Our commercial director, Ben Dawson, explains why accelerating recovery for patients requires only the best from its loyal supplier network.
Supplier management is a misnomer. No supplier manager’s job involves, or should involve, managing only their supplier. It is a role which requires as much the management of one’s own organisation and its expectations as it does the suppliers to truly get the best out of a mutually beneficial business relationship.
At HCML our supplier management is ethical and fair. Our aim is to build honest, mutually beneficial relationships with our suppliers so as to achieve our core goals of accelerating recovery and delighting our customers.
We believe in paying our suppliers a fair price and paying them when we say that we will. That does not mean paying over the odds for treatment nor being fooled that all that glitters is gold, like being fooled that a nice waiting room with a free coffee equates to clinically excellent treatment worth three times the market rate.
Nor does it mean squeezing every penny out of suppliers. The short-term gain of an extra few pounds here and there results in clinics closing and a reduction in the quality of treatment which, in the long run, results in longer rehabilitation and claim lifecycles to the patient’s detriment.
Our approach is to ensure that the best clinics are charging us market rates in their area so that they can get the most referrals they can. The result for us is better treatment at prices that benefits both us and our suppliers.
HCML is investing in technology to make the process of working with us as easy and efficient as possible and working with our suppliers as we develop that technology. In an environment where clinics are increasing their “walk-in” client base, the attraction of intermediaries demanding lower prices for more work (in the shape of additional reporting required of clinics to satisfy claims) is declining rapidly.
Those companies that continue to push down on their suppliers will find themselves without any clinics to refer to or a network of clinics delivering minimal to no treatment as part of a questionable, tick-box “rehab” approach.
Our supplier on-boarding process is not easy, and we have clinics that apply to join our Innotrex treatment network who drop out due to our demands but the result is a network of clinics that we can be sure are clinically excellent, have the level of governance needed and are commercially astute.
We want to support our clinics in delivering the best possible treatment to their patients, whether those patients were referred to them by HCML or if they walked in the door off the street, in order to build upon the Innotrex reputation for complaint-free customer service and excellence.