Creating an Agile Environment to Support Sustainable Growth

Roadmap to induce agility to pharma industry

  • Agile Transformation Plan: Pharma companies need a systematic agility culture percolating from the desk of CEO, COO, CFO, CIO to across the organisation to all individuals. The industry is very rigid and has tremendous misconception and phobia for Agile Way of Woking (AWOW).
  • Need of visionary agile leaders to set up and nourish agile environment at org level across the organisation till the last person in the hierarchy. Person with visionary mindset is needed not just an agile project manager. There are thousands of agile project manager we have in IT but very few has visionary eye site. Very few has enterprise level experience of implementing agile at org level. Moreover, the pharma industry needs agile leader who can understand their business and has experience of implementing enterprise level project in agile way. Preferably a pharma graduate who knows the pharma operations like R&D, regulatory affairs and manufacturing with enterprise level agile project implementation experience from IT is the right person.
  • Transparency, sharing and discouraging information silos.
  • Collaborative approach than solitary.
  • Induce empathy traits among the employee for problem solving.
  • Design systematic customised organisation specific agile framework and integrate to function specific agile plan like R&D, regulatory, operations, sales & marketing, finance & procurement etc.
  • Encourage brain storming interactive discussion with respect to issues, concerns, process within the teams, inter-department and outside systems like drug approval authorities etc. on daily basis or as appropriate.
  • Delegating powers to the team to take decision and creating sense of ownership and accountability for the work items in their bucket.
  • Inducing right attitude for Accepting “New Way Of Working” (NWOW), “New Way Of Thinking” (NWOT) culture. Revisit the processes for process improvisation and discover trade off for optimal goal objectives.
  • Comprehensive training plan on agile methodology to render training, workshops to facilitate the agile culture on regular basis.
  • Appoint inhouse CXO level panel to create a war room for addressing the concern and issues pertain to filing, registering the molecules to fast track or to achieve optimal TAT in response by FDA and respective country specific drug approval authority.
  • Automation and cutting age technology like AI and ML have bigger role to play for the success of agile framework. The AI and bots will replace monotonous repetitive work with minimum human intervention and decision making will be easier and more automated.

“One thing is clear and obvious that pharma industry must think seriously on AWOW and there is no way out. It is now or never. The cost and time benefits must be perceived in right perspective by implementing agile. Novartis perceived the benefits and are the early mover on implementing agile framework. The trend will be shortly picked up by couple of more companies soon however majority are still spectator standing on the river bank and hesitate to jump in the main stream. Rigid mindset pulling the people back and are reluctant for new change however day is near that people willing or by force to accept the change.

Hope the discussion was an eye opener who attended the Summit and I feel such more events we need to facilitate the acceptance of AWOW among the pharma world. – Mr. Milind WakaskarAgile Coach & Sr. Program Manager L&T Infotech Ltd

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