Pharmaceutical Distribution Software – What to Look For

Mark Canes

As a pharmaceutical company, the products you sell are controlled under a number of pieces of legislation, and it is imperative to abide by these rules in your distribution processes. The best way to manage all aspects of your company’s operations is to implement proper ERP software designed for pharmaceutical distribution companies. In addition to the standard inventory and accounting functionality found in most ERP systems, a solution designed for pharmaceutical distribution will also include more sophisticated product tracking and management functionality to help ensure that you’re adhering to regulations. Controls can also be set up, like system alerts based on user defined settings, and strong reporting to show that you have been compliant.

Key Features

● Lot Tracking   ● DEA & State License Expiry Management

● NDC # Association of Product ● Customer SKU Classification

● Revision Control   ● Pedigree Management

Lot Tracking

Lot tracking, or batch tracking, allows for product traceability to keep track of which customers received specific groups (or shipments) of items and when they were received. The supplier and date these items were purchased are also tracked, allowing managers to monitor an individual group of products (or shipment) from the supplier to their own warehouse and ultimately to the customer. Lot tracking is especially important if any of the products you distribute are recalled – associating a specific lot number to products makes it much easier to find and recall specific items.

DEA & State License Expiry Management

Search for a software solution that can identify within the system the type of license, state, license number, expiry date, and allowable drug schedule for each customer. This information should be easily accessible, allowing users to generate reports about licenses that are approaching expiry.

Customer SKU Classification

This important feature gives you as a distributor the ability to restrict type and quantity of controlled drugs that can be sold to specific customers. Users will be alerted when customers are about to exceed their quantity limits at the order level. In many instances, this is required by the DEA.

Pedigree Management

According to the FDA, “a drug pedigree is a statement of origin that identifies each prior sale, purchase, or trade of a drug, including the date of those transactions and the names and addresses of all parties to them”. To adhere to the FDA standards as a pharmaceutical distributor, find a system that includes pedigree management, with the ability to enter information about a specific drug’s route from the manufacturer to your company. Another important component to this feature is automatic printing and emailing of these pedigree documents.

Aside from these more detailed features, make sure you find a software for your pharmaceutical company that handles basic inventory management, accounting, contact management, and order entry & processing. Look for a fully integrated ERP system to house all of your company information in one central database, and ensure compliance to the many regulations that affect you as a drug distributor. Download “What to Look for in Pharmaceutical Distribution Management Software” to learn more about ERP in the pharmaceutical industry and what important features to look for in a system.