Contact Center Solutions Featured Article

Marken Launches Investigator Survey Contact Center

July 23, 2015

When the words “contact center solutions” come to mind, first thoughts tend to be about their inbound functions. This is normal since the experience most of us have with contact centers is when we have a question answered or a problem resolved. However, while the outbound use of such centers for sales and marketing may not be viewed as being as important, they most certainly are. Putting aside the nuisance we feel by people, or machines for that matter, calling us at inopportune times and typically without our permission, there is little doubt that almost every vertical industry relies heavily on the outbound functionality of modern contact centers.

An example of such utility with a vertical focus is the announcement by Research Triangle Park, North Carolina-based clinical logistics organization (CLO) Marken that is has established a call center to contact clinical investigator sites throughout Latin America. The launch is the first of its kind in the clinical logistics industry.

The healthcare clinical supply chain logistics business for those unfamiliar is actually a large vertical. For example, Marken supports over 49,000 clinical investigators in more than 150 countries. It is a specialist in the transportation of investigational medical products and medical devices. It is a full-service logistics provider offering the storage and distribution of clinical trial materials and drug products to investigators or the patients directly, and is a leader in the shipment of biological samples. In addition, it offers services such as shipment lane qualifications as well as GDP, regulatory and compliance consultancy.

The new contact center is based in Miami. Its purpose is to survey thousands of nurses, doctors, and site monitors in Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Colombia, Panama, Dominican Republic and Costa Rica. The surveys will be conducted in Spanish and Portuguese. They are designed to assess investigator satisfaction with their local courier services. Marken maintains a database of 7,000 active investigators in the region and makes pick-ups and deliveries to a majority of them each week. 

Suffice it to say that in the healthcare industry logistics are almost the definition of “mission critical.”  IT is a major reason why the contact center is being established with the idea that it will be maintained for an indefinite period of time so that Marken evaluates how to improve its operations and satisfy its customers.

As Marken explains: “Clinical research activities have been growing steadily within Latin America. Strong interest from sponsors to conduct clinical trials in the region has caused steady growth in the number of new investigator sites...The high number of new studies coming into the region means that investigators work on several protocols at the same time and have less time to deal with logistics and paperwork. Marken wants to help make their lives easier through better communication, electronic booking, and access to a human voice at all times and better packaging technology.”   

Ernest Batista, Vice President of Logistics, LATAM commented, "Marken has historically provided an excellent logistics service to our clients and the investigators who work on their clinical trials.  We are 100 percent dedicated to the clinical trial industry and are market leaders in this region. We intend to remain a leader by providing a quality service while adapting to increasingly stringent regulations associated with more complex clinical trials. We also want to know what the investigator sites need from us so that we may speed the movement of samples, kits and drugs as efficiently as possible and introduce new services if required."

So the next time you think about contact center solutions, remember that outbound functionality is an important part of the customer journey and key to providing a compelling customer experience.   

Edited by Dominick Sorrentino