Continuous Manufacturing in the Pharmaceutical Industry, a disruptive trend or a logical transformation? (1 of 10)

This article is the first one of a series of ten (1 of 10) focusing on modern manufacturing in the pharmaceutical industry with special attention to automation.

Continuous manufacturing is heralding a transformative shift in the pharmaceutical industry, transcending the conventional batch production processes to enhance efficiency and product quality. This innovative approach involves an uninterrupted production flow, enabling raw materials to be incessantly processed into finished products. A prime advantage is the significant reduction in manufacturing times, optimizing productivity and reducing time-to-market for essential medications.

Adopting continuous manufacturing enables pharmaceutical companies to achieve consistent product quality. By integrating real-time monitoring and control, companies can detect and rectify deviations promptly, ensuring optimal product quality and mitigating risks associated with product recalls. This continuous approach also enhances the flexibility and scalability of production processes, accommodating the dynamic needs of the pharmaceutical market.

One of the salient advantages of continuous manufacturing is the reduction of production costs. The incessant process reduces the overall footprint, operational expenses and the resources required, enabling cost-effective drug production. Additionally, continuous manufacturing aligns with sustainability goals by minimizing waste generation and energy consumption, thereby fostering environmentally friendly pharmaceutical production.

The seamless integration of Information Technology (IT) is pivotal for maximizing the benefits of continuous manufacturing. Advanced IT systems facilitate real-time data acquisition and analysis, enabling pharmaceutical manufacturers to maintain stringent quality controls and comply with regulatory standards. The assimilation of robust IT infrastructures ensures the uninterrupted flow and accuracy of information, indispensable for optimizing production processes and making informed decisions swiftly.

Furthermore, the implementation of continuous manufacturing necessitates sophisticated automation technologies. Automation ensures precision and repeatability in production processes, mitigating human errors and enhancing the reliability of drug production. IT solutions integrating Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) can optimize process parameters automatically, adapt to varying conditions, and anticipate potential disruptions, ensuring uninterrupted production.

The evolution towards continuous manufacturing also requires extensive modifications in enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. Enhanced ERP systems are crucial for managing supply chains effectively, coordinating production schedules, and optimizing inventory levels in real-time. They help in attaining seamless integration between production processes and logistical operations, ensuring the availability of essential pharmaceuticals to meet global demands.

Moreover, IT plays a crucial role in securing intellectual property and sensitive production data. Implementing robust cybersecurity measures is essential to protect proprietary information and to ensure the integrity and confidentiality of production data, mitigating the risks of cyber threats and unauthorized access. Monitoring is no longer the question, but a must!

In conclusion, continuous manufacturing is revolutionizing the pharmaceutical industry by enhancing efficiency, reducing costs, and ensuring consistent product quality. The integration of advanced IT and automation technologies is essential to reap the benefits of this innovative manufacturing approach. It ensures real-time monitoring, enhances data integrity, facilitates compliance with regulatory standards, and secures sensitive information, thereby paving the way for a more resilient and sustainable pharmaceutical industry in the future.

Stay tuned and look for the next article (2 of 10) on Pharmaceutical Industry 4.0: Embracing Automation and Data Exchange – Exploration of the integration of automation, IoT, and data exchange in manufacturing processes.

Why is it important to have your house in order before starting your digital transformation? (2 of 5)

This question is the topic of a series of articles in the coming weeks around the theme of having your “House in Order”. 

Last week we published the first version with a more general introduction. This time we will go further into detail and explain why the old tenet “First organize, then Automate” is still very valid.

Not organizing your scope of automation will lead to automating inefficiencies and sometimes even chaos. This will not bring value to the company and will only lead to disappointment and often to more cost.

But why is this the case? And for what reasons is organizing first a clever idea?

To answer these questions, we must look at the considerations that individuals and organizations often use to justify automation projects:

  • “Yes, we have a lot of inefficiencies, but it is a promising idea to automate anyway. We will work out our way in the project and get a positive outcome”
  • “We have never been well organized in our company and still doing automation projects with success, so why should we organize first and lose time?”
  • “Yes, we have chaos now, that’s why we want to automate!”

The common thing about these statements is that individuals and organizations overestimate their own capabilities. They expect something positive if they put in enough effort.

Starting an automation project with this mindset makes it very likely that the project will take more time, resources and budget than anticipated. It is also very likely that the same results could have been obtained with a lot less time, resources and budget if first some proper scoping and organizing had been done.

The first reason for organizing upfront is that organizing is more than half the job. The remainder is automating. Organizing less upfront will result in more automation work and automation of inefficiencies. If you want to organize afterwards, it is likely that there is a larger scope because inefficiencies have been automated and there is more data, more work involved. In addition, it will lead to rework in the automation itself.

A second reason for organizing upfront is better Change Management. For every change, it helps if you can create or demonstrate a proper sense of urgency. If you take sufficient time to organize, you also lay the foundation for change acceptance. The automated solution that comes along with the change will then be accepted more easily.

A third reason is related to the second one. If you start to automate without proper organizing and Change Management, you automatically use the IT solution to drive the change. As most changes also cause resistance, this can create its own problems: people will debate the system, but not the underlying reasons for change. These debates often do not end well.

Conclusion: If you want to be effective and agile with your automation projects, organize well prior to automation. Have your house in order! It will save you time and effort, while you increase the chance that the automated solution is better accepted by your people.

Q7 Consulting is often involved in automation projects where having your “House in Order” is the “Question behind the Question”. We can help you to make your automation projects more effective. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the next articles regarding “House in Order”.

Why is it important to have your house in order before starting your digital transformation? (1 of 5)

This question is the topic of a series of articles in the coming weeks around the theme of having your “House in Order”.

Digital Transformation is about the integration of digital technology into all areas of a business, fundamentally changing how you operate and deliver value to customers.  

There are good examples of successful digital transformations, such as online stores where you can do your shopping simply from home and your order is delivered the next day or even the same day, well announced with messages regarding delivery date/time. This has fundamentally changed the way we do shopping.

When businesses want to embark on the boat called “Digital Transformation”, they often forget that it is important, even imperative, to have their house in order. Starting Digital Transformation projects without having their house in order don´t bring value, in many occasions costs will only go up.

Why is it so important to have your house in order?

It is a prerequisite for success. In other words, if you as a company want to fundamentally change how you operate, be well prepared. If your business processes are not in order or your IT systems are not up to date, it is extremely difficult to make a fundamental impact.

Why is this?

The reason is often quite simple: if the house is not in order, a lot of time is wasted on things that seem important but are not important at all. This draws valuable resources that could also be spent on preparing yourself for the unexpected.

If you don’t have your house in order, unexpected events might put a lot of stress on your company, for which you might not be prepared. This can lead to slow progress in projects, lower quality products, dissatisfied customers or worse.

Q7 Consulting often gets questions from customers regarding IT Systems that don’t perform well, IT departments that do not perform well, security issues etc. Often, the question behind the question has to do with having the house in order.

Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the next articles regarding “House in Order”.

Change Management Interview: Anna Khodosevich

At Q7 Consulting, we are aware that Change happens faster and more frequently than ever. As a result, Change Management and Leadership within organizations are essential pillars for success.

The people we interview are from all around the world, have outstanding professional trajectories and attained success within their roles. They have essential leadership traits, are influential within their organizations and have experience implementing and managing Change.

In this tenth episode of our new series, we interview Anna Khodosevich, a Senior Scientific Consultant and Strategic Research Support Coordinator at Drug Design and Pharmacology sector.

Please find below the main questions addressed in our interview with Anna Khodosevich and her answers to the same.

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Change Management Interview: Judy Ang

At Q7 Consulting, we are aware that Change happens faster and more frequently than ever. As a result, Change Management and Leadership within organizations are essential pillars for success.

The people we interview are from all around the world, have outstanding professional trajectories and attained success within their roles. They have essential leadership traits, are influential within their organizations and have experience implementing and managing Change.

In this ninth episode of our new series, we interview Judy Ang, independent Accounting and Finance Consultant with great experience leading teams in Singapore, applying her knowledge in accounting and finance to effectively execute Change in organizations.

Please find below the main questions addressed in our interview with Judy Ang and her answers to the same.

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Virtual Office: Microsoft Teams

In the article Virtual Office: Which platform is for you? we identified three main digital collaboration platforms: Google Workspace, Workplace by facebook and Microsoft Teams. In this article we will talk about Microsoft Teams, its main features and how Q7 Consulting can help you implement a set of guidelines to collaborate successfully.

Many people and organizations use Microsoft Teams strictly for videoconferencing and chat, two very important features that amount to about 25% of what Microsoft’s platform can do for you.

Q7 Consulting can help you unleash your organization’s potential to plan, manage & execute projects, communicate & collaborate seamlessly, organize cloud storage and much more by using one platform: Microsoft Teams. But first, let’s look at a preview of some of the platform’s main features.

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Change Management Interview: Carlos Alberto Arnaud Gil

At Q7 Consulting, we are aware that we live in uncertain times, and that Change management and leadership are now more than ever essential to the success of organizations.

The people we interview are from around the world and have exemplary career paths. All of them have achieved success within their roles, have essential leadership traits, are influential within their organizations, and have experience implementing and managing Change.

In this eighth episode of our new series, we interview Carlos Alberto Arnaud Gil, Psychiatrist, Professor, Lecturer and Coordinator of the Mexican Psychiatric Association in Nuevo León. He will give us a different perspective on Change management and leadership, which is not much talked about but is extremely important: mental health.

Below are the questions addressed in our interview with Carlos Alberto Arnaud Gil.

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Virtual Office: Which platform is for you?

Digital Transformation implies Change. This Change is necessary when organizations seek to be competitive in their industries and markets but also to overcome day-to-day obstacles. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced Change on organizations and pushed some to the brink of survival, scrambling to find new ways to create value.

In many countries, government measures and consequently company initiatives prevented people from attending physical offices or restricted face-to-face collaboration to a certain degree. These circumstances enabled many solutions, services and products to arise and tackle newfound challenges. One of these challenges is team collaboration in a seamless and efficient manner.

In this article we tackle the platforms existing today enabling teams to collaborate remotely. Do they boost your productivity and fit your organizational culture? Which one to choose?

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Change Management Interview: M. Kumaresan

At Q7 Consulting, we are aware that we live in times of uncertainty and now more than ever Change Management and Leadership within organizations are essential concepts for success.

The people we interview are from all around the world, have outstanding professional trajectories and attained success within their roles. They have essential leadership traits, are influential within their organizations and have experience implementing and managing Change.

In this seventh episode of our new series, we interview M. Kumaresan, Head of Information Technology at Unichem Laboratories Limited who provides deep insight on planning and executing Change.

Please find below the main questions addressed in our interview with M. Kumaresan with some examples embedded in the answers.

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Change Management Interview: Paul Maya

At Q7 Consulting, we are aware that we live in times of uncertainty, and now more than ever Change Management and Leadership within organizations are essential concepts for success.

The people we interview are from all over the world, have outstanding career paths, have achieved success within their roles, have essential leadership traits, are influential within their organizations and have experience in implementing and managing Change.

In this sixth episode of our new series, we interviewed Paul Maya, CEO of Atos Mexico – North America who has more than 30 years of experience in the areas of Strategic Planning, Startups, Business Development, Operations and Information Technologies, with various roles and projects including business software design and development for manufacturing, transportation and retail industries. Paul has carried out the planning and startup of several large-scale Technology Centers in Mexico and South America, including all areas of technology for mission-critical infrastructure support and software development. He has also been responsible for the implementation of ISO certifications and compliance programs for different industries.

Please find below the questions and answers addressed in our interview with Paul Maya.

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