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Australian Journal of Pharmacy : October 2006
1. Merchandising and space management—planning and control: • Increasing income. • Reducing buying costs. • Improving returns space, stock and staff costs. • Enhancing the customer offer. The data is available from any reason- able pharmacy POS retail management system. That’s why owners must begin treating POS as important and delegate the management role to a trained retail manager. Invest in this process because it will be returned many times over. Several years ago I attended a retail conference in London. One of the speak- ers who was from Boots told us that a third of the company’s net profit resulted directly from the effective utilisation of data. How much would that mean to both your pharmacy’s profits and its market selling value? With the Federal Govern- ment planning to impose changes to PBS remuneration, for the majority of phar- macies, data use could mean the differ- ence between viability and going broke. 2. Transaction methods—replacing labour with technology Includes rostering systems, scanning, wireless connectivity and so on. 3. Information retrieval and sharing. EDI connectivity permits data to be shared with warehouse and manufactur- ers to replenish automatically. Supermar- kets have got this down to a fine art, but community pharmacy is light years away. Financial reporting Financial reporting is another area of pharmacy management that is woefully conducted. There’s a lot in what I have discussed and I plan to expand in more detail next month. It’s critical to the viability of phar- macies that owners embrace meaningful change to improve efficiencies, reduce costs and improve the retail offer. But, it won’t happen unless owners deem it important. So when next thinking about systems, makr the first four-letter word that comes to mind be ‘data’. Retail Trends: (Source: Australian Centre For Retail Studies—Retail Trends June 2006) Retail Sales: July 2006 versus July 2005: Total retail sales—Australia (all retailers) Pharmaceutical, cosmetic and toiletry 6.2% (early winter sales 9.8% (retail sales recover) Reflect consumers spending tax cuts Growth expected to soften due to interest rates and petrol. ¦