As our world spins toward the highly anticipated “new normal,” pharma and related industry conferences in the last few months have shown us that the new normal will be anything but business as usual.  Instead, we are witnessing an accelerated adoption of advanced new technologies that many of us had previously associated with the IT or tech industries.

So, how did this come about?  Out of necessity during the pandemic, many pharma companies were forced to early-adopt cutting-edge technologies to both ensure the development of new vaccines and to prevent global shortages of other products that were at significant risk due to global supply chain challenges.  This forward thinking by many companies and their leaders helped propel digitization to new heights.  Moreover, the duration of the pandemic and this new digital realization have given many companies the time to develop strategies of digitization for use in our future facilities, biosystems, and company cultures.  If you haven’t been aware of the challenges and advances, then it is time to get onboard or be left behind.

Has your company yet given thought to data lakes, AI, machine learning, IoT, robotics, quantum computing, or strategies incorporating one or more of these digitized technologies?  If your company is not engaged in the development of digital technology strategies for logistics/supply chain, pharmaceutical operations, or new facilities, then please ask yourself whether it is time to get started.  It is not too late, but the time to begin is now.  Many companies are already developing their data lakes as an important first step in anticipation of these technologies maturing and become more pervasive in our industry.  For those of you unfamiliar with the term, a data lake is a place where information critical to your business or processes is identified and then stored in a metaphorical lake.  Some things to ponder:

  1. Is your organization looking at technologies of the future?
  2. Are you considering the development of a data lake for critical process/lab/business parameters?
  3. Are your teams looking at Pharma 4.0 or other future states for building manufacturing facilities?


The future of us begins now!  Don’t wait for technology to overtake you – embrace it now so you will be prepared for the future and not be left behind.