How Design Helps Inventory Management
The healthcare and dental industry use specialized equipment, materials and medications to serve patients. In order to store and organize medical supplies, efficient inventory management practices and good design are crucial.
If inventory isn’t tracked and stored properly, it doesn’t only adversely impact organizational operations, causing staff to spend too much searching for inventory.
It could also risk lives as certain items or supplies aren’t accessible at the point of need or have expired products. When clinics constantly deal with rising costs, increased patient demands and under staffing, inventory management should be considered mission critical.
Inventory Management is investment protection
Medical and dental instruments often cost upwards of $100K. That cost doesn’t count all the other items used in the course of a busy workday. Surgical instruments aren’t replaced easily due to high costs or limited availability.
So, why wouldn’t medical facilities effectively track these items? The large investment should be reason enough. An effective inventory management system, along with good design not only allows a medical or dental facility to track the use and availability of these instruments, it also reduces the chances of loss and theft.
Further, a medical organization can more efficiently manage rotation of the instruments between surgery, sterilization and storage.
Using Inventory Management software to reduce inventory wastage
Automation enables healthcare providers to reduce inventory wastage. They can do this in several ways:
- a visible stock in a well-designed practice is a locatable stock – reducing the amount of time spent hunting down items. Item tracking enables ease of location and retrieval of stock items
- gaining a better understanding of usage to make more informed restocks based on actual need
- needs-based restocks result in smaller orders and reduced expenditure
- accurate restocks prevent the stockouts which require expensive last-minute orders and also prevent surplus stock which has a higher risk of expiring on the shelf.
- seeing when stock is nearing expiry and prioritizing this for soonest use
- reducing wasted supply chain labour from both materials management and medical staff – by cutting out the need to undertake manual counts or expiry checks on all items in automated storage units
What about design when it comes to Inventory management?
It’s much easier to manage something when you can see it. Dental and medical supplies kept behind solid doors, inside drawers, cabinets and closets make it difficult to manage inventory. It is also impossible to manage inventory inside a box.
The first step in creating a timesaving inventory system is making it visual. The solution is to organize everything into something you can see all the time.
Visually seeing supplies will cut time, and cut intensive labour costs as your restocking is managed in an easier way. You can also take advantage of buying opportunities and maximize ordering when space is available and better manage your cash flow.
“Effective inventory management has a direct effect on your bottom line.” Jennifer Brown, Decca Design Inc.
What is the optimal design for your practice?
One that creates the best experience for your patients and clinicians by promoting a comfortable, efficient, and safe working environment.
Medical and Dental office design is about much more than just aesthetics: improvements in your office layout can streamline your patient’s visit and improve inventory management and sterilization procedures. Integrated technology can expand treatment options and reduce setup time, turning a patient’s visit into a seamless process.
With Decca Design Inc. we can develop a design unique to the personality of your practice, one that reflects quality and inspires confidence while improving your patients and clinicians experience. Design is an investment that, when done right, yields a significant return of time, money and quality of life. We refer to this as Return on Design Investment or RODI.
Contact us today so we can discuss your current challenges, needs and desires.
We appreciate hearing your thoughts and “What’s on your Design Mind”?