Where it all began
As most pharmacy owners will know all too well, running a delivery service raises many issues on a day-to-day basis.
Identifying the problem
I lacked vital information on the service we provided. I did not know how many [deliveries] we did daily, weekly, and monthly. The delivery driver required more hours, but I had no way of seeing how well the delivery system worked or could be improved. There seemed to be a communication problem between the pharmacy staff and the delivery service. When my driver said he was going on holiday for a month I needed a system in place that would ensure that our delivery service did not suffer. We had reached a stage where we required a second van for the delivery. During the month he was on holiday and monitoring the two drivers I realised how inefficient our delivery service was, such as delivering to far-reach areas on consecutive days.
I was so pleased with the solution that I decided to make it available to other pharmacies
Finding the solution
After clearly identifying the issues I decided to have a mobile app developed to provide a complete solution. This was developed not as a business initiative but to resolve issues that I had with the delivery service we provided.
We were able to reshuffle our deliveries and not only have we been able to avoid the second van, but [have] been able to reduce the delivery time by an hour every day. This has resulted in significant savings, even when factoring in the cost of development and a mobile phone contract for my driver.
I was also able to get rid of all paperwork and place a computer screen on the wall. This enabled the staff to follow the driver live through the day and hence resolve any delivery issues with patients that phoned up.
I was so pleased with the solution that I decided to make it available to other pharmacies. Since making that decision I have set up a company to provide the service - [PDM] - and developed the app further to include features requested by other pharmacies.
- Gary Davies, Borth Pharmacy