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How API-led modernization can transform research and development at pharmaceutical companies

Akshay Kumar

According to MuleSoft’s annual Connectivity Benchmark Report, 89% of IT leaders say data silos are an obstacle to digital transformation, and pharmaceutical companies are no strangers to this issue. In the digital era, they have a range of new data-driven challenges to meet as they strive to bring new drugs to market faster than ever before. Given the growing complexity of clinical trials with increasingly diverse stakeholders, the release of new clinical-trial applications that generate ever-increasing amounts of data, and heightening data-privacy concerns, it’s critical that pharmaceutical companies have the technology to connect and manage all of the data and streamline their R&D efforts.

APIs are one key way to do this. APIs make it possible to connect data across multiple sources and eliminate data silos via modern integration. However, in many cases, pharmaceutical companies rely on legacy systems that aren’t API-enabled. Rather, data is connected via point-to-point integrations, which means connections are slow and every project requires new code. With API-led integration, on the other hand, pharmaceutical companies are able to easily unlock data from their systems, make connections via purposeful and reusable services, and, ultimately, streamline the process of bringing drugs to market.

Because of this, those companies are able to properly leverage APIs to connect their data and improve the process of getting new drugs to market, and move the industry forward. Here are a few examples of how we’ve helped pharmaceutical companies take advantage of API-led modernization to streamline research and development.

Reducing time-to-market. A global leader in diabetes care split from its parent company and needed new systems to support its business. Years of existing data needed to be transferred to the new company and, at the same time, new ERP and product lifecycle management systems needed to be configured and integrated. By integrating everything via a cloud-based API solution, the company significantly increased efficiency and reduced cycle times by 20 percent to get to market more quickly.

Orchestrating across multiple business units. A global pharmaceutical company strived to bring new drugs to market more quickly and efficiently. Because multiple business units were involved in the R&D process, the IT department decided to leverage API-led integration to create an application network connecting information and capabilities across each unit. Not only did this forge stronger collaboration between different stakeholders, but it also promoted reuse and eliminated unnecessary rework.

Ensuring security. A multinational pharmaceutical company with a hybrid cloud environment was facing challenges due to tightening security and privacy considerations. By shifting to an API-first strategy, the company was better able to manage regulatory requirements and keep sensitive data on premises while taking advantage of cloud-based capabilities. Not only did this help the company ensure compliance with regulations, it also helped the company realize cost and time savings of 20 percent.

Many pharmaceutical companies need to modernize their landscapes to fully enable their business on APIs, whether this means repackaging services to make them more consumable by the business or rearchitecting underlying application code.

Capgemini has worked with pharmaceutical companies of all types to help them modernize and harness the power of API-led connectivity with MuleSoft, a provider of integration software. For more information about API-led modernization, visit our web page or reach out.