Medical Sales Careers:
Your guide to understanding what it is, what you need to know, and how to get the ball rolling
Why a Medical Sales Career?
You Want to Make a Difference
Medical Sales is a profession to be proud of. You get to help people and get paid well to do it.
High Average Income
In their 2015 Medical Sales Salary Report, Medreps reported a median base income of $75,000 with a median total income of $125,000.
Opportunities for Advancement
Career advancements for medical sales reps include management positions, specialty lines, territory expansion and training opportunities.
This complimentary surgical sales career action plan is designed to give you the information you need to decide if a career as a surgical sales consultant is right for you and how to get started. It contains a wealth of information for recent college graduates considering this rewarding career. Learn about the industry, if it’s a good fit for you, required knowledge and experience, and what you need to get your first, entry level job. » Read More
Medical Sales In a Nutshell
Medical sales reps are a vital link between manufacturers or distributors and healthcare professionals. Generally their job is to provide technical assistance to surgeons and their operating room staff. Most surgical sales reps use a means of consultative selling, a system of helping with surgical products that are good for the surgeon as well as the patient. Their focus is on representing quality products that when used correctly with the expert assistance of the representative, enhance patient care.
The products themselves can range from artificial joints, to heart pacers, to dental implants. There are thousands of different biomedical implants being used, today, by different medical specialists.
Most positions include detailing the product during a patient’s procedure, often in an operating room or hospital environment. They also include calling on surgeons, specialists or executive level clients in an ongoing process of fostering and maintaining good relationships.
These positions tend to require a high level of expertise in a given area, a thorough understanding of the product you are selling and a proven sales track record.
Medical Sales Careers – 2015 Salary Averages
The number one question we get here at Surgical Sales 101 is about salary. In an effort to provide the most up to date and accurate salary information to you, we’ve provided the most relevant information from a recent Medreps medical sales salary report.
A Day in the life of a Medical Sales Representative
Working with Surgeons, general Physicians, Nurses, hospital staff
Focusing on successful patient outcomes, successful surgeries
Managing and growing sales opportunities for portfolio of medical products
A typical day working as a Territory Manager starts early. Hospital surgeries usually begin at 7:30 AM, but reps supporting those cases should be there much earlier. Arriving by 6:45 is recommended to check and recheck the inventory you provide for the procedures on the schedule and to interact with the operating room team about the up coming cases. Inventory control is an important responsibility since having everything your surgeon may need to perform a successful surgery is vital. Additionally, the inventory you are responsible for includes instruments and implants that frequently exceeds tens of thousands of dollars. Keeping track of these assets is essential to avoid losses and charge backs to your commissions.
Work in the operating room is the most exciting and rewarding part of our job. Here you become part of a team committed to successful surgeries and patient outcomes. The goal of every person in that room is to improve the function and the lifestyle of the patient. Your contribution may at some point play a role in those objectives and when you do, there is no more satisfying feeling.
When not in cases your interactions with the surgeons and hospital staff continue throughout the day. In-service training of nurses and scrub techs allow you to demonstrate your product line and technical expertise. Selling opportunities with your surgeon targets can be advanced with brief conversations that develop your relationships and where you may introduce your surgical solutions to complex surgical challenges.
Later, visits to the physician offices to view x-rays of scheduled cases or to review outcomes of previous procedures provides the chance to visit with your friends working in those offices. Medical assistants, PA’s and residents are often welcoming to a rep that is attentive and helpful with your attention to detail. In the evening, preparation for the next day’s, or newly scheduled, procedures is part of the regular routine. Review or study of medical literature helps further your understanding of surgical procedure and enables you to add value with appropriate support.
A full day. Contributing to surgical outcomes, visiting “friends” and advancing your knowledge is typical of the activity for successful medical device representatives and enables you to stay a step ahead of the competition.
Key Medical Device Sales Responsibilities
A medical device sales representative has a diverse set of responsibilities. Here’s a typical list.
- Maintain and expand sales of company’s portfolio of products in existing accounts and develop new business within assigned territory.
- Adopt a consultative selling approach to develop and maintain long-term relationships with clients.
- Achieve sales targets through efficient and effective sales cycle and territory management; maintain sales base while closing new business in both new and existing accounts.
- Ensure that all administrative tasks (i.e., training modules, expense reports, sales forecasts, etc) are completed promptly and accurately.
- Build relationships with key stakeholders within accounts.
- Develop and execute sales strategies; utilize available resources effectively.
- Implement and maintain the effectiveness of the Quality System.
- Actively manage and grow a dedicated sales territory that includes a large, pre-existing customer base.
Training and Education
Medical device / surgical Sales is a competitive field and prospective employers show preference for candidates with strong, relevant backgrounds. A key to your success is to show that you have the knowledge, the ability, the professional skills and the medical experience to succeed. It’s a challenging mix of skills to acquire for recent college graduates. Why not test yourself to find out if you’re ready to enter this rewarding field? Chances are you haven’t had much experience working in an operating room, wet lab, or are as well versed in medical terminology as prospective employers would like. Naturally, the more experience you can gain the stronger a candidate you will become.
Looking for more? Download our free career-training plan
How do I get started?
Sign up for our free action plan covering the information you will need, in detail, including a survey to see if medical device sales is for you, what your options to get started are, average salary rates, as well as more industry facts and information. Then, if you still want to know more or have any questions we recommend getting into contact with one of our advisors who can go over everything with you on an individual basis.