Encompass Group sees online contracting with aptitude as attractive option - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Encompass Group sees online contracting with aptitude as attractive option

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SOURCE aptitude LLC

Medical supplier increasing speed to market, gaining new business

IRVING, Texas, Feb. 5, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Suppliers and distributors of medical products and equipment are always interested in hearing about faster, more efficient ways of gaining new business with hospitals.  So when Tom Sweatt, Executive Vice President of Health Systems for Encompass, LLC of McDonough, Ga, was approached about participating in healthcare's first online contracting market, he was naturally very curious about the promise to modernize aspects of the process.  

After just a few months, Encompass, a leading manufacturer of reusable textiles, professional apparel, and disposable and single-use medical products is one of the more active sellers on aptitude.  In fact, the organization has already seen new business in categories like patient footwear, pillows and anti-embolism stockings. Sweatt says that if there is an opportunity for a hospital to reduce costs on items they purchase, then they will act on it. And aptitude brings that opportunity.   

"We have already seen a nice ROI in several categories through aptitude," Mr. Sweatt added.  "Some of those in fact, weren't even on the customer's radar previously because they didn't view it as a big part of their purchasing activity. But once they saw the data in aptitude, they said, 'wow, there are some dollars being spent here, and maybe there's an opportunity for some savings.' So aptitude is getting us in front of new customers, and we're able to close business fairly quickly as a result."

As an example, Mr. Sweatt said Encompass recently agreed to contracts valued at nearly $250,000 in patient footwear alone and noted that without aptitude, the deals would have been unlikely.

"We found aptitude to be an attractive option, because it really does help us become more efficient," Mr. Sweatt said.  "We can act on requests very quickly and then move forward without having a whole lot of back-and-forth or red tape that can slow the process down. In fact, thanks to aptitude, we find we're now able to close business faster than ever, which helps customers get to their cost savings faster as well."

The pressure to deliver cost effective medical supplies to customers is what makes aptitude so appealing to those executives looking for a way to execute direct contracts with buyers.  Offline, this process is manual, complicated and riddled with redundancies, so much so that the process from opening negotiations to closing a deal can take anywhere from 6 to 9 months. But through the automated online platform that streamlines the process between buyers and sellers, contracts are awarded in just 38 days on average.  

"Stories like Tom's illustrate exactly why aptitude was created in the first place," said Troy Kirchenbauer, General Manager of aptitude LLC. "We felt there was an opportunity to innovate the healthcare supply chain, and it's very rewarding to see how this idea is playing out in the real world - especially when we hear about the success suppliers and hospitals are having with aptitude."

As the industry's first online contracting market, aptitude facilitates the entire contracting life cycle while providing insight and value to both hospitals and suppliers.  Since launching in April of 2013, the market has been growing at a steady pace by adding hospitals, suppliers and categories to support contracting efforts in the healthcare industry.   

"It's just a different way of doing business," Mr. Sweatt added. "We are contracting in a way that is beneficial to us and to our customers. We are putting old ideas aside and looking at the future way of doing business." 

About aptitude LLC:
As healthcare's first direct contracting market, aptitude LLC is meeting the evolving demands of today's healthcare organizations.  Hospitals and suppliers are intrigued by how aptitude re-imagines the contracting model and provides the driving force for a more logical market in which both parties can achieve mutually beneficial, committed purchasing relationships for a better value proposition for both. 

About Encompass LLC:
Encompass is one of the leading manufacturers and marketers of reusable textiles, professional apparel, therapeutic support surfaces and disposable and single use medical products. By focusing on innovation, product knowledge and customer service, Encompass strives to always meet the needs of its clients and surpass their expectations.

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