Every small business owner needs certain tools to help make informed business decisions.
Though some of these resources may seem obvious, you’d be surprised at how often you forget their importance. But by remembering to use these tools, you can continue to improve your independent community pharmacy business.
1. Accounting system
With margins for independent pharmacies growing tighter, updating your accounting is key to managing your money correctly and monitoring your pharmacy’s performance.
If you want your accountant to be able to do his job right, you need to have a suitable accounting system in place.
For example, simply looking at your bank account as your accounting system can be misleading, as you’re only seeing the cash that’s coming in and going out. Instead, look at your cash flow along with your assets and liabilities, so that you—and your accountant—can understand what’s really going on with your business.
How are your time management skills?
With everything on your plate, it’s easy to forget to complete certain tasks or spend too much time working on one aspect of your business.
A simple calendar can be an effective solution.
Use a digital calendar to allot a certain amount of time per task and to send you an alert when it’s time to move on. And, with a digital calendar, you can schedule important recurring tasks, such as doing payroll or reordering supplies.
3. Marketing/design tools
You don’t have to be a marketing expert or a graphic designer to create marketing materials for your pharmacy business. (Although we do recommend using a marketing expert for your pharmacy if you have the resources.)
While it’s great to be able to hire an outside company to design these materials for you, there’s a good chance that’s not in your budget.
There are plenty of easy-to-use design tools that can help you create graphics for flyers or banners without breaking the bank, such as Canva. Additionally, you can purchase stock photos from websites, such as iStock or Shutterstock, to use on your website or with your social media posts.
Sleep is a valuable tool that many independent community pharmacy owners tend to neglect.
Believe it or not, a lack of sleep can severely affect your job performance. When you’re tired, your pharmacy simply won’t run as well.
If you’ve worked late the night before, allow yourself to sleep in a little longer in the morning. Or, set an alarm on your phone to remind you when it’s time to step away from work and get some sleep.
You’ll get more done—and do a better job—when you’ve had enough rest.
5. Updated business plan
When’s the last time you updated your business plan?
Your business plan should be an ongoing process that includes fundamental strategies, such as managing cash flow, setting expectations and planning your financial needs.
And, you should update your plan regularly throughout the year to gauge whether you’re on track or if you need to make adjustments.
For example, if you plan to open a new pharmacy location, you’ll need to update your business plan to factor the added expenses into your fixed costs and spending.
Check out these five keys to a successful independent community pharmacy business.