Proper Inventory Management is essential to the health of any pharmacy. But far too often a pharmacy’s inventory is neglected and left to grow out of control—bloated with surplus and dead inventory. But it doesn’t have to be that way!
Here are 6 tips to help you and your team take control of your inventory woes once and for all.
1. Stop inventory stockpiling
Stockpiling is panic buying. Think Hydroxychloroquine during the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. Stockpiling drugs is not good for your business in three ways. First, it locks up precious inventory dollars on items that could take a long time to fully dispense. Second, you could be buying those drugs at an inflated price hurting margin, and thirdly you could fuel an artificial demand for the drug and push its price higher while reducing supply for those that need it.
2. Keep enough inventory on hand
You cannot dispense what you don’t have in stock. And failure to serve your patients could lead to losing them for a month or forever. In this day and age, independent and smaller chain pharmacies cannot lose any customers! That is why it is imperative that your pharmacy team understands the value of proper cycle counting, demand forecasting, and optimized reorder points. A good pharmacy runs at a 95% service level. A great pharmacy aims to hit 98% or more.
3. Plan for Wholesaler Returns monthly
Your wholesaler reps won’t alert you that certain drugs on your shelves are ready to be returned. And your pharmacists and techs may not even be aware that a sizable portion of your surplus Rx inventory is available to be returned! Making those returns improves cash flow and will elevate the overall well-being of your inventory. Many pharmacies are operating today with a 10-15% return opportunity and don’t even realize it!
4. Reward your pharmacy techs for accuracy
Let’s face it. Your pharmacy techs did not go to school to become inventory control specialists.
None of their coursework prepared them for one of the most important responsibilities they will have—controlling your Rx inventory. Progressive pharmacies incentivize their teams in response to measurable improvement of Rx inventory conditions. Why?… Because it works!
5. Conduct regular reviews
You can’t improve what you don’t measure. Your inventory is no different. Owners, directors, and managers need to take the time to review and really understand the nuances of their inventory. After all, it’s your single largest investment and your biggest expense! Proper inventory analysis; however, is no easy task for independent pharmacies where the owner may work behind the counter, and even more unwieldy for a multi-store operation, especially if the stores do operate cohesively
6. Incorporate automation
So, how do smart pharmacies do it all and get it all right? It is simple – they automate. They rely on technology to do the hard work and then rely on their people to use that technology. Many national and very large regional chains have the funds to build and develop a bespoke software solution—but this is beyond the means of most independent and smaller multi-store chains. But they need not worry. Because there is an extremely cost-effective solution available to them. One that pays for itself typically in less than 90 days! It’s called Datarithm®.
So there you have it. Six tried and true ways for your pharmacy to finally take control of its inventory issues once and for all.
Automation is the Future of Inventory Management
By automating processes and utilizing software to manage inventory, pharmacies can free up time and resources to focus on patient care and take control of their inventory once and for all. Technology should not be seen as a threat, but rather as an opportunity to remain competitive in the market.
With Datarithm®, you’ll have an ally in pharmacy management giving your team the reinforcement it needs to organize inventory and optimize cash flow. We know community health begins with you. Let us keep your business above the wellness line so you can stay focused on delivering quality care.
was built specifically for independent pharmacies of any size and has helped them take control of their inventory since 2005. Datarithm® is more than just cost-effective, it’s powerful yet so easy to use. Watch and learn more about how Datarithm® works. Or, better yet contact Datarithm® now and schedule your FREE, no-obligation consultation today.