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Innovation, Transformation and a 137-Year-Old Legacy Built on Trust

Jones Healthcare Logo

Innovation, Transformation and a 137-Year-Old Legacy Built on Trust

Drove more than 15% of addressable orders online just one week after national launch

Hit year-one goals for registered accounts and online orders just one week after national launch

Founded in 1882, launched first-of-its-kind online ordering platform in September 2019

Standing the Test of Time By Putting Customers First

In 1882, Henry Jones founded a company with a single mission: to serve the people of the Canadian pharmacy market with the highest quality products and service. Henry promised that when it came to deadlines, quality, price and service, he would always keep his word. He left a legacy built on trust.

137 years and four generations later, Jones has never wavered from Henry’s legacy. Though they’ve changed and transformed from an apothecary packaging provider to a fully integrated and award-winning provider of premier packaging and medication-dispensing solutions, over the years one thing has always remained true: Jones sees the people behind the businesses they serve.

To thrive for more than a century, you have to innovate along the way. Today, Jones serves more than 12,000 pharmacies across the world through its Healthcare division and is committed to not only providing outstanding service and end-to-end packaging solutions, but also simplifying the process. So when their healthcare customers asked for more efficient ways to buy, Jones rose to the challenge without hesitation.

How Do You Serve Your Customers for the Next 137 Years? eCommerce.

As the industry evolved and technology advanced, Jones recognized a shift in their customers’ preferences. Jones knew that in order to make their customers jobs easier, they needed to provide more efficient ways to manage the ordering process. So, they ventured into eCommerce to prepare their business for the future.

In order to validate their approach, Jones first conducted customer research to determine whether the need for a more robust online solution was truly something their customers would utilize.

Jones Packaging Survey Results

The results proved the Jones team’s hypothesis right. Here are some of the key highlights:

  • Jones customers were familiar with online ordering and conducted business online with other companies
  • 80.67% of customer respondents said they would find an online ordering system either very valuable or extremely valuable
  • Customers wanted eCommerce because they believed an online ordering system would be quicker, easier and available 24/7
  • Customers wanted features including real-time order/shipping status, tracking and re-order, eCatalogue – pictures, descriptions, customer specific pricing of all products, account and order history

So, Jones had their answer. Customers wanted eCommerce. They wanted a frictionless order experience. They preferred a way to get in, buy what they need, get out and carry on with their day. They wanted to have confidence in what they were ordering.

Building a Team to Champion Transformation

In order to make eCommerce a reality, Jones needed the right people in the right shoes. We talked with the eCommerce team at Jones to get the scoop on the company’s transformation. First, let’s meet the team:

Kelly-Ann Ethier currently serves as the Project Lead, eCommerce but has dedicated her talents to Jones over the past 10 years in various roles. Her very first role was as a Customer Support Associate. She processed orders the traditional way. Her additional experience as a Product Support Wholesale Specialist meant Ethier understood all of Jones’ products and how they worked. She held various roles in sales, customer service and support. Because Kelly knew the business head-to-toe, she became the ultimate translator. Kelly was the bridge between the business and eCommerce.

In 2017, Jeffery Runnalls was hired as the Controller for Jones. He immediately joined the eCommerce conversation and today, serves as the Director of Finance and Operations. From the beginning, he knew the company needed to invest in eCommerce, he just wasn’t sure what it would look like. So Jeff proceeded to build the business case for eCommerce. Jeff also realized that eCommerce was more than a website. He was instrumental in driving process changes that allowed for business transformation.

After leadership was onboard with investing in eCommerce, Jones hired Lisa Li as the E-Commerce Data & Adoption Coordinator in August 2018. Lisa is in charge of data management and user adoption. She is focused on building better user experiences and brings constant innovative ideas to improve the eCommerce website.

Kelly-Ann Ethier currently serves as the Project Lead, eCommerce but has dedicated her talents to Jones over the past 10 years in various roles. Her very first role was as a Customer Support Associate. She processed orders the traditional way. Her additional experience as a Product Support Wholesale Specialist meant Ethier understood all of Jones’ products and how they worked. She held various roles in sales, customer service and support. Because Kelly knew the business head-to-toe, she became the ultimate translator. Kelly was the bridge between the business and eCommerce.

In 2017, Jeffery Runnalls was hired as the Controller for Jones. He immediately joined the eCommerce conversation and today, serves as the Director of Finance and Operations. From the beginning, he knew the company needed to invest in eCommerce, he just wasn’t sure what it would look like. So Jeff proceeded to build the business case for eCommerce. Jeff also realized that eCommerce was more than a website. He was instrumental in driving process changes that allowed for business transformation.

After leadership was onboard with investing in eCommerce, Jones hired Lisa Li as the E-Commerce Data & Adoption Coordinator in August 2018. Lisa is in charge of data management and user adoption. She is focused on building better user experiences and brings constant innovative ideas to improve the eCommerce website.

Kelly-Ann Ethier currently serves as the Project Lead, eCommerce but has dedicated her talents to Jones Packaging over the past 10 years in various roles. Her very first role was as a Customer Support Associate. She processed orders the traditional way. Her additional experience as a Product Support Wholesale Specialist meant Ethier understood all of Jones’ products and how they worked. She held various roles in sales, customer service and support. Because Kelly knew the business head-to-toe, she became the ultimate translator. Kelly was the bridge between the business and eCommerce.

In 2017, Jeffery Runnalls was hired as the Controller for Jones. He immediately joined the eCommerce conversation and today, serves as the Director of Finance and Operations. From the beginning, he knew the company needed to invest in eCommerce, he just wasn’t sure what it would look like. So Jeff proceeded to build the business case for eCommerce. Jeff also realized that eCommerce was more than a website. He was instrumental in driving process changes that allowed for business transformation.

After leadership was onboard with investing in eCommerce, Jones hired Lisa Li as the E-Commerce Data & Adoption Coordinator in August 2018. Lisa is in charge of data management and user adoption. She is focused on building better user experiences and brings constant innovative ideas to improve the eCommerce website.

Together Kelly, Jeff and Lisa are taking innovative steps to building a better future for Jones and its customers.

Discovering the Right Technology

After establishing their goals, vision, strategy and team, Jones began their search for the right eCommerce engine upon which to build the online healthcare experience.

Jones’ key eCommerce requirements included:

  • Account login/accessibility
  • Integration with their SAP ERP
  • Real-time order status/history
  • Reorder capabilities
  • Promotions capabilities
  • Frictionless checkout process
  • Unique user profiles
  • Catalog capability for generic, branded and custom SKUs

“We had talked to a lot of other providers that met some of our requirements. It seemed like they could maybe get where we needed them to be, but we didn’t really have confidence. But with Insite, the functionality we needed was all there. It wasn’t some customization we had to build. Our requirements were met right out of the box,” said Jeff Runnalls.

Prioritizing Product Content

As they journeyed through their transformation, Jones quickly realized their product portfolio was disorganized. It was hard to recognize part numbers and there was no methodology for categorization.

As part of the transformation to get their product catalog online, Jones had to organize their portfolio into product categories, details, groups and provide product images from multiple angles.

“I’d honestly call this a period of self-discovery. We looked inward and we said, what are all these products that we’re selling, and how do we group them? How do we categorize them? The benefits went beyond eCommerce. We now have a far better understanding of our whole portfolio of products. eCommerce was a catalyst that drove a broader business discussion,” said Jeff Runnalls.

The Jones portfolio includes three kinds of products:

  • Generic, agnostic products, consumed by any pharmacy
  • Branded products that are tied to a specific pharmacy brand (equivalent to CVS or Walgreens)
  • Customized products for small pharmacies

Jones has anywhere from 600 (in-stock products) to up to 10,000 custom SKUs. They needed a solution that could handle every kind of product. That’s where Insite came in.

Platinum Partner XCentium Implements InsiteCommerce

From April to May 2018, Jones started the implementation discovery process with one of Insite’s platinum implementation partners, XCentium. XCentium worked diligently to ensure all of Jones’ requirements were met with the solution. After Jones got the final seal of approval from leadership, XCentium began the implementation process. In June 2019, Jones deployed a soft launch of their eCommerce solution, with a national launch following in September 2019.

“Overall we were quite happy with the implementation. In a 1-2 week period of discovery, XCentium wrapped their heads around 137 years worth of business, products, customers and processes and helped build a strategy for moving our business online,” said Jeff Runnalls. “When we look at the end result it’s clear they definitely understood what we needed to take our business into the future,” he continued.

Jones’ previous processes were not conducive to an online platform. The implementation process required the team at Jones to streamline and simplify their processes.

“We had to change our engine on the airplane while we were still in the air. We needed XCentium to build the eCommerce platform to an end state that didn’t even exist yet as far as our processes were concerned. We were swapping the engine in mid-flight and we are very grateful that we had both an implementation partner and software provider that were nimble enough to make that happen,” said Jeff Runnalls.

Jones knew that it wasn’t just about deploying a website then moving away from it. It was about changing the way their business operated. They rewrote all their business processes as they went.

The New World with eCommerce

Jones eCommerce Website

Before implementing InsiteCommerce, the old buying process for Jones looked something like this: a customer would call and say, I’m Jim at Jim’s pharmacy and I want my labels. That would form the PO. Jones wanted to move that conversation online. Today Jim can go login to his account, view his information, reorder and self-serve. Plus, in the previous model Jim would simply have to trust that Jones knew what labels he needed. Today, as part of the online solution, Jim can physically see his labels before he orders. Plus, Jim only sees what he needs to see. He doesn’t get bombarded with products that are irrelevant to Jim’s business. The online solution is not only making customers more efficient, it’s building confidence.

“We needed a solution that could show everybody exactly what they needed and nothing more,” said Jeff Runnalls.

In addition to building customer efficiency and confidence, eCommerce is helping Jones increase their share of wallet by enabling the team to proactively cross-sell and upsell to customers.

“There are about 10,000 pharmacies across Canada. I would be willing to bet that somewhere deep in the shelves of each of those pharmacies, there’s a Jones product,” said Jeff. “We already have solid market penetration. But historically, we haven’t had a platform like this to clearly display our entire offering to customers. We may sell one product to Jim’s pharmacy, but Jim may not know we sell other products. Building the online portfolio allows us to get more of our products in front of Jim,” he continued.

Finally, the eCommerce system is also aiding with data hygiene. When customers register for the online solution, for example, they must provide valid email addresses. Thus, eCommerce is helping Jones market to customers more effectively.

“Previously, our database didn’t have correct emails for all our customers. The online portal is helping us gather emails and improve our data hygiene. Customers are opting in and giving us their consent to send them marketing emails,” said Lisa Li.

Early Success

Just three months after their soft launch and one week after their national launch, Jones has already exceeded their year-one goals for eCommerce.

When they originally presented the eCommerce investment to leadership, the Jones eCommerce team believed they could get 10% of their individual store orders online. One week after the national launch of their eCommerce platform they had already seen over 15% online.

In addition, they aimed for 1,000 registered users at the end of year one. One week after national launch, they had more than 1,100 registered users.

“Our early success metrics validate the importance and value of a tool like this for our customers. We’ve received nothing but positive feedback. Even customers who for whatever reason don’t want to place orders online, have found value in just looking at our catalog and product information,” said Jeff.

Though they’ve focused their eCommerce experience on individual stores (which make up 40% of their customer base), Jones also sells through wholesalers. About 60% of their business comes through large EDI orders from wholesalers.

“Beyond the benefits we’ve seen on the individual store order side of the business, our online catalog has become a system of reference for the wholesalers we serve. Their part numbers are available and we’ve taken control of our product data. Our wholesale customers can now reference all our product data,” said Kelly.

Jones has been collecting customer feedback about the online solution. Here are just a few quotes from their customers about the experience:

“The Pharmacy Store has made ordering pharmacy supplies significantly easier for me and my team.”
“Items are easier to find and I like how the photos make it easy to identify products.”
“The ability to upload an order without having to search for items is a time-saving feature we’ve been using.”
“Favorites Lists make finding the products we need easy – without searching.”

A Bright Future

Because they’ve already achieved their goals for year one just one week after national launch, the Jones team is bringing their year two and three goals forward.

Initially they aimed to have 25% of their individual store orders online. Given their success, they are marching toward 25% by year one and 35-40% by year two.

“At the end of the day, there are 10,000 pharmacies out there that use our product. So our end game is to have 10,000 pharmacies registered online,” said Jeff Runnalls.

Jones has found new ways to serve their customers, but they’ve always remained true to the legacy of trust Henry Jones left all those years ago. Insite is proud to be Jones’ trusted eCommerce partner and we’re confident that generations from now, the Jones legacy will still hold true.

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