We’re all familiar with the story of Goldilocks and The Three Bears. One bed too soft, one too hard, but the third just right. Similarly, that glass slipper only fit perfectly on Cinderella’s foot. Bad luck for those evil step sisters of hers. And tough luck for those not quite right Prince Charming type fellows that tried to awaken Sleeping Beauty and Snow White. Sorry boys, the ladies aren’t waking up for just anyone. Noticing a trend yet? In the world of fairy tales, there’s only ever one right fit that leads to happily ever after.
Call it pickiness or perfectionism, there’s something to be said for not settling for second best. It’s exactly what you should do in your pharmacy when it comes to picking the right technology and pharmacy point-of-sale system. But what if Cinderella gets a little flat footed in 10 years and that glass slipper doesn’t fit exactly right anymore? I definitely don’t envy her, those glass slipper induced blisters.
While no story book character will actually ever have to navigate the tricky waters of growth and change, your pharmacy probably will. What works for your pharmacy today, may not be the right fit in a few years or even a few months. That doesn’t mean you should be afraid of making a decision about new or updated technology just because circumstances might change. Still, you don’t want to have to throw everything out and start from scratch just because your pharmacy business grew. That’s why it’s so important to keep the concept of scalability in mind as you plan for your pharmacy’s future.
The Importance of Scalability in Pharmacy Technology
When you’re thinking about scalability, you first need to identify where you are now and what you need to solve current problems and inefficiencies. Defining your baseline requirements will help you to narrow your search parameters. But you can’t’ stop there, even though it can be tempting just to throw a Band-Aid on the problem with a less robust system and call it good. Making sure your systems can grow with your business will save you money and a good deal of frustration as your business changes and grows. So take some time to identify your goals. Where do you want to be in 1 year, 5 years, or more? What will your pharmacy technology need to be able to do in order to help you meet those goals and run efficiently when you get there?
Once you’ve got your needs and goals in mind, and you’re looking for the right fit, there are two important things to keep in mind. First, look for a solution that offers multiple levels and can easily be scaled up right along with your business. You don’t necessarily want to buy the comprehensive software suite that you might need when your pharmacy grows to need a robust inventory management solution, but you definitely need to make sure that you can easily add that on to a more baseline system without rebuilding your technology scheme from the ground up.
The other important side to scalability of your pharmacy technology, and especially your pharmacy POS system, is that it can play well with others. It may seem convenient to have a pharmacy system and pharmacy POS system wrapped all into one, but what if you do need to make a change somewhere down the line? You’ll be locked in with one provider and face the dilemma of limited options or starting over with both systems when you may not need to.
So here’s how we handle scalability at RMS. We can scale the system from a 1 register apothecary style pharmacy with very little front end, to multiple registers with programs available for advanced inventory control, purchasing & receiving and more. Multiple locations can also easily be linked and managed as your business grows. We also interface with over 25 different pharmacy systems so you’ll never be locked in with a single provider. We always look forward to helping pharmacies find the perfect fit.
Karen Deckard came to RMS with a background in retail and customers service, and was initially brought on board as a Sales Assistant and managed IIAS certifications for RMS’s pharmacy POS customers. Today, Karen works as a Customer Success Manager, striving to provide independent and institutional pharmacies with the tools and resources they need to succeed in today’s competitive pharmacy market.