Spreading the Home Team Advantage Along the Continent
Philips Healthcare's Latin American operation couldn't count on a better headquarters site than Argentina. The company set foot in these shores in 1935 and quickly became a fix among top 10 top of mind surveys regarding brand awareness, a feat rarely achieved outside of the Netherlands. "We have been the number one company within our trade for the last five years in our territory, a unique achievement within our corporation," shared the region's director.
Wide Coverage Through Healthcare Technology
The company's field record within Latin America is one of milestones for being the first to bring latest-technology medical devices into public and private hospitals and medical centers. Current focus areas for Philips in Latin America are cardiology, oncology and women's health, in the clinical practice; while respiratory disorders, degenerative diseases and sleep disorders such as asthma, diabetes and apnea -among others- are being treated by easy to use monitoring devices with still-to-be-developed remote systems for diagnosis and consultancy.
"The clients we have strategically targeted in both public and private sectors have resulted in a successful coverage of a fair amount of population," pointed Alvarez.
Improving Quality of Life By Reducing Stays at Hospitals
Philips global philosophy of contributing to wellbeing and a healthier lifestyle is reinforced by a global phenomenon: people becoming older and retiring in the short to medium term will out-number the population who is currently in a productive stage of their lives, financially supporting public healthcare systems. Crunching public resources makes it harder for all the population to obtain decent medical services; it becomes more difficult to find an empty bed in a hospital for patients who must remain hospitalized for a certain time.
Philips efforts and development of new, more advanced devices and techniques are focused into avoiding surgery rooms, traumatic experiences and long hospital stays by technology to recur to for an outpatient procedure through needles and catheters to unclog any artery and have the patient in and out of the hospital in less than 24 hours. This strategy is supported by the company's "hospital to home" policy, by manufacturing easy to use devices for home monitoring
"We are all in for everything that prevents patients from constant visits and long stays at the hospital, our priority is for patients to remain home through prevention and monitoring," the executive stressed.
Room to Grow
At a large scale, the whole of the region is covered through Philips' distributors in every country. The present challenge is taking that technology into the inner territory of these nations, where currently a handful of countries now find themselves in a position to invest at. Recently, Bolivia and Peru have been able to reach into communities which were previously difficult to access and need proper regular medical attention facilities and infrastructure.
"We are taking on the challenge of improving our coverage of Bolivia, Peru, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Panama and Ecuador, where investment in public health services is increasing," Alvarez said.
Taking the Best from Every Staff Member
Philips HC LatAm's success extends into being ranked as a top "Great Place to Work ®" company. Since 2010, the management opted for flexible schedules, providing employees of a much required freedom in their time for engaging in their own activities; Philips demands its staff to fulfill satisfactorily a number of hours per week in case they need to leave the offices at some time for personal reasons or even to attend colleges and continuous education programs.
The empowerment and delivery rates from the team have since increased in the company's horizontal structure, which also allows for open lines of communication and opinion exchange between personnel and upper management.
"Our staff's rate of commitment increases, which is not good only for workplace surveys, but for actually carrying on with the company's plans," noted the executive.
Long-Lasting Relationships with the Proper Suppliers
Counting on the best possible suppliers is a priority for Philips HC LatAm. Sharing core values such as timely delivery, dedication and craftsmanship are a must by any company aiming to offer their services to the Dutch multinational, which specializes in providing highly accurate, calibrated, customized machinery, which sometimes can weight up to five tons, requiring specialized transportation or warehousing conditions.
Customs agencies are also a trade in which Philips HC deals with both eyes wide open, since imports and exports of finished products are a regular task for an operation spanning such a vast territory.
"It's an essential part of our business to develop these long-lasting strategic partnerships with certain suppliers," Alvarez explained.
"Continuum of Care": Philips' Life Cycle for the Future
Philips HC South LatAm's growth projections are of 10 percent or more during the next few years, based in its current focus on health and wellbeing.
"Philips' strategy is to become totally focused on wellness for end consumers," the regional senior director finalized