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  • DeWayne Manning

7 questions to select the right e-services

e-services illustration

Technology is an enigma.

It's ironic that something that can be so incredibly complex is actually supposed to make things simpler. This holds true in the pharmaceutical industry, especially when it comes to e-services.

What was designed to make FTE-driven, labor-intensive HUB processes more streamlined, efficient, and affordable can prove to be the most challenging part of your product launch.

In a marketplace rich with options — from types of services to quality of vendors — asking the right questions on the front end is more important than ever.

In today’s marketplace, technology conversations should be part of every launch strategy. We advise our clients to ask the following questions to understand what their patient population/product needs are, and who can best meet those needs:

  1. Which e-services are really best for your patients and product journey? Some products only need an electronic benefits investigation, while others benefit from an entire suite of services that may include e-prescribing, electronic prior authorization, e-signature, etc. To avoid overspending, it’s important to know when you need a Rolls Royce and when a Honda will do.

  2. If you’re considering multiple services and vendors, will your platform be fully integrated and truly streamlined? No one is happy, especially your patients, prescribers, and executives, if your programs aren’t cohesive, and your reporting isn’t comprehensive. If you’re not positive that your services and systems will work together, then it’s not the right approach.

  3. Do you understand HOW your vendors are delivering their services? The how matters. Everyone can deliver electronic services quickly today, but it's important to understand if their methods are reliable, accurate, scalable, and sustainable.

  4. If you build your own technology platform, how well will vendors be able to plug into your existing solution? Some of the best e-services today are homegrown, but they have to be able to work with outside solutions to be an effective long-term strategy.

  5. How will you measure the success of your e-services? The metrics of yesterday may no longer apply. Speed is still a key performance indicator, but with e-services, everyone can be fast now. Does measuring something like accuracy make more sense going forward?

  6. How well do you understand your vendor’s proposal? How complex is the solution? And the build? How long will it take to launch? How expensive will it be to roll out and maintain? All proposals are not created equal, so it may be crucial to enlist outside help to ensure you’re comparing apples to apples.

  7. Who's best suited to help you through this journey? Unless you have internal expertise around these services, and this is your core competency, you may need a good adviser who understands where you're going and how best to get there.

Technology will undoubtedly have a positive impact on the specialty pharmaceutical business. And, within the right context, e-services can help to make or break a brand.

Archbow Consulting works with brand and market access teams to fully understand the needs of unique products, then find the best technology solutions to meet those needs.

Contact us today to get started on the right e-services approach for your product.

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