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Chief Product Officer

6 Reasons It’s Critical for Your Supply Chain Platform

4 Minute Read – Healthcare supply chain management (SCM) is extremely complex. At Syft®, we strive to make it easier for you in a variety of ways. One is by focusing on augmenting and enhancing your ERP, rather than disrupting it.

While many inventory management providers implement technology that works separately from your ERP—creating a duplicate copy of data and periodically synching it with your ERP—we view your ERP as your single source of truth. That’s why we built the Syft Synergy platform to seamlessly integrate with your hospital’s ERP. This ensures that every inventory management task or transaction completed in Syft is automatically reflected in real-time in both systems.

Extending the Value of Your ERP with Syft Synergy

Hospital ERPs are a critical component of managing internal processes and transactions, including many supply chain-related tasks. But hospitals can achieve even greater value from their ERP by integrating it with Syft Synergy, a robust supply chain management platform. Syft Synergy improves mobility—leading to greater productivity and accuracy—and layers in advanced features, efficiency reports, and analytics and dashboards that yield real-time data that further optimizes the supply chain and identifies supply-related cost savings and revenue-generation opportunities.

6 ways this approach benefits hospitals and patients

  • More accurate inventory data. Most supply chain management systems work separately from the ERP, duplicating the data, modifying it, and periodically resynching it. As a result, the data in both systems is not always accurate and up-to-date. That’s not the case with the Syft Synergy platform, since it seamlessly integrates with your ERP, supports real-time ERP updates, and does not require duplicate ERP data sets. The ERP data is always up to date with respect to SCM rules and supply quantity on hand.
  • Optimal enterprise-wide management. Syft’s ability to seamlessly integrate with real-time transactions also improves inventory management across the enterprise and within key departments. For example, when staff members complete inventory transactions with Syft’s handheld devices (such as PAR replenishments, purchase order receipts, and picking feedback), that information is captured and updated in the ERP in real-time. As a result, the hospital experiences fewer inventory inaccuracies, reducing the risk of replenishment timing problems and stock-out situations.
  • Higher quality patient care. The seamless integration and real-time transactions provided by Syft also enhance patient care. The improved accuracy between the two systems ensures that replenishment rules and quantity on hand values are accurate so that replenishment orders are always triggered at the appropriate time. This means hospitals experience fewer supply shortages and stockouts that could impact patients.
  • Streamlined processes for IT and supply chain teams. Seamless integration with the ERP also simplifies processes for hospitals’ internal IT staff members. Since fewer data discrepancies and errors occur, the IT and supply chain teams spend less time confirming data integrity and resolving problems.
  • Enhanced margins and revenue. Syft’s integrated approach also improves margins and revenue for hospitals. With fewer supply shortages and stockouts, there are fewer postponed OR procedures. And, since supply chain data is more accurate overall, hospitals can make more informed, revenue-enhancing purchasing decisions. Hospitals can also use stronger data to optimize physician preference items and implement strategies to reduce supply waste.
  • Higher patient satisfaction. As noted, seamless integration between the Syft Synergy platform and the ERP helps ensure the hospital experiences fewer inventory inaccuracies, which reduces the risk of replenishment timing problems and stock-out situations. This in turn, leads to fewer delayed procedure situations that contribute to poorer patient satisfaction. With patient satisfaction playing a growing role in value-based reimbursement as well as hospital reputation, hospitals must work to ensure fewer stockouts and shortages occur.

Preserving your ERP as the source of truth is a must, and hospitals should select a supply chain management solution and vendor that supports that strategy. Seamless real-time integration with the supply chain management system eliminates the risk of inaccurate and outdated data, while enhancing patient care and streamlining processes for staff members and IT teams. More accurate data and insights enabled by seamless integration also help hospitals maximize the margin-enhancing benefits associated with supply chain optimization, which can reach up to $12.1 million per hospital annually.

Contact us to learn more about how we maintain the integrity of your source of truth, and how this approach is benefitting hospitals across the country.

Steve Herz Chief Product Officer

Steve Herz is a proven product leader focused on driving product vision, strategy and roadmap for mutual client, company value and growth. Steve focuses on collaboration between customer and company and internal execution teams to deliver successful strategic, operational, and roadmap results. Steve comes to Syft from SOC Telemed where, as VP of Product, he led strategy, roadmap, and execution of specialty telemedicine clinical and technology services delivery to over 450 health systems and hospitals. Prior to his work with SOC Telemed, Mr. Herz held multiple leadership positions with Quest Diagnostics where he led strategic planning and execution of Quest’s health IT products division and delivery of services to hospitals, health systems, payers and ambulatory providers. Additionally, Mr. Herz launched and lead the growth of Exostar’s Healthcare cyber security and identity management government and private sector divisions. Mr. Herz holds a BS in Engineering from the University of Connecticut and a MS in Engineering from the University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign.
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By , Chief Marketing Officer

4 Minute Read – Supplies follow a long pathway through the hospital, from the warehouse to the clinical care team. As a critical end user, nurses have unique visibility into supply chain inefficiencies and problems. This is one of many reasons it’s so critical for hospital leaders to incorporate nurses’ input before embarking on a supply chain improvement initiative. Nurses can reveal key supply chain vulnerabilities and weaknesses that other hospital staff members don’t see.

During a recent panel discussion with the American Hospital Association, Deena Carney, RN, BSN, MHA, CNOR, Director of Surgical Services at Good Samaritan Medical Center; Ariam Yitbarek, MS, BSN, RN, NEA-BC, Vice President of Nursing Operations at MedStar Washington Hospital Center; and Lee Smith, RNFA, BSN, MBA, Vice President of Clinical Solutions at Syft, discussed how hospitals can create a more nurse-centric supply chain. One of the top solutions our panelists all agreed on? Obtaining nurse input and buy-in for supply chain improvement initiatives.

Here are a few of the biggest takeaways from their conversation.

Involve nurses in supply chain decision-making

Well-before embarking on a supply chain improvement initiative, hospitals should seek out input from frontline nurses and nurse leaders. This will help ensure hospital leaders better understand how changes to supply chain processes can complement and enhance nurses’ workflows, rather than hinder them.

“Including nurses early in the decision-making process is critical in any supply chain project, but particularly useful when implementing new technology or making technology enhancements,” said Lee. “Hospitals should have nurses involved in RFP planning committees, implementation committees, training committees, and ongoing improvement and quality assurance committees.”

At MedStar Washington Hospital Center, which is in the midst of a supply chain optimization initiative, Ariam said the process has benefited greatly from a steering committee of nurses. “This group has participated in every decision point, from how to categorize supplies to what the appropriate terminology for a supply should be in the documentation system,” she explained. “We also have unit champions that go to their units, gather feedback, and share it with the steering group.”

Communicate early and often to nurses

Nurse leaders, supply chain leaders, and hospital leaders should communicate openly with the nursing team about any upcoming supply chain workflow and documentation changes. They should also explain the reasons behind the changes, and share how the changes will benefit nurses and patient care.

This will give nurses insight and time to prepare for what’s coming, and it will make them feel heard—both of which will lead to more nurse buy-in with the project, said Ariam. “Engaging nurses and communicating with them about the plan is extremely important. We regularly inform our staff and communicate about the plan, and started doing this months in advance of making changes.”

Survey nurses on their supply chain challenges and needs

As noted, nurses have a unique vantage point when it comes to identifying supply chain problems. Prior to making supply chain changes, and then on an ongoing basis, hospitals should periodically survey both their frontline nurses and their nursing leaders about supply chain processes.

These surveys can help hospital and supply chain leaders learn:

Nurses will appreciate the chance to weigh in by participating in the survey, and hospital leaders will benefit from uncovering hidden supply chain problems.

Identify unit champions to ensure continuous improvement

Once your hospital has completed a supply chain improvement initiative, it’s important to implement safeguards to ensure problems and inefficiencies for nurses are quickly identified on an ongoing basis. While annual surveys of nurses can help, hospitals should also form a council of frontline nurses and nurse leaders that regularly shares feedback with hospital leaders and supply chain leaders.

“The supply chain is not a one-discipline responsibility—it applies to every discipline,” Ariam said. “It touches clinicians, supply teams, vendors, and many others. Optimizing the supply chain requires a true partnership and collaborative effort.”

  1. 1. Attendee poll during AHA Webinar: The Nurse’s Take: How to Improve Hospital Supply Chain Management

Whitney St. Pierre Chief Marketing Officer

Whitney St. Pierre has nearly 20 years’ experience fulfilling various marketing leadership roles in the technology industry. In her current role as Chief Marketing Officer, Whitney has oversight of all aspects of marketing including strategy, branding, product marketing, sales enablement, and communications to name a few.

Prior to joining Syft, Whitney was the Director of Marketing for Extension Healthcare. During her 8 years there, she was instrumental in a major rebranding initiative that helped to propel the company’s growth. Having become the leader in the clinical communication and collaboration market, Extension Healthcare was acquired by Vocera Communications in 2016.

Whitney earned a BS from Auburn University in 2001 with a concentration on business and marketing. She now lives in Nashville, TN with her husband and two children and is an accomplished artist.

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