In your community pharmacy, you expect your software system to do a number of things: accurately record information, provide useful insights, and give you the necessary tools to stay on top of patient care. Even with all of the capabilities your software gives you, though, you still expect it to fit in your budget.
It’s no surprise that finances are a major deciding factor for pharmacists looking to switch to a new system 一 and it’s one that you should take note of, too. Everyone is looking to save money, especially community pharmacists trying to optimize their local business, and your software system is just one area where you can save big. By asking the right questions, getting the right information, and taking the right steps forward, you can pick a software system that gives you everything you need, without breaking the bank.
Keep in mind, though, that not all pharmacy software systems are created equal 一 and their price tags reflect that. When you start your search, aim to find a vendor that checks off all of your boxes but gives you the best price possible. Then, save up your funds, and when the time is right, take the plunge to purchase your next software system.
5 Key Steps to Savings
- Get multiple quotes 一 Whether you are making a quick trip to the grocery store or getting the latest gadget on the market, you compare the prices of different products. The same principle should apply when you are shopping for a new pharmacy software system. Rather than picking the first available system you find, contact different vendors and ask about getting a quote from each of them. Quotes are never a one-size-fits-all approach: they are dependent on the size of your pharmacy, the services you offer, and the tools you need. Because pricing can vary so widely, it is important to start your search early and get quotes from as many vendors as you can.
- Ask about integrations 一 Most software systems integrate with other products and services that can give you even more capabilities. Integrations can range from automation to inventory to insurance claims. Oftentimes, integrations come at a fee 一 but some vendors offer complementary integrations or integrations at a lower rate, which can save you money. When you are comparing your options, then, it is important to find out which integrations your vendor offers and how they are priced. Generally speaking, don’t just look at the sticker price of a pharmacy software system but consider the integration fees as well. This will help you get a more accurate picture of how much you will end up paying.
- Watch a demo 一 Demos are designed to let you see a software system in action and determine if it will be a good fit for your pharmacy. In addition to giving you more information, demos provide you with the chance to talk about finances with a vendor representative. During your demo process, you can ask your most pressing payment questions 一 including how software systems are priced, what payment plan options are available, etc. Usually, your sales representative will schedule a follow-up meeting after the demo to get more personalized pricing options. This can be a great place to start out and get basic financial information.
- Ask about discounts and promotions 一 It is possible that a vendor may offer special discounts or seasonal promotions when you make your purchase. You won’t know if you don’t ask, though 一 so don’t be afraid to open up the conversation to get the best possible price for you. A good vendor wants you to feel confident about your purchase, and they will be willing to work with you to make it happen.
- See your software as an investment 一 At the end of the day, your pharmacy software system will be a major purchase. Some vendors may offer lower prices and better promotions, but at the end of the day, you will still have to make the decision and commit to the purchase. A software system isn’t just another bill that your pharmacy has to foot, however. Rather, it is an investment for the future of your business. It is the most important tool in your practice, keeping all of your operations afloat 一 so it is one that you should be willing to spend the extra money on to get a good one. The time and effort that you will save with a quality system make it worth the initial cost, and by saving in these areas, you can treat more patients with quality care and earn more money through your enhanced services.
Save More, Do More
Just like any other piece of equipment in your pharmacy, your software system will come with both initial and ongoing costs. By taking the right steps, though, you can find a quality vendor, pick a robust system, and minimize your out-of-pocket expenses in the long run. When it comes to shopping for a new software system, you can save money without skipping out on quality. When you save more, you can do more 一 leading to better outcomes all around.