A Flexible LIMS Designed for Growth
In previous blog posts, we have discussed the informatics challenges facing both ends of the biopharma company spectrum. Informatics Challenges: Pharma and Biopharma R&D considered the concerns of R&D and IT managers in the top 30 so-called “big pharma” companies, and Laboratory Management Software for Biopharma Start-ups looked at the particular issues that face small biopharma start-ups.
But what about companies in the middle? Do the managers in mid-size biopharma companies stay awake at night fretting about the same informatics challenges? Or are they more concerned with organic growth through new therapeutic R&D, externalization and strategic partnerships, planning for acquisition by a bigger player (think Gilead/Pharmasset/Sovaldi for $11Bn in 2011, or AbbVie/Pharmacyclics/Imbruvica for $21Bn in 2015), or other topics?
These organizations are small enough to be nimble, but not large enough to waste precious research time (and dollars) while an outside vendor custom codes changes to their informatics systems.
Wherever the mid-size biopharmas are headed, industry observers reckonthat they will need “transformations in the laboratory and in strategy, technology, and operations.” They will need to address “cost, complexity, and regulatory scrutiny,” and “only through a combination of strong science and deep operational excellence will the biopharma industry be able to fulfill its potential…”[i]
Laboratory information management systems are not explicitly called out anywhere in these “lists of things biopharma needs to do,” but they should be. As an established LIMS vendor that has worked collaboratively with many mid-size biopharma companies is ideally placed to respond. Laboratory information management systems can directly address the challenges listed above, and provide additional potential benefits which include reducing costs, eliminating complexity, supporting science and enhancing operational excellence.
Cloud-Based LIMS Provide Scalable, Cost-Effective and Extensible Solutions for Mid-Size Biopharmas
“The cloud enables growing SMB [small and medium-sized business] life sciences organizations to quickly and efficiently scale up or down to meet demand. Changes can be made in minutes using simple point and click configuration without vendor intervention or the resulting expense. And, system functionality can be easily extended through free integrations with outside applications and data sources…”
Veeva Systems Press Release: “Rising Number of Small- to Mid-Sized Pharmaceutical Companies Switching to Cloud CRM”
The above quote nicely describes many of the key attributes which are causing many small and mid-size biopharmas to shift to cloud solutions. Thermo Scientific™ Core LIMS™ software is built on the cloud-based Thermo Fisher™ Platform for Science™ software, providing customers with scalability and cutting risk due to fixed cost expenditures. With secure cloud-based access, the system can be quickly scaled up (or down) as user groups, collaborators and data volumes change, so that productivity levels are maintained.
The latter part of the quote points directly to the benefits of using an extensible platform. The growing Marketplace lets customers add capabilities to their LIMS through apps delivering specific functionality to extend or enhance their informatics platform. In addition, customers can extend their LIMS using RESTful APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) to integrate with other systems.
Getting Nimble with in the Lab with Configurable LIMS
Mid-size biopharmaceutical companies need the ability to rapidly add new capabilities to support activities across the value chain. These organizations are small enough to be nimble, but not large enough to waste precious research time (and dollars) while an outside vendor custom codes changes to their informatics systems. The IT staff and power users of these biopharmas should be able to easily define and add new workflows, datatypes and apps to the system via configuration. Without the need for custom coding, system upgrades are quick and straightforward and total cost of ownership is lower than with traditional LIMS systems.
Leaders in mid-size biopharma companies need dynamic laboratory information management systems that support their business by reducing costs, eliminating complexity, supporting science and enhancing operational excellence. Click here to see how we are solving these problems across the Biopharma R&D industry.
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[i] Rapid growth in biopharma: Challenges and opportunities, McKinsey, December 2014, Ralf Otto, Alberto Santagostino, and Ulf Schrader, http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/health_systems_and_services/rapid_growth_in_biopharma