If you are in the business of selling imaging equipment to health care organizations, you likely haven't spent a great deal of time focused on your customer's picture archiving and communications system (PACS). And if you sell a PACS offering along with your modality sale, it may not enable your client to take full advantage of the potential to share images with remote radiologists and referring physicians or enable mobility in any location.
PACS is often an afterthought for modality vendors. However, we've found that those equipment resellers who can deliver thoughtful PACS solutions can stand out above their competition.
Your customers may not know what they are missing; many don't even know they need a PACS.
We've encountered modality resellers whose clients rely on the modality storage alone for their PACS. We've seen others who include a rudimentary PACS based upon old, inflexible technology. And we have seen others where their customer's PACS is at risk of catastrophic failure and the loss of important patient data.
Paying attention to this can both provide an added value to your customers as well as an additional profit opportunity for your business. But picking the wrong partner can do more harm than good to your customer relationships and can end up costing you more than the profits they suggest.
This is where you can shine! As a modality equipment reseller, you can make your clients happy and provide added value by offering a modern PACS solution, from a reputable vendor, together with your current line of products and services. Of course, you should plan ahead, identify the right partner and anticipate the needs of your customers in order to ensure the PACS solution provides you with the right benefits.
The way to really please your customers is not by solving the pain they already know about, but by solving the pain they still aren't aware of. But what else do you need to know to get started?
Find a PACS Partner
First, you should realize that in today's technologically connected world, your customers and prospects require a PACS solution that goes well beyond the physical hardware that has traditionally been sold as the PACS complement to your equipment. The PACS your customers want is one that is inexpensive but flexible. One that is nimble enough to adapt to their changing needs and does not risk quick technological obsolescence.
The solution you want to resell is likely one that has a sufficient margin to make it worthwhile for your sales team to offer but is priced low enough to keep the total price of your solution affordable.
You probably have some level of basic, working knowledge of how to store medical imaging studies, but the quickly evolving technology of today's PACS requires expert level guidance. That said, working with the right partner will enable you and your team to gain the knowledge and experience of people who know how to deliver the right customized technology for your clients.
More to the point, if you really want to go after PACS sales opportunities - with revenue growth potential for your business - partnering with a vendor who makes these solutions their business is the right choice.
But Not Just Any Partner
Since you don't want to provide your customers with a PACS that will dig them into a hole, the PACS you offer must be able to grow along with your customers, as they manage more and more imaging studies. With that in mind, not all PACS vendors are created equal, and not all of them will deliver a PACS that is trustworthy or up-to-date, from a technology standpoint.
At the end of the day, you want to work with a vendor who will make you look good and enable you to make a little extra margin.
Many modality sales people we have encountered complain that PACS vendors slow them down; including a PACS creates factors that they can't control, potentially adding a layer of confusion and thus protracting the length of their typical sales cycle.
If you do your due diligence, however, and select the right PACS vendor, the process should be painless with easy, responsive communication on both sides.
There are a few other considerations to keep in mind when picking a partner:
- The PACS vendor you select should not also sell modalities as a part of their business - you don't want to be competing against your vendor for sales.
- They should have an established and clear incentive program in place, so that your company (and your sales team) can benefit financially from delivering the PACS along with the equipment.
- They should also be willing to provide support and training during the sales, installation and onboarding processes for you and your customers.
- They should also be available to provide PACS support on an ongoing basis for your client if needed.
The bottom line is you should seek out a partner who views their success as being intrinsically connected to your own and demonstrates that through their practices and actions.
Be More Than an Equipment Supplier
Successful modality equipment sellers realize that if they provide more than just their equipment, they'll likely develop longer term customer relationships. By helping your customers solve more than their immediate equipment supply problem, and being part of their ongoing solution, you'll be establishing yourself as a valuable resource, as well as a partner in their future successes.
Assuming you can find the right PACS partner, you have the opportunity to increase your profits, extend your customer relationships, and add value to your sales, all contributing to standing out from the crowd and enhancing your overall success.