The Wilkinson Healthcare Story

Every day thousands of people across the UK rely on the services provided by Wilkinson Healthcare. The company has a long heritage in supplying stoma, continence and wound care products to UK Dispensing Alliance Contractors and the 9,500 pharmacies within the UK pharmacy network.

Recently, the company set up an online store to service the needs of incontinence patients, harnessing the experience and knowledge gained in the health arena to benefit individual consumers. The website was set up with one clear aim; to support patients through the purchasing and decision-making process, ensuring they have the right products for their needs.

Since inception, Wilkinson Healthcare has helped people to understand more about the largely taboo subject of stoma and incontinence care. Through working with a range of medical bodies, charities and organisations, Wilkinson Healthcare has remained at the forefront of supplying the latest innovation in medical device and wound care products, equipping patients to lead positive lives.

Business Requirements

Wilkinson Healthcare Ltd was established as an independent company in 2014, having for many years been a trading division of a large pharmaceutical organisation.

Previously, all central business operations such as finance, HR and payroll, along with the IT systems that supported these functions, were provided by the parent company.

Wilkinson Healthcare was provided with a 12-month window in which to set up and support its own systems. Unencumbered by legacy systems, the company sought a solution that could support the business today and provide a stable platform for future growth.

...Microsoft Dynamics NAV offered the best level of flexibility and functionality at the right price point.

The Solution

Flexibility was vital, so having assessed a range of enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions across a variety of budgets; Wilkinson Healthcare decided that Microsoft Dynamics NAV offered the best level of flexibility and functionality at the right price point.  Once decided on the solution, the company needed to find the ideal technology provider to work with.

Russ Melrose, Interim MD and IT Director at Wilkinson Healthcare takes up the story: ‘We met with 3 partners and each of them had the technical competency to implement the solution. The difference with The NAV People was their approach; they wanted to understand how we worked so they could augment the solution to our needs rather than the other way around. It was a refreshing difference.'

Delivering to tight timescales

With just a 6-month window in which to test and launch a new solution across the whole company, there was no time for dawdling! The NAV People set to work straight away on tailoring the solution to the company’s requirements during the implementation process. They worked extensively with the Wilkinson IT team to assist them in develop their in-house knowledge of Dynamics NAV and helped set up training for new users across the company. Today, Dynamics NAV underpins all core business functions at Wilkinson Healthcare including purchasing, payroll, HR, warehouse and finance functions.

Russ explains: ‘To have achieved a full ERP implementation within 6 months, with a small in-house team that had no previous technical expertise in Dynamics NAV was a massive undertaking.  However, The NAV People didn’t flinch at the challenge, they augmented the solution during the implementation process ensuring the project was delivered on time, on budget and with minimum disruption.’

Just as prescribed!

Wilkinson Healthcare holds approximately 4,500 lines of stock at any one time and has 2 distinct channels to market. Firstly, as a wholesaler of stoma, continence and wound care products, to the UK Dispensing Alliance Contractors (DACs) and to 9,500 pharmacies within the UK pharmacy network.

The company receives between 500 and 800 orders daily from the DACs and from a large medical wholesaler who processes the pharmacy orders. The prescription line items are sent to Wilkinson Healthcare via an interface developed by The NAV People, which integrates the pharmacy wholesalers system with Dynamics NAV. As soon as the warehouse team pick and pack the items, a notification is sent via the system confirming the order fulfilment.

Accurate visibility of stock is vital; Dynamics NAV is used to keep track of stock levels and interfaces with the wholesaler’s system to provide real-time notifications every 15 minutes.

The second channel to market is the newly launched web shop that provides a direct and discrete facility to service the needs of incontinence patients. The web shop delivers fully integrated e-commerce solutions for Microsoft Dynamics, The NAV People installed the SANA ecommerce solution into Dynamics NAV providing a seamless exchange of existing business information to the web shop.

Russ explains: ‘By developing an interface into the pharmacy order system and integrating the web shop into Dynamics NAV we have created a single repository of information that has streamlined our operations. This has resulted in significant headcount savings by eliminating the need for manual order entry.’

Today, Dynamics NAV underpins all core business functions at Wilkinson Healthcare including purchasing, payroll, HR, warehouse and finance functions.

nHancement The NAV People Way!

When Wilkinson Healthcare developed their new web shop, they wanted a comprehensive search functionality that enabled people to find the product they needed, in whatever manner they needed it.  The nHanced workflow module has enabled the IT team at Wilkinson Healthcare to do just that by enriching the data and augmenting the search facility.

Russ comments: ‘The nHanced workflow module has given us the ultimate functionality and flexibility to create dashboards that show metrics important to our business, not what a template report thinks would be important. We are able to make changes, without the services of a developer, putting us in the driving seat of our IT business environment.’

Business Benefits

Business Clarity: Dynamics NAV has radically improved the level of visibility across the company, delivering real-time data on number of orders, stock levels and invoicing.

Process efficiency: Reduced headcount costs by eliminating the need for manual order entry of approximately 600 orders daily by integrating Dynamics NAV with wholesalers ordering system via an interface.

Future proofed: Dynamics NAV has underpinned the operations of the organisation and provided a flexible and scalable platform giving the company a progression path to implement new features as its operations grow.

...The NAV People didn’t flinch at the challenge, they augmented the solution during the implementation process ensuring the project was delivered on time, on budget & with minimum disruption.

Russ concludes: ‘The NAV People took the time to understand our requirements and delivered the solution not only within budget but also in the tightest of timescales. We are a small company with a high order throughput; the solution underpins our business and enables us to be incredibly efficient. The Dynamics NAV solution has put us on the path to optimisation, enabling us to further improve our business processes and providing the functionality in which to do this ourselves.’

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