Many physicians are tracking their clinic’s inventory on paper or in their heads, making a mental note to reorder and trying to remember themselves what they actually have in stock.
If you use EHR at your practice, you already have an efficient way to track inventory without using these inefficient methods. You can begin tracking your inventory electronically and your clinic may see several important benefits as a result.
Tracking inventory effectively is important. If you skip inventory at your practice, you may start losing product, or missing out on opportunities to keep items in stock. Learn more about electronic inventory and begin realizing benefits for your clinic.
Inventory tracking benefits
By recording what you have in stock, you can help prevent theft, misplaced product and other inventory problems. Losing track of what you have in inventory can interfere with your sales processes and may create problems for your practice, making it more difficult to maintain the right products, know what you actually have and file reports and taxes.
Using your tracking system can help you stay ahead of changes, too. If supplements are getting ready to expire, for instance, you need to record that information and be prepared to respond by discarding expired product and obtaining the replacement products you need. This reduces waste at your clinic, too. You can reorder quickly if you know when you are low on product or need something else in stock.
Your accountant may appreciate it if you use a more accurate inventory system, too, because it will probably be easier for them to file taxes, claim deductions and track applicable sales tax collection.
You can also begin gathering meaningful inventory data more easily. This can help you know exactly how often you are using specific product lines and how popular items such as books, supplements and at-home care products are at your clinic. That way, you also know which vendors are selling well and which products to reduce or eliminate from your sales.
Many EHR systems include inventory tracking systems. From your EHR, you can easily have barcoded items scanned out and automatically removed from your in-stock list. You may also be able to reorder items quickly and generate reports based on sales and revenue figures. This way, you can determine if your sales are actually generating a profit, covering costs and allowing you to continue selling efficiently.
With some software systems, you can also access profit projection reports. This can help you come up with estimates of how much the product you already have in stock would sell for at full price. This can be helpful as you try to anticipate future sales.
Start tracking your chiropractic inventory
If you are already using an EHR system, you can ask your vendor for help if you are not sure how to use the inventory tracking system inside your software. Many vendors offer trainings, forums, and help guides online if you have questions or need help getting started with your system.
Practices that are still shopping around for an EHR system should ask prospective vendors how well their software handles inventory tracking. If you can use your EHR, it may save you money on separate inventory software and it can also help you reduce your costs and sell more efficiently and effectively.
Practices that are ready to start with inventory tracking should be patient—sometimes it can take a while to learn how to consistently use inventory tracking software. You may need to train your employees on the system if they are not familiar with it yet, too.
1. Dudek, L. “Tracking, Analyzing and Managing Your Practice’s Inventory.” Patient Now Blog. http://www.patientnow.com/tracking-analyzing-managing-practices-inventory/. Published: November 2014. Accessed: September 201