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Beyond the Pitch

Vantage Point Logistics Helps Customers Significantly Reduce Shipping Costs

Vantage Point Logistics (VPL) has some good news for health care systems and universities that want to cut their costs.

“We help them save money by managing and reducing their inbound shipping costs,” says Eric McGlade, VPL co-founder.

“Inbound shipping may not be an obvious first place to save,” he says, “but with the visibility and control that VPL brings, we can help customers save more than 30 percent.”

Prior to Vantage Point Logistics, McGlade and co-founder Scott Crow were leaders of the largest logistics and freight management company focused on the healthcare market. Over seven years, they saved their 1,400 customers more than $55 million per year.

With cutbacks in federal, state, and local funding as well as a groundswell of objections to escalating tuition costs, colleges and universities everywhere are running into budgetary issues.

VPL can help achieve savings on inbound shipping costs without any up front implementation costs and with virtually no change to the institution’s daily operations. Purchasing and receiving procedures don’t change.

How VPL works.

Colleges and universities order from thousands of vendors. Prices get negotiated, but shipping costs on thousands of small packages are harder to control.

“You can think about it in personal terms,” McGlade explains. “How many times have you seen those television commercials where you pay a few dollars for the item but shipping adds another $20.00 or more? A similar thing happens with vendors that supply universities. They are making money on shipping costs.”

Many organizations may not even realize how big a cost-reduction opportunity this inbound shipping may actually be.

From the customer’s perspective, VPL does all the work to ensure the vendors are using the customer’s discounted shipping rates.  If there is pushback from the vendors, VPL works through that on their each of their customers’ behalf.  Then the institution is billed directly from VPL.

This may sound simple—after all, retail and automotive supply chains have been managing in-bound freight for many years—but hospitals and universities have complex and very sophisticated needs.

For example, there’s the requirement to break out every single charge according to the accounting rules that are dictated by the various sources of funds. In a hospital, the allocation system has to be told whether a box of bandages should be charged to the operating room or the catheter lab.

VPL systems are specifically designed to manage this detail and complexity.  This, along with industry reputation and know-how, makes up the company’s “secret sauce.”

“Our systems are built to take data from our customer and match that with shipping data so that the all charges are allocated to the appropriate grant, department, or general ledger code,” McGlade said. “We break it out to the nth degree. We’re the first company to do this for the higher education market.”

VPL benefits from being located in SpringBox Labs.

“The networking and support for a startup here is fantastic,” McGlade said. “TechColumbus has done a great job of being responsive.”

VPL is a job creator, adding a dozen jobs to the Central Ohio economy.

“We’ve had fantastic success with early adopters,” McGlade said. “In higher education, it takes a while to get them engaged, but once we do, the results are fantastic. We are working with customers such as Emory University and Emory Health, the University of California, and Ohio State. I wouldn’t be surprised if we add another ten employees in the next year.”

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