Build a team of supplier partners

Dec 21, 2016 by Edward L. Blach, DVM, MS, MBA

Every practice has a short list of primary supplier needs to optimize the practice.  They may not have formalized their list by writing it down and prioritizing suppliers, but they have their list of preferred suppliers.  What product categories and service suppliers belong on that list?  Consider this list:

  • Antibiotics and general pharmaceuticals
  • Biologicals (vaccines)
  • Parasiticides
  • Pain management
  • Food
  • General distributor
  • Imaging 
  • Laboratory
  • Equipment supplier(s)
  • Payroll and HR services
  • Patient financing and Accounts Receivable

There are others as well, but most of the frequent and daily needs are listed here.  What needs are on your list?  Develop your list of strategic suppliers, and reach out to them to express how you view their importance to your practice.  Develop a strategic relationship that serves the interests of both companies.

This plan will help you to manage your two biggest cost areas:  labor and cost of professional services.  Typically, most practices have at least 60% of revenue tied up in these two categories.   Manage them well.

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