For pharmaceutical companies, data is in many ways the lifeblood of the industry. With New Science developments—such as genomics, molecular profiling, biomarkers and patient monitoring devices—more data sets are being generated than ever before. Additionally, new supply chain security, patient services and marketing capabilities are creating a treasure trove of operational, patient and healthcare practitioner data. All these advances will produce new data streams exponentially larger than what companies are currently dealing with. As they do so, the data’s value will exponentially grow. The data-thirsty personalized medicine market alone was valued at $493.1 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow at a 6.2% compound annual growth rate from 2021 to 2028.1
Elizabeth Theophille, Chief Technology Transformation Officer at Novartis and Dr. Petra Jantzer, Senior Managing Director, Global Accenture Partner for Novartis talk about Novartis’ Digital Transformation journey and how their Gartner award-winning, multi-cloud platform supports the big data and analytics strategy employed to ultimately Reimagine Medicine.
Novartis, an industry pioneer, has embarked on an ambitious transformation to become the leading medicines company powered by data science and digital technologies. It knows data are only as good as the tools used to analyze and exploit them. How could it make data from all the nooks and crannies of the business work to revolutionize operations, drug development and commercialization? How could it be ready for the data-rich demands of personalization and advances in new therapies like cell and gene therapies?
Accomplishing these goals was difficult with the company’s legacy IT system, data fragmentation and information silos. Novartis required the flexibility and scalability of cloud technology to consolidate data and support dynamic, future-ready technology that help improves collaboration, insights and innovation. An end-to-end data and analytics solution would offer a broader and deeper view of activities to make business and clinical decisions. The insights it yields would help reimagine medical innovation to get patients life-changing therapies, fast and at a lower cost.
1 Grand View Research, “Personalized Medicine Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Personalized Medical Care, Personalized Nutrition & Wellness, DTC Diagnostics, Telemedicine, Complementary Medicine), And Segment Forecasts, 2021 – 2028,” May 2021, Grand View Research website, accessed October 4, 2021.
From tech giants to startups and academia, Novartis collaborated with a variety of entities including Accenture on a project with the potential to transform all aspects of the business. We first helped map the stakeholder business value for this journey then created the data and analytics operating model, governance, road map, architecture, centralized data catalogue and platform for a holistic solution that harnesses new technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).
Working with Amazon Web Services (AWS) as the primary cloud provider, Novartis also engaged Microsoft Azure to create a multi-cloud platform, complying with the best clinical and pharmaceutical manufacturing practices and offering capabilities across functions. The powerful analytics capabilities enable Novartis to crunch large (and growing) data sets. At launch, approximately 35% of global company data was on the new platform, with the remaining data planned for migration.
Teams can also develop use cases for new analytics-related projects to explore and scale across the business. This helps teams experiment with potential analytics use cases to solve business challenges and profit from opportunities. In some cases, we help deliver the use case programs.
The platform ingests, unifies and refines more than 9TB of internal and external data from over 80 sources in Development, Commercial, Manufacturing and Quality, and Corporate Business Services at a rate 20% faster than legacy systems. The different types of data are put into a standardized format, which can then be used by teams from across the company to simplify reporting.
Novartis’ advanced analytics platform ingests, unifies and refines:
the amount of internal and external data the platform ingests, unifies and refines.
sources in Development, Commercial, Manufacturing and Quality, and Corporate Business Services.
faster than legacy systems.
"This solution has drastically transformed our business."
— – LOIC GIRAUD,, CoE Lead Business Analytics – Novartis
A valuable difference
Novartis is reinventing its business to drive faster decision-making and bold innovation. Teams now have a smorgasbord of analytics tools, supported by AI and ML, to simplify reporting, augment existing programs with data insights, or create new products and services.
“Data democratization” makes insights accessible to relevant users, efficiently balancing ethical, security and regulatory requirements without creating data bottlenecks. Easily interpretable data enable Novartis’ global workforce, partners and researchers to maximize collaboration, ingenuity and productivity. Novartis’ people and research partners use the new platform to cross-pollinate ideas and develop a library of innovative analytics use cases and data models to be applied across the business.
Previously, it took about two weeks to set up a new use case; now it can be done within one day. The use case development time has also accelerated from 10 days to three days. More than 200 use cases are in the pipeline and 36 are under development. Eleven use cases have been rolled out, including DESIRE, a tool for monitoring clinical trial site risk and performance. The benefits go beyond R&D to encompass all aspects of the business. A patient services use case, for instance, is helping Novartis mine call center feedback to improve marketing reach and campaigns.
Novartis has sparked a digital revolution within its business to support data-driven decision making, predict future trends, optimize operations and spur growth. As data from new sciences and medical technologies grow, Novartis has powerful tools to accelerate drug launches—and improve patient outcomes.
Use cases for new analytics-related projects that Novartis can explore and scale to solve business challenges and exploit opportunities: