In brief

In brief

  • We asked senior business and IT execs from 70 life sciences companies to understand their cloud strategies, progress to date and plans for the future.
  • Life sciences companies ranked the lowest in achieving their expected innovation, data access and analytics goals from cloud migration.
  • By taking a new perspective on cloud, life sciences companies can truly align on business goals and outcomes.
  • Four critical areas for life sciences companies to address when implementing cloud computing across their business.

Businesses have been making increased investments in cloud initiatives to improve elasticity, efficiency and innovation for the last several years. However, achieving the full benefits of cloud is complicated and involves multiple dimensions including rethinking strategy, technology, skills development, business processes as well as organizational design. But just because a business has started their cloud journey doesn't mean they are on the path to value.

In fact, compared to the eleven industries surveyed, life sciences companies ranked the lowest in achieving their innovation, data access and analytics goals from cloud.

We’ve highlighted three key reasons as to why this could be happening:

Life sciences is taking a tech-first approach

Both cost and speed were ranked as top priorities for execs surveyed while business enablement and resilience/business continuity fell to the bottom.

Progress to date trails most other industries

Two-thirds of life sciences companies are not realizing the full benefits of their cloud migration journeys.

There is a low confidence in their approach

Less than half of life sciences executives (43%) said they are very satisfied with the cloud outcomes achieved to date.

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Overcoming barriers

Cloud requires a commitment to experiment, fail and improve next time.

When part of an overall digital strategy, cloud has the ability to become a true business enabler allowing life sciences companies an opportunity to unlock data, collaborate across the ecosystem, improve engagement and more.

What is the #1 barrier to your organization achieving its expectations from cloud?


Legacy infrastructure and/or application sprawl


Infrastructure is a bottleneck


Security and compliance risks

By taking a new perspective on cloud – from a technology “cost of doing business” to embracing the art of the possible – life sciences companies can truly align on business goals and outcomes. In fact, the rapid response for COVID-19 vaccines, delivery of digital therapeutics and cell and gene therapies are a few examples of how companies are setting the pace for transformation with innovation taking the lead.

A step forward

Life sciences executives shared that their level of “business enablement” satisfaction far exceeds their results compared to the other categories.

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Achieving value

Realizing the full potential of cloud requires more than technology. Life sciences companies must incorporate new ways of working and develop new roles and skills. Four critical areas for companies to address include:

Embrace cloud as a CEO priority

The entire business needs to be part of the solution and agree cloud can enable business initiatives that drive efficiency, innovation and growth.

Business value focus

Develop a cloud strategy anchored to economic business cases to identify revenue upside and cost efficiency opportunities while aligning goals.

Partnering for success

Leverage the skills and experience of appropriate partners. Cloud managed services can help companies access key skills while keeping costs down.

Workforce and culture change management

Implement talent readiness programs and new operating models to evolve culture, transforming how people work and how they meet rapidly changing needs.

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Geoff Schmidt

Managing Director – Cloud First, Life Sciences


Technology Vision 2021 for Life Sciences
How MedTechs can boost growth with the cloud

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