Why should you invest, innovate and launch a new store concept for your pharmacies? There are many factors. Typically, a total redesign for a store happens once every few decades. So, when is the right time to do this time and cost intensive investment? Often, it is dictated by external signals – regulations, competitors, customer expectations, new offers in the market or the desire to offer omni-channel access. Mostly, it is a question of growth and long-term viability. Today’s retail pharmacy faces the following challenges:
- The new generation of pharmacists places a greater emphasis on quality, customer experience, pharmaceutical care and consultation, in addition to paperwork and clerical tasks.
- An aging population. The elderly use more drugs; the market is growing by approximately 3% per year, and older patients have different consumer-patient interaction and pharmacological needs. Typically, the elderly require more supervision and consultation from the pharmacist, particularly when using a new drug.
- Skilled labor shortage. New pharmacists are eager to focus on their clinical tasks, but they are often overwhelmed with managing operations. To make matters worse, there is a shortage of skilled labor, so hiring additional staff is a challenge.
- Rise in generic drugs. An increasing number of generic drugs are eroding profit margins.
Efficiency and operation excellence have not been a primary focus and no major breakthroughs in process optimization (or innovation) took place in past decades. So, pharmacy operations’ efficiency levels are well behind productivity expectations. Customer wait times continue to grow, putting your customers at risk of going to a competitor. Savvy pharmacies will take action to innovate in store design and process optimization in order to:
- Reduce time to serve customer
- Improve lab productivity
- Optimize store plans to maximize efficiency in tight spaces
For additional details on how you can improve efficiency in your pharmacy, read the full article here.