European Life Sciences Companies Look to Enhance Analytics Capabilities

ISG Provider Lens™ report sees life sciences companies in the region using technology improvements to support a wide range of initiatives, including R&D

European life sciences companies are increasing their investments in analytics and other technologies to speed up research and development and drive patient-centric innovation, according to a new report published today by Information Services Group (ISG) , a leading global technology research and advisory firm.

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens™ Life Sciences Digital Services Report for Europe finds life sciences companies in the region also interested in using analytics to support marketing and sales efforts and optimize supply chain operations. MedTech companies, in particular, are looking to service providers to assist with digital transformations.

“Digital transformation is key in the European life sciences industry’s ongoing efforts to transform itself and find new paths to innovation,” said Barbara Florschuetz, ISG partner based in Germany. “The industry is looking to digital initiatives to drive operational efficiencies and to regain long-term sustainability and resilience.”

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“The industry is looking to digital initiatives to drive operational efficiencies and to regain long-term sustainability and resilience.”

The report sees a growing use of digital technologies in Europe to access healthcare, with patients using platforms to book appointments, access virtual health consultations and manage their health remotely. Many European consumers are embracing technology to track and maintain their health and engage with treatment, and they are willing to share healthcare data if they get value in return.

COVID-19 has been a driving force behind recent and ongoing regulatory changes in Europe that will impact every pharmaceutical, biotechnology or MedTech company that currently sells or sponsors products in the European Union, the report says. For example, the Europe Medicines Agency (EMA) has created a collaborative approach for managing future health crises across the European Union, and in the U.K., the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has created a new delivery plan that benefits from a more agile approval process instituted during the pandemic.

The report finds technology innovations such as improved connectivity, mobile enablement, IoT and AI have changed the MedTech landscape. Medical devices are now an integrated element of the overall data lifecycle, and MedTech companies are looking for providers that offer not only innovation in devices themselves, but also expertise in regulations, cybersecurity and quality and compliance.

The pharmacovigilance and regulatory affairs functions, both areas of technological innovation prior to the pandemic, continue to drive demand for increasingly sophisticated digital services. Leading providers in this space demonstrate strength in using AI, natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning to capture and process information from unstructured data. Providers’ regulatory affairs offerings, meanwhile, use technology to collect and disseminate regulatory intelligence to support smart filings, and to maintain and report on quality and compliance.

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In addition, collaborations between traditional IT providers and contract research organizations (CROs), which often include representation from industry and academia, continue to grow as the leading providers in these areas leverage their combined expertise, the report says. The emphasis on improving patient outcomes by combining deep domain expertise with digital enablers is seen among leading providers.

The increased reliance on digital technologies is associated with other trends across the industry, the report says. There is growing demand for cloud services to support the needs of a growing remote workforce and the need for additional computing power. Changing business needs have also elevated the demand for software-as-a-service solutions that can turn large volumes of data into business intelligence.

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens™ Life Sciences Digital Services Report for Europe evaluates the capabilities of 22 providers across two quadrants: MedTech Digital Transformation Services and Pharmacovigilance and Regulatory Affairs Digital Transformation Services.

The report names Capgemini, Cognizant, TCS and Wipro as Leaders in both quadrants and Atos, HARMAN, LTTS and PPD as Leaders in one quadrant.

In addition, HCL and Tech Mahindra were named Rising Stars—companies with “promising portfolios” and “high future potential” by ISG’s definition—in one quadrant.

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