With an incredible wealth of healthcare knowledge at the hands of the average consumer, the symbolic “big data set” in pharma is more complex than ever. As these individual searches from consumers for healthcare needs have created a treasure trove of information, the company that is able to extract this data and personalizes it based on a consumers need will have the advantage coming into 2018. 
Many have called this the Amazon experience. Amazon gives recommendations based on previous searches or purchases. A healthcare company with the ability to provide this kind of service will have the competitive advantage when it comes to servicing the new age customer. In the past, this kind of analysis was the domain of individual analysts and consultants. With the advent of machine learning and programmed analytics, espoused by companies like Amazon and Apple, it will be the responsibility of the pharmaceutical companies themselves to manage and link the data for actionable insights. 
With this increase in patient choice and empowerment, the pharmaceutical company will find that it adds value to the customer beyond the pill towards the realm of recommendations. Similarly, doctors are beginning to shift from diagnoses and treatment towards holistic patient support. As a result, medical providers themselves are looking for partnerships that will facilitate them in offering this kind of general care that improves patient outcomes and overall customer satisfaction. 
The pressure to offer new platforms to patients will only become heightened as companies like Amazon continue to refine their algorithms to better serve their customers. As a result, the machine learning and AI based model it currently uses will become the standard customer expectation for digital experiences. The pharmaceutical company able to offer this kind of experience first and most efficiently will be the one with the clear competitive advantage as digital transformation marches forward. 

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