study from Cutting Edge Information shows that US pharmaceutical companies spend more than 55% of training time focused on product information.

The report, "Medical Information and Call Center Performance: Building New Practices to Meet the Evolving Needs of HCPs and Patients," found that pharmaceutical companies around the world dedicate a large portion of their call center agent training to product information. Among European call centers 46% of the training time is spent on product information and emerging markets call centers spend 49%.

The free availability of information online has translated into different types of questions being asked of call center agents than in the past. As patients and HCPs use the internet to answer simpler questions that used to be directed to call centers, these agents must now be prepared to deal with more complex calls about drug interactions, side effects and other issues.  

"Because training is so extensive for call center agents, many medical information teams prefer to hire highly educated personnel," says Jacob Presson, Senior Analyst at Cutting Edge Information. "Today, companies look for a broad educational background for agents, including PharmDs and a mix of nurse practitioners or physician assistants."

While the general focus of call center agent training on product information remains consistent across most companies, secondary foci vary. Companies working in more established markets concentrate training on database/CRM navigation and compliance. Database navigation training ensures that agents are able to quickly access information via sophisticated, often proprietary, CRMs.

"Medical Information and Call Center Performance: Building New Practices to Meet the Evolving Needs of HCPs and Patients," available at, contains benchmarks and best practices to improve medical information call center performance -- especially critical as these teams take on more responsibilities despite limited resources. Highlights include:

  • How to structure, staff and train medical information teams for optimal efficiency
  • Which key performance indicators best gauge call center effectiveness
  • Methods for preparing teams to expertly handle increasingly complex medical information inquiries.   

For more information about this medical information and call centers report, contact Elio Evangelista at 919-403-6583.

Contact Information

    Elio Evangelista