SMART 2016: Judges’ criteria
Entries in the Best Education & Training category are assessed against a range of formal criteria, such as whether they increase understanding and knowledge in quantifiable terms, and how successful they are in establishing or re-enforcing a product’s position in pharmacy.
We spoke to a selection of SMART judges to find out what else they look for in an effective training package. Some key themes emerged: relevance to specific training needs, clear objectives and strong execution, with an emphasis on factual accuracy. Accreditation from independent organisations such as the NPA was another important factor, as it guarantees that training has met a minimum standard.
There was a broad consensus that, while branded training can deliver many benefits, it is important to maintain the distinction between this and category-led training. Our respondents identified the most effective approach as one that prioritises both the development of knowledge of a condition and appropriate positioning of a product.
Finally, we asked the panel for their thoughts on how technology might disrupt traditional paper-based training, and whether they have seen any evidence of this in their professional lives. Few had encountered mobile training materials on tablets or smartphones, but one pharmacist thought it could make it more convenient to access materials outside of working hours, though small screen sizes were cited as a potential downside. Despite competition from newer formats, paper materials were considered the most accessible way of delivering training, though respondents saw the benefits of offering users a choice of platforms to suit individual preferences.