Academic journal article Journal of Emerging Trends in Educational Research and Policy Studies

Pharmaceutical Product Marketing and ICT: Implication for Education and Policy in Nigeria

Academic journal article Journal of Emerging Trends in Educational Research and Policy Studies

Pharmaceutical Product Marketing and ICT: Implication for Education and Policy in Nigeria

Article excerpt

Abstract

This paper focuses on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in pharmaceutical product marketing and its implication for education and policy. Data for the study was obtained from 76 pharmaceutical firms in southwest Nigeria which comprised of about 95% of the pharmaceutical companies that were into manufacturing of drugs in Nigeria. The categories of firms surveyed include retail pharmacy, combination of wholesale and retail pharmacy, wholesale pharmacy, and manufacturing pharmaceutical companies that were also involved in drug importation or contract manufacturing. The study found that pharmaceutical companies were using considerable ICT for their product marketing especially customized software. However, there was no explicit guideline and policy for the usage of ICT for marketing pharmaceutical product in the region. Furthermore, while ICT did improve both the efficiency and effectiveness of the decision-making process through the use of software packages, frequency of training was strongly and positively correlated with literacy level. The paper concluded that though increase in the adoption of ICT will continue to change the structure, content and quality of product marketing operations, adequate education and policy for deliberate training particularly for production and marketing activities in the industry cannot be overemphasized. Moreover, with the growing and rapid development in the ICT sector permeating every other sector of the economy; it would be increasingly difficult for firms to compete in the global front without corresponding upgrading of their information and communication technologies for faster and improved product marketing

Keywords: ICT, pharmaceutical, product, marketing, education

INTRODUCTION

Changes in the business workflow process call for tools that assist employees and managers in accessing data critical to their work. Decentralization of data and work decision making requires an efficient communication system. Especially with the increase in urbanization, per capital income and noncommunicable diseases driving the demand for medicines; one has reason to believe that pharmaceutical product marketing in Nigeria will need ICT to make healthcare more accessible and widespread throughout the country and beyond (BM1, 2014). Information technology has already revolutionized every sector and world of work (Aderemi, 2006). Areas such as accounting, engineering, manufacturing, warehousing and logistics have not been left out of ICT innovations and development. The application of ICT to sales and marketing was a major breakthrough in the enterprise information systems (Bandra and Davis, 1996). In Nigeria, Aderemi and Oyebisi (2012) reported on the rapidly growing ICT industry to support the industrial sector. This consists of players involved in hardware and peripheral assembly and manufacturers, solutions providers, educational and training services, software development, marketing and information systems to manage and predict performance in firms amongst others.

In this age of knowledge economy, information is a valuable resource, which enables a business to steer in the right direction to achieve its objectives, attain a competitive advantage and to be administratively more efficient. A pharmaceutical business executive need to be informed about marketing events so that he can make reasonable decisions based on facts rather than assumptions (Anderson and Edward, 1990). ICT create inter-relationship among businesses, expanding the scope of industries in which a company must compete to achieve competitive advantage. Information and communication technology allows pharmaceutical companies to coordinate their activities irrespective of geographic locations. Thus, ICT affects the ways companies operate (Porter and Miller, 1985). In this paper, focus is placed on contemporary product marketing in the pharmaceutical firms in southwestern Nigeria and what this means for educational activities, information technology advances and policy directions for legislation in the sector. …

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