The pharmaceutical industry has been regulated since 1180 and has remained a very traditional industry, as the world around it has been changed by technology.
Although pharmacies are privately-owned businesses, they have contracts with the NHS to dispense prescriptions. Well Pharmacy is the largest independent pharmacy business in the UK, and third largest chain.
There are a number of online pharmacies but Well Pharmacy is the first ‘bricks and mortar’ chain to revolutionise how they serve their customers’ needs. They appreciate that customers still want high street stores but also expect to be able to communicate and request prescriptions online.
So what did we do?
Well Pharmacy created a new digital team to look at how they could transform their business, focusing on every aspect of the customer journey. They came to Infinity Works because they knew of our past successes in working with the NHS, and asked us to become part of their digital team.
We worked closely with their digital team, helping them navigate the potential and possibilities of digital change. We also worked alongside user research and service design specialists to help evaluate where we could make the biggest difference and what it would look like. We were completely immersed in their business, doing anything that needed doing to make this a successful project.
Working with Infinity Works has been paramount to the success of our project. I've worked with many engineering consultancies in the past, but none have been able to tick the boxes that Infinity Works has done.
Our teams decided on two projects to focus on: the first was building a digital prescription service, with a focus on an easy-to-use design, and the second was making improvements to the website store finder function.
Building a digital prescription delivery service
This game-changing digital prescription delivery service significantly improved the customer experience, and certainly made life easier for many Well customers.
With the focus completely on usability, we ensured it was an incredibly easy-to-use service for anyone, from an 84-year-old with limited mobility to a busy working parent who cannot use a pharmacy during usual working hours.
Being agile was of vital importance for this project, so a transactional prototype was built within three months. The next step was to scale up the trial, ensuring that our audience did not involve anyone with a serious medical issue for ethical reasons.
During the test phase, the team built an operations centre room above a pharmacy so we had a full view of every step of the actual process right through to it being dispensed to the customer.
We started out with just five test customers, very quickly scaling to 50,000 customers and 700 orders per day.
The end product involves the customer’s prescription being sent to the Well Pharmacy warehouse; the order fulfilled by robotics; and then dispatched with free delivery.
Statistics showed that the Find a Store webpage was the most popular, but feedback scores on satisfaction were low. We knew that customers not only wanted to find their closest Well Pharmacy quickly and easily, but also the opening times.
To improve usability, we made sure this was fully mobile-optimised; that it delivered all the information customers needed and increased the accuracy of the opening times for all 780 stores, through clever use of automation and Google integration.
Infinity Works' drive to understand customer needs centrally, the ability of the team on the ground to execute this and push to deliver is fantastic. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them to any business.
22,000 new customers signed up the app and website within six months – some way above the target of 14,000.
Well Pharmacy mobile phone app shortlisted for ‘Best App’ award at Northern Digital Awards 2019.
Steven Harper, Engineering Practice Lead, Infinity Works Manchester