Pharma’s New Focus: Intelligent Technology

  • Published:
    May 27, 2020
  • Category:
    White Paper
  • Topic:
    Artificial Intelligence

Remote Technology & Intelligent Systems: The New Standard for Pharma

As COVID-19 spread throughout the world, it changed every aspect of business and social interaction as we knew it. Restrictions on travel, in-person gatherings and activities have vastly altered the way businesses and consumers interact. From virtual real estate tours and car sales to Telehealth appointments and online pharma team collaboration, our global B2C and B2B communities have reprioritized the use of smart technology and remote, virtual collaboration platforms to get business done.

Remote tech

Remote technology platforms have become one of the most significant game changing factors during this evolution of our “new normal.” This has been especially true for the life science industry. These organizations are reimagining the way work gets done in the lab, the suite and with related industry partners.

Virtual platforms with remote technology and AR features such as Apprentice’s Tandem solution, have been invaluable during this time, connecting key teams in and out of the lab and suite, facilitating CMO/CRO processes, providing a seamless transition from FAT to SATs, and using remote telepresence for site tours that accelerate clearances responsible for pushing drug manufacturing along. It’s no surprise that this complex industry is now turning to technology solutions that can support them through treatments, therapies and vaccines that are now arguably more important than ever.

COVID-19 threatened what was already an intricate pharma supply chain made up of interconnected global sites, partners, suppliers and vendors who all play an integral part in getting critical products to market for the people who need them the most. A disruption on one end can cause severe delays that impact drug production. As a result, life science organizations are now looking to implement reliable, intelligent systems that promote remote communication and efficient process completion. Intelligent systems, such as Apprentice, cause no disruption in processes, are low risk systems, and offer easy adoption, even with out-of-the-box solutions.

Digitization and intelligent technology

The life science industry – especially those with more traditional methods of batch management and procedure execution – is shifting their focus toward fast adoption of new technologies that streamline and simplify processes while preventing any future delays.

Life science leaders are adopting smart manufacturing practices, many going beyond digitization and adding artificial intelligence and machine learning tools that help build a more resilient, agile, Pharma 4.0 system. Pharma teams are looking to the future of manufacturing and realizing that the future is now, spurring greater interest in advancements that will carry them through this pandemic while enhancing their operations for the long-term.

Intelligent platforms make an exceptional amount of data available for analysis. As a result, new insights are uncovered and once unforeseen predictions can be made, maximizing operational efficiency and transforming core processes. This technology allows you to bring data together so that you can continuously monitor conditions and prevent issues before they occur, or respond to changes or events quickly based on recommend solutions. As issues are addressed, your intelligent system helps you manage future disruptions by offering better solutions each time.

Competitive survival

As we as learn as a society how to adjust to the current state of affairs, remote collaboration tools and intelligent technology platforms that may have once been a “nice to have” for many organizations, have become a need to have for most. These systems have become essential for sustaining daily operations and fostering growth during this economic downtown.

At Apprentice, we look forward to guiding our life science customers and their teams through this difficult time, helping them catch up on timelines and get critical products to market in the safest, most efficient way possible.

Most of the main challenges facing manufacturers today can be broadly categorized as disruptions. The basis of this disruption is the move from a relatively aligned value chain, wherein manufactures relied on relatively fewer suppliers and customers in a more restricted geographical space, to one that has become global, fragmented, dynamic and uncertain.

Disruption from Globalization

Globalization provides manufacturers with more options, and more challenges, than ever before. Competitors, customers and suppliers can come from anywhere in the world. Hence, political disruptions in distant regions can have a much stronger impact on a manufacturer than just a decade ago. Political issues can manifest themselves as rapid currency fluctuations, which can quickly increase costs or decrease profits. Major industries within countries can become privatized, or, conversely, can come under stronger government control, leading to instability in global markets. Trade barriers can change, as can their more pragmatic outcomes such as the efficiency of ports and varying standards and enforcement of customs. Material costs, wages, quality standards and numerous other variables across the world complicate the purchase, lead times, shipping, and even manufacturing and sales of products.

Another global challenge comes from climate change. For example, changing environmental legislation can lead to different product and manufacturing standards in different countries – even in different provinces, states or cities. Weather patterns become more erratic, more difficult to predict, and weather events can become fiercer. In an industry with growing global competition and improving methods leading to downward pressures on prices and margins, delays from any of these global conditions can wreak havoc on the bottom line and a company’s competitive positioning.