There are multiple ways to manage inventory replenishment for medical device companies. One way is to order based off of usage at time of surgery or creation of the invoice/purchase order. Another way is through par level inventory management. Either way, without accurate, passive data, neither option is going to work.
You need to collect all requesting, shipping and usage data and then have that data trigger actions within your IMS and ERP.
When you manage inventory based on par, often it is done by applying the inventory on hand ratio:
Average Inventory / Costs of Goods Sold x Number of Days in the Year = Inventory on Hand
Once you know your inventory on hand ratio, you can compare it to your sales data to see how much stock is used for given time periods, location, and surgeons. The inventory on hand ratio and sales data used together is one way to help you understand when orders need to be placed and in what quantities. In order to facilitate par inventory predictions, you need accurate, real-time data. In some industries, historical (2-day old or more) is ok, but in the medical device world, with so many variables and complexities, you need to have instant access to real-time information. Reliable current data allows you to be flexible in your process and adjust as needed to any change in demand or behavior.
No matter what formula or algorithm you use to manage par, par management should be automated.
When your sales and case management tool is fully integrated with your operational processes of requesting, ordering, shipping, and receiving and combined with proper par management, you will drive efficient processes. This is because not only will you plan better, but you will have fully automated control as well.
Visibility combined with control enables true efficiency.
Having a comprehensive yet customizable platform will support needed flexibility for future growth.
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A good field inventory solution and/or a wms are worth their weight in gold, a fully integrated medical device specific operations and sales force effectiveness platform is priceless.
A complete tool should be able to or have:
- CRM / Case Management
- Directed Picking & Put-away (Bin Mapped)
- Surgery Scheduling (+ Calendar)
- Active Order Visibility
- Shipping Coordination (FedEx, UPS Integration)
- Customer/Account Management
- Opportunity/Lead Management
- Surgeon Preferences / Preference Cards
- Inventory Control & Visibility (All Locations, All Buckets)
- Auto Product Replenishment
- Commission Calculations
- Expiration Notifications
- Direct Orders
- Send & Receive Tools (Rep to Rep etc.)
- Contract & List Pricing (Real-time)
- Audit/Cycle Counts
- Reporting & Billing
- Image & File Sharing
- Secure HIPAA Compliant Communication
- Mobile Usage Capture
- UDI Compliance
- Barcode Scanning
- RFID Integration & RFID Reconciling (HF/UHF)
- ERP/CRM/EMR Integrations
- Demand Planning Tools
- Consignment/Loaner Management
- Pluggable Workflows (Programmatic Integrations, Integrated Prediction Models)
- Sourcing Matrix Tool
- HIPAA Compliant Communication Platform (Messages, Calendar, Usage, Notes, Files)
- Sourcing Optimization
- Future Stock (Virtual Inventory Assigned to Future Events)
- Atomic Inventory (UDI Ready, Piece Level Tracking, Serialized or Not)
- Hybrid Kitting (Skinny Kits, Kit Management, Kit Versioning, Tracking)
- Cross Boundary Workflows
- Lost & Found (Automatic Cycle Counting )
- Merger/Acquisition Integration
- Par Management
- Multi-Catalog Management
- Loan Optimization (1 Loan Per Day)
- Separate or Combined Sales & Operations Alignment
- Cost-to-Serve Metrics
- Turn Ratio Dashboards
- Sales Metrics / Data (Reps, Leaders, Corporate)
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