Supply chain management is an aspect of the health care sector that is commonly overlooked by tech-savvy clinical teams, but simply put, hospitals and small practices rely on a steady flow of materials and equipment to promote maximally effective operations. As the digital age advances, the procurement processes that fulfill these needs become increasingly complex to craft and maintain, requiring that decision-makers place even greater emphasis on efficiency in the supply chain.
I urge health care leaders to refocus their efforts on materials procurement in 2015 and develop stronger ERP systems to ensure that their financial and operational choices remain in line with their overarching objectives.
Data Fuels the Health Care Supply Chain
Strong foundations of digital information are critical to any business process in the modern era, and the case is no different in the health care environment. In fact, clinical operations demand an even higher level of insight and intelligence when it comes to the procurement of materials and tools. According to an article from Supply Chain Digital, organizations in this sector require precise inventory management
solutions in order to properly gather and organize this data, in addition to a high standard of visibility to remain accountable to various departments and stakeholders.
Analytics platforms are also becoming more vital to the supply chain side of the health care operation, as executive leaders are eager to boost the efficiency of their sourcing and procurement techniques in a proactive manner. Rather than relying on guesswork when optimizing the supply chain, leaders now have access to data that supports stronger decisions and reduces risk when weighing options. An article from Health IT Consultant showcased the opinion of Franco Sagliocca, supply chain director with Mount Sinai Health System, who emphasized the role of analytics.
"When we get information flowing seamlessly through systems, other work can be fueled and we can make huge gains in efficiency," Sagliocca told the source. "For example, when we capture the data used to generate a purchase order, we can keep that information to track against recall management systems, contracting opportunities and negotiations, conversions and more."
Management Solutions Prove Invaluable
While many health care organizations deploy in-house software to manage materials and drive their procurement efforts, many of these legacy systems are out of sync with the speed and precision of the modern supply chain. Decision-makers in the sector should revamp their operations with ERP health care software
for a stronger, analytics-driven future.