Does this story sound familiar?
Reps and distributors request the product you’ve manufactured. Your operations team sends a few kits out into the field as consignment inventory. Time passes and, as often happens with field inventory, one of the kits is misplaced or lost. So, operations gets a request for a new one. And this request is urgent, because the surgery is scheduled to take place in two days. The rep calls up your operations team, upset because “Dr. So-and-So needs it, and if we don’t have it, we could lose this surgeon for good.”
You have no choice but to send another kit. With a high price tag, of course—since nothing you manufacture is inexpensive.
If this storyline sounds familiar, you’re not alone. The orthopedic medical device industry has billions of dollars’ worth of inventory out in the field—and many manufacturers don’t know where exactly that consigned inventory is. Neither the field network nor your operations has access to a system that can track all the moving pieces of consigned inventory. When they don’t know where inventory is, they can’t utilize it effectively. And that situation results in bloated spending—of up to three to seven times the amount of money that should be spent on that particular capital expenditure.
If you don’t know what you’ve got, how much you’ve got, where it is, and whether it’s being used or sitting on a shelf, then you’ve got the same problem as many other manufacturers.
Just as there is a familiar story in this business, there is also a familiar axiom. And it’s this: the longer your product stays out in the field as consigned inventory, the harder it is to find, and the less it will resemble what you sent out in the first place—if you ever get it back.
When you don’t know inventory location, movement point to point, or utilization, it can be extremely difficult to make accurate predictions about capital expenditure. It’s almost impossible to match demand with supply in a way that optimizes working capital. And it’s tremendously challenging to carve out capital commitments for new product development. Under those conditions, it is very difficult to channel your assets effectively toward your strategic priorities, because everyone at your company is chasing his or her tail over inventory—all the time.
But with real visibility into your field inventory, everything changes.
Visibility enables you to do the most with what you have. You can recover capital tied up in consigned inventory and put it to use in different ways. You might funnel it into manufacturing new product or putting on more sales rep training. Or, you’d have capital freed up to do more surgeon training courses or visitations. You can probably think of a half-dozen ways to put working capital recovered from inventory to good use right now—with results that have real financial implications.
That kind of operational performance transformation is exactly what ImplantBase offers. It’s the industry-leading, all-in-one cloud-based software platform that delivers powerful, real-time control over your sales, inventory, and supply chain.
And powerful real-time visibility is just one benefit that has serious financial implications. With ImplantBase, you can streamline sales operations by scaling with software, not headcount. With better visibility and the automation of unwieldy, time-consuming processes, you have the means to contend with the kind of endemic chaos that can inflate your operations overhead. And, depending on your size, you can defer the purchase of a costly ERP solution until you reach $100 million in revenue. In fact, multiple mid-sized ImplantBase clients run their entire businesses on our platform integrated with their QuickBooks system.
Last but not least, every function—field reps, sales ops, and finance—has access to the same single source of truth. You’ve already lived in a universe where everyone is working from a different data set. A single source of truth is revolutionary from everyone’s vantage point.
The realization of these benefits, though, is only possible when you choose a solution that actually fits your company, rather than having to turn your business model upside down to accommodate a solution. That means seeking a solution with flexible and configurable business processes combined with true interoperability—the ability to integrate with any system from QuickBooks to CRM to ERP. Finally, everything hinges on adoption, because if your sales reps won’t use it, it’s not really a solution.
We get the plight of the CFO. That’s why ImplantBase offers flexibility, interoperability, and has a 97% rep adoption rate. With it, you’ll have the ability to channel your assets more effectively toward such key strategic priorities as capturing market share and producing and distributing product most effectively.
Interested in learning more about our solution from the CFO’s point of view? Visit our Solutions page.