In the retail pharmacy business, workflow efficiency is essential. Day-to-day operations can impact everything from a retail pharmacy’s bottom line to patient satisfaction, patient safety, and quality performance.
“Today, pharmacies have to be at the top of their game,” explains Ryan Summers, PharmD, owner of Summers Pharmacy. “Patients don’t just compare pharmacies to other pharmacies. They compare us to non-pharmacy organizations that have a high level of customer satisfaction.”
In other words, in a highly competitive industry, retail pharmacies must find ways to stand out in the crowd or risk falling short, missing opportunities, and losing business to their local counterparts. That said, if you’re struggling to optimize your retail pharmacy workflows, you’re not alone—and fortunately, there are steps you can take to optimize your operations and improve your retail pharmacy’s efficiency:
Retail Pharmacy Workflow: 4 Ways to Optimize Your Operations
Evaluate Existing Processes
Before you can optimize your retail pharmacy workflow, you need to know what’s not working. Pinpointing the problems and inefficiencies in your current processes will help determine where you can improve. To evaluate your existing processes, audit your retail pharmacy workflow and answer a few important questions:
- How many steps are required to fill a prescription?
- What keeps pharmacy staff from working efficiently?
- Is your pharmacy losing money due to your workflow?
- Do customers have to wait a long time for their prescriptions?
Automate Manual Workflows
Automation is the key to streamlining retail pharmacy workflows. Pharmacies today—like businesses in every other industry—turn to modern technology to automate manual, time-intensive workflows. Doing so not only saves time and resources, but also reduces the risk of dispensing errors, billing challenges, and more.
Automating inefficient tasks can also reduce overhead and the need to bring on more full-time employees to expand your services and scale your pharmacy. Automated packaging and dispensing is just one example of how pharmacy automation technology can increase your productivity and the number of prescriptions filled.
Provide Comprehensive Training
Training and education are essential to optimize your retail pharmacy workflow. Make it a point to train each individual—pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and other staff members—both in their role and within the entire workflow.
It’s also beneficial to cross-train technicians in multiple areas of the pharmacy so that staff can easily step in when needed to avoid stalling processes.
Optimize Interventions with AI
You can optimize your retail pharmacy workflow by using artificial intelligence (AI) to deploy more efficient, cost-effective interventions. AI-powered patient interventions can be personalized to each individual, improving overall effectiveness and reducing costs. Rather than retail pharmacies taking a shot in the dark or following the same rules-based formula for each person, AI determines:
- Which high-risk patients have the greatest likelihood of being influenced.
- The best intervention channel to engage and influence each individual.
- Optimal messaging content, timing, and frequency to encourage change.
Plus, thanks to machine learning, AI gets smarter as it goes—meaning you can continually optimize your retail pharmacy workflow. This will ensure more successful patient interventions, improve medication adherence, and close gaps in care as a result.
Using Artificial Intelligence to Transform Patient Interventions
AllazoHealth combines the power of AI, predictive analytics, and machine learning to improve patient outcomes and boost quality performance. If you’re on the hunt for ways to optimize and enhance your retail pharmacy operations, artificial intelligence—or “smart data”—may be an ideal solution to reimagine your patient engagement programs.
Want to learn more about using AI to optimize retail pharmacy interventions? Find out how AllazoHealth’s AI targeting transformed medication adherence at Walgreens.