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Pharmaceutics

Multifunctional Online Platform: Enabling New Business Model in Pharmaceutics

Overview


The project was initiated by a startup from Saudi Arabia, where the direct advertisement of prescription drugs to the public is prohibited. Pharmaceutical companies rely on sales representatives who promote the products to healthcare professionals (HCP) through face to face meetings.

Challenge

The business idea was born after a new regulation was issued restricting the work of pharmaceutical representatives only to Saudi citizens, thus disrupting the market which is heavily dependant on the expatriate workforce. This created the need for pharmaceutical companies to source and build direct relationships with the individuals who qualify for the job.
We were approached with the requirement to develop a multifunctional system that will bring health care professionals together and facilitate their onboarding by pharmaceutical companies.This product offers a number of challenges. Due to the fact that the client’s requirements for functionality are extensive and there are certain budgetary constraints, smart use of funds is critical. We suggested using 3rd party libraries to implement some elements of the functionality. However, the range of ready-made solutions available for use within the country is limited due to the fact that the country remains a relatively closed one.

Our solution

Since it is an entirely new concept, a benefit hypothesis will be tested: a web-based platform, offering a comprehensive functionality, will provide a dedicated place for interactions, value exchange, and allow foreign pharmaceutical companies to build a network of local sales reps. This will help to address the challenges created by the changes in local legislation.
Our client has a vision of a product that will provide extensive functionality and will continually deliver value to the registered users. The platform will have two types of registered accounts: corporate and individual. The core functionality will include:• Social network, online conferences, audio and video chats, multimedia file sharing.• Statistics, analytics, and reporting, which will enable pharmaceutical companies to monitor and evaluate the work of their sales reps.• HR section is the core functionality providing registered corporate users access to a database of potential sales representatives, and enabling individual users to find a job with the desired company.• Online Courses, another key functionality that enables value proposition delivery. Medical professionals are required to undertake regular Continuing Medical Education courses to maintain their license. The CME courses and expert content is provided by registered pharmaceutical companies.
Agile Software Development
We implement iterative approach in our work. This calls for the development of the most valuable features first and allows for incremental improvement of the product. However, before the incremental development work commences we always start out with the Exploration stage in accordance with SAFe Continuous Value Delivery Pipeline.We clarified our clients’ requirements and helped shape an achievable vision for the product by identifying optimal technical realization. This means that product features must be relevant to the users’ needs and development cost should be realistic. For that, we used Lean-Agile Procurement Canvas и Impact Map. Then, using InVision, created lo-fidelity prototypes, and then mockups to determine the functionality blocks to be developed.
Technical Solution
The platform will be delivered through a web- and cross-platform mobile application; the backend and database will be located in the local server or cloud server. The mobile application is planned to be based on NativeScript, a cross-platform mobile development framework, which will facilitate the adoption of the platform among users of iOS and Android mobile phones.
The solution will have a modular architecture, which builds in scalability, replaceability, as well as brings comprehensive business advantages. Modular architecture means each part of functionality will be implemented as a separate application. This will ensure their seamless integration, and changes in one module will not affect the work of others. This will allow servicing the market demands effectively by adding and integrating new features without unnecessary delays.

Results:

After a few iterations, the following Minimum Marketable Features (MMF) have been developed: user registration, authorization, and user management. The product is being further developed in accordance with the client’s vission.
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