In the dynamic landscape of the pharmaceutical industry, digital transformation has become a paramount goal for companies seeking to stay competitive and ensure the highest quality in their products.
We saw first-hand how a UK-based pharmaceutical company with multiple Market Authorisations (MAH) automated its supply chain and quality operations successfully with Contract Manufacturing Organisations (CMO) and service providers, the challenges they faced, the solutions adopted, and insights gained in the process.
Our client, a UK-based virtual pharmaceutical organisation, is leading the way for digital transformation in the industry. With a workforce of over 100 dedicated employees, they manufacture and distribute over 50 generic and branded pharmaceutical products to the UK, Netherlands, Spain and Scandinavian markets and have cultivated relationships with more than 25 contract manufacturers and partners, forming a supply chain network that stretches across international boundaries from Europe to LATAM. Their dedication to excellence, innovation and providing high-quality pharmaceuticals on time positioned them perfectly for embarking on a digital transformation path.
Our client’s goal of digital nirvana is hindered by disparate silo systems, a multitude of departments, geographically distributed functions, and internal + external teams, which are leading to inefficiencies, duplication of efforts, increased risk of errors, miscommunication and mistranslation in their supply chain. They also lack visibility, needing a unified platform for real-time tracking to provide a complete picture for decision-making to increase the agility of their supply chain.
Moreover, employees faced many challenges chasing updates, leading to delays and frustrations. These limitations hinder the client’s pursuit of operational excellence and compliance with stringent regulatory requirements in the pharmaceutical sector.
1. Information Chaos
Our client faced operational hindrances, characterised by disconnected systems, prior to initiating its digital transformation journey. This lack of integration resulted in inefficiencies, duplicated efforts, and heightened error risks within their supply chain. Furthermore, partners spread across the globe, working in different timezones & languages, prolonging response times and having a knock-on effect on batch release.
2. Lacking Traceability Due to the Complexity of the Supply Chain
The absence of a unified platform for tracking the end-to-end batch manufacturing and supply created a significant challenge. The virtual pharma organisation needed a solution that would provide its workforce with a customised real-time dashboard, giving insights into the movement of products from manufacturing to distribution and associated batch documentation. Without this actionable insight and clear traceability, supply chain and quality teams were unable to plan and proactively identify issues. As a result, the teams were constantly firefighting.
3. No Clear Updates
The process of accessing critical information was convoluted and time-consuming. Employees were often left chasing updates, leading to delays and frustrations. Through design thinking workshops with our client, we discovered deficiencies in its operational framework, hindering productivity. Updates from Quality Personnel (QP), testing labs, logistics teams and other departments overlapped, causing disarray in the communication process. This shortfall was a significant barrier to achieving and maintaining strict regulatory standards of the pharmaceutical industry.
In their mission to address these challenges and spearhead a digital transformation, our client turned to OneSC, a comprehensive solution designed to revolutionise batch operations in the pharmaceutical supply chain. The results were transformative, unlocking a plethora of benefits:
1. Driving Process Standardisation
2. Connecting Systems
OneSC seamlessly connected previously disparate systems and people across the supply chain partners, creating a robust backbone for the entire operation. This integration improved data accuracy and the ability to track and manage products in real-time.
3. Streamlining Operational Communication
OneSC can reduce excessive emails, redundant meetings, and unwieldy spreadsheets by centralising information. This, in turn, not only saved significant time but also alleviated cognitive overload, allowing supply chain teams to focus on critical tasks.
4. Strategic Planning and Decision Making
With standardised access to information on a single platform, departments across the supply chain network were able to align their objectives and strategies better and take action promptly. Ultimately, this results in early detection of possible out-of-stock situations, empowering employees to react proactively and implement solutions to address disruptions.
5. Reducing Human Errors
OneSC’s automation capabilities played a pivotal role in eliminating manual tasks and transcription of data between systems. Human errors, often a concern in pharmaceutical manufacturing and distribution, were significantly reduced, enhancing the quality and safety of products.
6. Simulations & Planning
OneSC empowered the client to run scenario simulations and conduct meticulous planning. This feature was particularly valuable when making strategic decisions and optimising their supply chain.
Within six months, our focused efforts redefined success. We saved a staggering 6000 hours of valuable time by streamlining processes and optimising workflows. Witnessing a 30% reduction in clutter enhanced productivity and created a more efficient and organised work environment.
The estimated cost savings of £400k reflect the strategic decisions made, proving the immense impact on our bottom line. Moreover, a notable 20% increase in shipment utilisation showcases our commitment to maximising resources effectively. These achievements are a testament to our dedication and innovative approach, propelling us toward continued growth and success.
This case study exemplifies how a strategic digital transformation initiative leveraged OneSC to revolutionise its pharmaceutical supply chain. Overcoming challenges of disparate systems and limited visibility, they achieved a new standard of operational excellence, setting a high bar for the rest of the supply chain and Quality Assurance (QA) operations for the pharmaceutical industry.
OneSC can do the same for you - Pilot Programme
The onboarding process for OneSC’s pilot program unfolds across four stages, starting with a comprehensive scoping discussion, diving deep into your success indicators, quality assurance and supply chain criteria. This process helps tailor the program to align perfectly with your organisational objectives. With a clear product line in focus, the program outlines a timeline and resource allocation necessary for the seamless integration of OneSC into your operational workflows.
Following this, a hands-on training session primes your team, emphasising the key benefits of adopting our platform within your chosen product line. Simultaneously, the setup process for the pilot takes flight, initiating the training and onboarding sessions for users. The objective is to introduce the OneSC platform and forge a seamless path where its functional advantages become inherently evident within your processes. The OneSC platform can also support wholesale distribution activities.
Get in touch to learn more how OneSC can help you.