David Lawson heads up one of a new breed of procurement and supply chain organisations, SmartTogether. Large enough to commit volume to the market and secure great value, but small enough to deliver change locally. Read to find out why David works with AdviseInc.
There’s always interesting things happening at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Trust. It’s kept me here for 18 years. We currently host a procurement shared service called SmartTogether, which also supports Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust, Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children and South London and Maudsley NHS Trust. That’s five hospitals in total. And each one has its own health cost improvement plan.
AdviseInc’s price benchmarking tool helps support the pipeline of initiatives, and identify price variations between the different hospitals. The fact we support both Great Ormond Street and the London Evelina Children’s Hospital within Guy’s and St Thomas’ gives us a huge opportunity to look at product pricing across two large specialist paediatric hospitals within the same group. It also identifies any variants between other hospitals across the UK.
Why we wanted AdviseInc…
AdviseInc is well thought of in terms of being proactive, responsive and wanting to do the best for the procurement team – that’s a real positive. Before them, we used a different price benchmarking tool, but my team found it difficult to navigate so they didn’t use it as much. A big benefit to the AdviseInc tool is that it’s based on QlikView. It’s more intuitive to use, and the fact that it’s user-friendly means we can get real value from it. The sourcing team use it daily as a reference point for their CIP development, analysis and validation. It’s now part of business as usual.
Another limitation of the previous benchmarking tool is that it only looked at purchase order data. But there could be other transactions that weren’t covered by purchase order, so these weren’t referenced by the tool. What AdviseInc has offered is the Procurement Dashboard (PD) system, an additional tool with the advantage of looking at invoice data too. We’ve found this beneficial, as it gives you a complete overview of your non-pay spend.
Why insight is so important…
As well as being used as a tool for analysis, I also use it as a reporting tool for meetings involving internal committees or briefings with clinical teams to give an overview of their non-pay spend. From a presentation point of view, showing that the procurement team has an analytical tool that can provide this level of insight gives us credibility. So, it really helps me to present updates and opportunities.
When we were asked to support Great Ormond Street Hospital, we used the Price Benchmarking tool to provide some insight for them. It quickly identified that the Orthopaedic team were paying double the price for a specific spinal product compared to another Orthopaedic centre in a different part of the country… even though that centre was buying less of the product. We presented this to finance and the Medical Director to highlight the savings opportunity that could be made. We were then able to negotiate a much lower price with the supplier. That saved Great Ormond Street about £220,000 – essentially a 50% saving.
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