Career Development

What Does a Medical Sales Representative Do?

Find out what a medical sales representative does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a medical sales representative.

Medical sales representatives are the people who sell medical equipment, supplies, and services to doctors’ offices, hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare providers. They work with a variety of products including everything from surgical instruments to pharmaceuticals to diagnostic equipment.

Medical sales reps typically work on commission and must therefore be able to effectively persuade their clients to purchase their company’s products or services. This requires strong interpersonal skills as well as knowledge about the products they’re selling.

Medical Sales Representative Job Duties

A medical sales representative typically has a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Calling on physicians in their offices to promote products or services by educating them on how they can improve patient outcomes with specific treatments
  • Educating physicians on new treatments and technologies that may be beneficial to their patients
  • Coordinating with clinicians, pharmacists, and other members of the healthcare team to ensure that all products are administered safely
  • Creating marketing materials, such as brochures, flyers, or postcards, to advertise products or services
  • Maintaining inventory of products and supplies in order to meet supply needs as they arise
  • Selling products and services to physicians, hospitals, and other healthcare facilities in order to generate interest in new products or services
  • Preparing proposals for potential customers based on knowledge of their organization’s needs and objectives
  • Performing market research to identify new markets or opportunities for existing products or services
  • Educating physicians about new products and services being offered by the company in order to increase sales and generate interest in new products or services

Medical Sales Representative Salary & Outlook

Medical sales representatives’ salaries vary depending on their level of education, years of experience, and the type of company they work for.

  • Median Annual Salary: $86,500 ($41.59/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $165,000 ($79.33/hour)

The employment of medical sales representatives is expected to grow at an average rate over the next decade.

Demand for medical devices and equipment is expected to increase as the large baby-boom population ages and people continue to live longer. As these individuals require more medical care, they will need a variety of new products and services.

Medical Sales Representative Job Requirements

A number of qualifications are necessary to become a medical sales representative, which may include:

Education: Most medical sales representative positions require a minimum of a bachelor’s degree. Some companies prefer candidates who have a master’s degree. Relevant coursework includes biology, physiology, pharmacology, chemistry and business.

Training & Experience: Medical sales representatives typically receive on-the-job training from their new employer. This training may include shadowing a current sales representative or manager to learn the products and services the company offers, the company’s sales process and the company’s sales software. The training may also include learning about the company’s customer base and any special requirements for selling to certain customers.

Certifications & Licenses: While certifications are not always required for a role as a medical sales representative, they can be useful in finding a job and increasing your earning potential.

Medical Sales Representative Skills

Medical sales representatives need the following skills in order to be successful:

Communication skills: Communication skills are essential in sales because they allow you to interact with customers and explain product features and benefits. Effective communication skills also allow you to collaborate with other members of your sales team. You can use communication skills to build rapport with customers and answer their questions. You can also use communication skills to provide feedback to your manager about customer feedback and sales data.

Technical knowledge: Technical knowledge is the ability to understand and explain the features and benefits of a product. This is an important skill for a sales representative because it allows you to explain the features of a product to a customer and help them make an informed decision. It’s important to be able to explain the features of a product in an engaging way so that the customer feels like they’re getting their money’s worth.

Persuasive abilities: Persuasive abilities are the ability to convince someone to do something. This is a very important skill for a medical sales representative to have because they need to convince doctors to prescribe their company’s products. Medical sales representatives need to be able to persuade doctors to listen to their pitch, convince doctors to try their products and convince doctors to buy their products.

Problem-solving skills: As a sales representative, you may encounter challenges that require you to think of solutions. For example, you may need to find a way to convince a customer to buy a product they don’t need. Your ability to solve problems can help you overcome obstacles and achieve your sales goals.

Relationship building: Relationship building is the ability to form connections with others. As a sales representative, you may need to build a relationship with a potential customer to convince them to buy your company’s products. Relationship building can also help you develop trust with your manager and colleagues.

Medical Sales Representative Work Environment

Medical sales representatives work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, physicians’ offices, and pharmaceutical companies. They usually work regular business hours, although they may occasionally work evenings and weekends to meet with physicians or attend trade shows. Medical sales representatives travel frequently, often by car, to visit their territory’s physicians and other customers. They may also travel by plane to attend out-of-town meetings or conferences. The job can be stressful because of the demanding travel schedule and the need to meet sales quotas.

Medical Sales Representative Trends

Here are three trends influencing how medical sales representatives work. Medical sales representatives will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Use of Technology in Healthcare

The use of technology in healthcare is becoming increasingly common, as it offers a number of benefits to both patients and doctors.

Medical sales representatives can take advantage of this trend by becoming familiar with the latest technologies and how they can be used to improve patient care. They can also work to build relationships with vendors who are developing new products.


Patient-centricity is a trend that is seeing patients become more involved in their own care. This means that medical sales representatives will need to develop skills that allow them to communicate effectively with patients and understand their needs.

As patients become more involved in their own care, medical sales representatives will need to be able to provide them with the information they need to make informed decisions about their treatment options. In order to do this, they will need to be familiar with the latest treatments and products on the market.

More Focus on Patient Satisfaction

As customer satisfaction becomes more important in business, medical sales representatives will need to focus on providing excellent customer service.

This means that medical sales representatives will need to be able to listen to customer feedback and respond quickly to any concerns or complaints. They will also need to be able to handle difficult conversations and resolve conflicts in a professional manner.

How to Become a Medical Sales Representative

A career as a medical sales representative can be both rewarding and lucrative. It’s important to consider all the factors that will influence your success in this field, including your personality type, skillset, and experience level.

If you have a strong desire to help people, are outgoing and friendly, and have a knack for selling, then a career as a medical sales representative may be right for you. Additionally, if you have experience in healthcare or pharmaceuticals, that would also be a big plus.

Related: How to Write a Medical Sales Representative Resume

Advancement Prospects

Sales representatives who are successful in their jobs and have good relationships with their customers often are promoted to sales manager. In small companies, the sales manager also may be responsible for other functions, such as customer service, marketing, and product development. In larger companies, these functions are usually handled by separate departments.

Many sales representatives eventually move into other jobs in their companies, such as marketing, product development, customer service, or management. Some leave the sales field altogether and find jobs in other areas of business, such as finance, human resources, or information technology.

Medical Sales Representative Job Description Example

[CompanyX] is a well-respected name in the medical industry, and we are looking for a medical sales representative who can help us maintain our high standards and reputation. The ideal candidate will have a strong background in medical sales, with a proven track record of meeting and exceeding sales targets. They will be knowledgeable about our products and services, and be able to effectively communicate their features and benefits to potential customers. They will be self-motivated and driven, with the ability to work independently to manage their territory and schedule. If you are a passionate and driven medical sales professional, we want you on our team!

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Develop and maintain relationships with key opinion leaders and customers
  • Educate customers on new products, features, and services
  • Achieve or exceed quarterly sales targets
  • Develop and execute territory business plans
  • Attend and participate in national and regional sales meetings
  • Complete required training programs
  • Understand and comply with all company policies and procedures
  • Adhere to all ethical guidelines
  • Maintain up-to-date knowledge of competitor products
  • Update customer contact information and records in CRM system
  • Prepare and submit accurate expense reports in a timely manner
  • Perform other duties as assigned

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in business, marketing, or related field
  • 3+ years of sales experience, preferably in medical sales
  • Proven track record of achieving quotas
  • Excellent communication, negotiation, and presentation skills
  • Self-motivated with a strong work ethic
  • Valid driver’s license and clean driving record

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • 5+ years of medical sales experience
  • Experience selling to hospitals and/or large medical groups
  • Knowledge of the healthcare industry and current trends
  • Established relationships with key decision-makers in target accounts
  • MBA or other advanced degree

Similar Jobs


What Does a Nursing Professor Do?

Back to Career Development

What Does a Senior Policy Analyst Do?