Preparing for a leadership role is very arduous than it seems. It does not stop at how much and what the leader has accomplished. However, it asks whether these leaders demonstrated values and integrity, functioned as a mentor, and showed trust and respect to their colleagues.
A leader should be holistic and a keen learner in the industry cater to. One such dynamic leader who has deep knowledge about the industry and always remains curious and explorative is Arpit Sharma.
Arpit has served the health industry for over 14 years. His interest in the interdisciplinary field of engineering and quality health care has driven him to achieve a successful career in health technology consulting.
He has been working with Aranca, the global research and advisory firm empowering decision-makers from financial institutes.
We at Insights Success got an opportunity to speak to Arpit about his journey, the company, and its mission. Below are the excerpts from the interview.
Arpit, please tell our readers about yourself and your professional journey so far. What was your inspiration to step into the healthcare sector consulting?
After completing my training in Electrical Engineering and my master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering, I started my career as a lecturer at Thapar University, India. After a short stint there, I began my consulting journey in the Medical Devices industry. Over the past 14 years, I have had the opportunity to work in corporate strategy, innovation, R&D and digitalization functions, corporate IP, law firms, advising firms on various aspects such as technology scouting, technology road mapping, open innovation, start-up acceleration, IP prosecution, and monetization programs.
My drive towards healthcare technology consulting, however, comes from within. My personal interest lies in this interdisciplinary field, where the application of engineering principles is used to improve healthcare quality. This is also in sync with my academic background.
Tell us about Aranca, its mission, and its vision. What role did you play in furthering the development and outreach of your firm?
Founded in 2003, Aranca is a global research and advisory firm empowering decision-makers from Fortune 500 companies, financial institutions, Private Equity, and high potential start-ups with intelligence and insights to make better business decisions. We enable this by bringing to play the right mix of the best data, the best methodologies, and the best talent to deliver value to our clients.
In other words, we are decision engineers. We help our clients to make decisions fearlessly. Our core purpose originates from the philosophy that decision-making or problem-solving is based on information and intuition tempered by experience. Thus, we provide all relevant facts and analyses to help our clients to make informed decisions.
Aranca has five business verticals – technology research, business research, investment research, procurement research, and valuation advisory – that complement each other. We offer research and advisory services to management, strategy, innovation, R&D, legal, and procurement teams. Our customers also include venture capitalists, investment firms, and banks.
My role in the organization is to design strategies that add value to our clients and generate business for my company. We implement these strategies in synergy with our operations, business development, and marketing teams.
In your opinion, what kinds of challenges do today’s medical devices and implant manufacturers face?
I essentially see challenges on three fronts:
Obtaining Patient’s Data: Data is key to success. Today, most major medical device companies are focusing on:
- Ways and means to obtain physiological and clinical data on healthy individuals or patients.
- How identified data could be processed to understand the occurrence of any disease in the future, understand disease progression, take the right interventional decisions, and assess intervention outcomes.
Developing Collaborative Business Models: To obtain the patient’s data, a strong collaboration between patients, medical device companies across the medical value chain, providers, payors, and regulatory system are required. Even collaboration between competitors is a requisite.
When I say collaboration, I am not referring to just business collaboration, but technical collaboration. Currently available wearables, diagnosis devices, and CCIT platforms are developed in silos, and most of them do not talk to each other.
These challenges could be resolved by developing a business model and technical architecture that can address and facilitate the business interest of each stakeholder. I believe governments should work in tandem with private players to develop such business and technological ecosystems.
Overcoming data regulations and security norms: Over the years, medical device companies have learned to overcome device efficacy, safety regulations and meet the expectations of the FDA. Medical device companies seeking to obtain patients’ data often face multiple challenges such as new regulatory hurdles (including GDPR), the need to ensure data integrity and offset data localization norms.
Data security and integrity are especially critical for high-risk and life-saving Class -III devices that are connected to the internet.
What is your opinion on healthcare providers’ aligning their offerings with newer technological developments, especially when it comes to catering to the dynamic needs of the healthcare space?
Healthcare providers can be segmented into three broad categories:
- Promotors: This set comprises those who have readily accepted and onboarded newer technological developments.
- Passives: This set comprises those who are not super-excited about implementing technologies but are adapting to the change given the onset of technological advances.
- Distractors: This set is those who strongly feel that office visits are the best way to administer healthcare.
Some familiar challenges providers face in adopting innovative technologies include a dearth of IT infrastructure in their respective regions, lack of knowledge, skills, and training, not feeling in control of the patient experience, and fear of missing out on some details during patient examinations.
What are the biggest challenges you have faced and the most important lessons you have learned in your professional journey so far?
Just like electricity or water, knowledge flows from higher potential. To be in the research and advisory business, it is essential to be curious, holistic, have deep knowledge about the industry, and stay updated about the latest trends.
The biggest challenge for me is not how to obtain knowledge but how to stay curious and explorative?
What advice do you have for entrepreneurs who want to make a career in the medical devices and implants manufacturers’ consulting business?
COVID-associated lockdowns have provided an enormous impetus to adopting telemonitoring and telemedicine. Entrepreneurs in the medical device and implant manufacturers should focus on two aspects:
- Bringing interoperability of technologies and business models so that CCIT could realize its fullest potential.
- Sustaining the marketing push and efforts to train providers and patients to prevent further slowdown of the digital wave
Where do you see yourself in the future? Also, how do you envision scaling your professional journey in the healthcare sector in the coming years?
Standardization is the next grandiose thing in the telecommunications industry; the automotive industry is also moving in the same direction. I believe there is a need for standardization in the MedTech industry as well, and this is whitespace where I would like to move in as a technology advisor.