Lori Jones Troublemaker at VPL

We all hate to pay shipping costs. We’ll add a few more items to our electronic cart if it means we get free shipping, or we’ll search for coupon codes, or wait until our favorite online store has a free shipping promotion.

Here’s a little-known fact, though, shipping adds millions of dollars to our nation’s growing healthcare costs every year.

Lori Jones and the team at VPL are creating some trouble in working to change that.

The Backstory

Hospitals need supplies to do what they do. They order those supplies from vendors. Those vendors add freight charges to get those supplies from their factories and warehouses to the hospitals. But those freight charges often hide substantial profit.

Jones says that without visibility, hospitals have little way of uncovering or knowing what those true costs are.

The Solution

“We’re transforming the freight management space in healthcare through technology. Our software solutions provide choice, transparency, and control to the providers,” Jones said.

Jones goes on to say that by using VPL’s software solutions, the providers gain visibility into the movement of products throughout their supply chain network. “We’re capturing millions of data points, enhancing supply chain visibility, while saving them significant dollars.”

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How is that Troublemaking?

This isn’t VPL’s first rodeo in freight management solutions. The company’s founders have been in the space for years, sold one successful company, and have come back in with a new solution that empowers the provider.

Lori says that this new approach and insight can go a long way toward transforming the healthcare supply chain.

“The provider has traditionally been at the mercy of many of these suppliers,” Jones said. “They’re hiding margin in the cost of freight — upward to 30 to 40 percent — and we’re exposing that.”

She goes on to say that by giving them this insight into the costs of their freight, VPL helps the hospitals and health systems become much more efficient. “It will get them on the path of truly understanding their total landed cost of products,” Jones said.

An important part of what the VPL software does is automate manual processes to give greater control to their customers. From sourcing rates, to auditing invoices, to holding suppliers accountable to agreed-upon contract terms, the VPL solution eases what can be an incredibly burdensome and tedious task, all while saving money for their clients.

What Propels Lori and VPL?

It’s clear when talking with Lori that she’s passionate about VPL and helping their clients. “We know that they have so many challenges coming at them that they need easy wins,” she says. And she knows, as does everyone in her organization, that they can provide those wins.

“Passion is always a must,” she says when choosing opportunities for herself and coaching her team. And she believes in challenging the status quo – which is what VPL does.

“I did not get where I am by being just being average,” Lori said. “I think that’s a must for us an organization for people to want to work with us.”

She also believes that sincerity and transparency are keys to her success and to VPL’s success. She says it’s important that they demonstrate that they are working together with the larger provider community to help them versus merely competing for their already-stretched attention spans.

In my book, Lori lives up to the ideal of the best kind of Troublemaker.

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