Top 10 mistakes in dealing with GPOs, IDNs, and RPCs
- Not understanding the differences between GPOs (Group Purchasing Organizations), IDNs (Integrated Delivery Networks), and RPCs (Regional Purchasing Collaboratives) and their business models
- Treating each GPO, IDN, and RPC the same (“when you’ve seen one, you’ve seen one”)
- Viewing the GPO as the customer/end user (GPOs don’t buy anything; but they are a key component in influencing behavior at some customer levels)
- Not setting specific goals/expectations during an awarded contract cycle and communicating regularly (it’s critical to manage the relationship at both a high level and the field level with their members)
- Assuming they have the time and resources to sell your product (the phone will not start ringing once a contract is announced; every major GPO manages over 1000 contracts)
- Relying solely on discounts and spiffs to drive business (face to face relationship selling is still critical to move share but focus your efforts on the key targets, the survivors of healthcare reform)
- Assuming the distributor will sell/service your GPO contracted products (get in line; the last thing a distributor needs is to stock more products on their shelves)
- Assume you will get all the business when awarded a contract or lose all the business when you lose (good sales people will identify compliant members; don’t assume a member is loyal to a corporate contract. More than ever, saving $$$ is crucial to survival; facility needs may trump a GPO relationship)
- Assuming your pricing will be kept confidential (pricing transparency is inevitable; be careful when providing one group or system better pricing than another)
- Decisions by GPOs with thousands of hospitals and tens of thousands of other are usually decided by a handful of committee members with a strong affiliation (partner, shareholder, affiliate system or IDN) who want to influence the ultimate decision.
Do you know who these people are???
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