How Pharmacy Delivery Software Pays You Back
In theory, it’s easy to agree that a business needs the best tools to maximize its potential – but there’s nothing theoretical about price tags. Software costs money and deciding to spend finite resources requires consideration of whether the software’s benefits will outweigh its costs.
Calculating return on investment (ROI) considers two components: gain of investment and cost of investment. How do these relate to software purchases in the pharmacy industry, and specifically to ROI on pharmacy delivery software? Let’s explore.
How Much $ Will You Make?
Simply put, gain of investment is how much money you’ll generate from the new software. With some software purchases, the potential gain is clear – for example, when your business will enjoy more sales from a new e-commerce platform. But in pharmacy or healthcare, a clear bump in revenue from new sales may not be the best benchmark. What you can look for is a decrease in costs.
We’re all familiar with pharmacy’s obligations to PBMs and regulators. If the prescription filling process does not completely adhere to the rules, the pharmacy may be hit with fines or fees. By choosing a solution that includes safeguards for insurance and regulatory requirements, you’re reducing the likelihood of these fines and fees. The money you don’t pay out is a gain in investment.
Similarly, most new software you’re considering for purchase will have functionality that makes your current workload more efficient. That time you save, along with any additional tasks or customers you can now handle from the time savings, represents another money gain. And don’t forget that your new software will replace an old system that is costing you now, whether it’s licensing fees or manual labor and supplies from pen and paper. Dropping these is another gain of investment.
How Much $ Will You Spend?
Sofware investment costs are what you spend implementing and maintaining it. Think about fees for licensing, tech support, and subscriptions. But also remember the costs of installation and staff training.
Costs are not just line items you must pay.They also include opportunity costs: time people could have spent elsewhere rather than on installing, learning, and maintaining the new system. This can also include an adjustment period of lower productivity. Finally, will your new system lack any functionality you are accustomed to having? If so, include that as an investment cost.
So how do these gains and costs factor into the purchase of delivery software for your pharmacy? Below are some key benefits to weigh against the purchase investment.
Audit Compliance. Increased audit compliance is one of the primary benefits of a pharmacy delivery software like DeliveryTrack®. Clients across the board see a reduction or complete elimination of proof-of-delivery related non-compliance fines. Although the numbers vary by organization and state, it’s not uncommon for the calculated cost from prior years to reduce by 70% to 80%. DeliveryTrack scan percentages for proof of delivery vary by operator, but many achieve rates above 95% daily. This is significantly higher than paper-based systems, where the manifest is often not returned, scanned in, or associated.
Route Optimization. Route optimization has long been recognized by national couriers as an indispensable component in reducing cost. Pharmacies with variable routes benefit the most, but even those with static or fixed routes benefit from optimization. A route with 20 or more stops often sees a 5% to 15% reduction in drive time and distance. With an average route distance across a sampling of customers of 289 miles per day, that’s a savings of 1,144,440 miles per year across 120 vehicles, assuming a 5-day delivery week.
Vehicle Tracking. Many customers indicate that the vehicle tracking capabilities of DeliveryTrack encourage a noticeable level of accountability after implementation. Although not quantifiable, every wayward mile travelled by drivers adds to delivery costs. Without DeliveryTrack, it’s hard to know the extent of the problem; while a high percentage of drivers stick to their route, a small number can add significantly to cumulative costs over the year.
Re-Issue of Medications. In cases where a facility indicates that a medication is missing or was not delivered, pharmacies often choose to simply fill the prescription again and absorb the cost. This is particularly true with generics, where the costs associated with retrieving proof of delivery outweigh the costs of dispensing. DeliveryTrack changes that equation. With its tight integration to DocuTrack®, it’s easier to find a delivery confirmation than re-issue the meds, so re-issue costs are eliminated. The threshold of “when we fill and when we find” is different per pharmacy, but the cost savings can be significant.
Audit Efficiency. The integration between DocuTrack and DeliveryTrack, with associations at an Rx level, can reduce a 100-prescription audit from 6 workdays to 20 minutes. Multiply this savings by the number of audits per year X the number of pharmacies, and the benefits are more than apparent – adding yet another positive factor to the ROI calculation.
Does the ROI of Delivery Software Work for Your Pharmacy?
Although a lot of thought undoubtedly goes into the decision to invest in new business software, it’s key to have confidence that the financial outlay will be outweighed by the financial gains. Consider all the above factors, and any others at work in your pharmacy’s processes, when evaluating if new delivery software is right for you.