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Intelligent Capture is the secret weapon Life Sciences companies need

In its 2021 state of the industry report, the Association of Intelligent Information Management (AIIM) found that nearly half its members rated their digital transformation as ‘poor’ or ‘needs improvement.’ We all want to use the latest digital technologies, such as AI and IoT, but there’s an elephant in the room: We’ve yet to solve what happens at the very start of any related processes. That’s where intelligent capture technology comes in. And there’s good reason for Life Sciences companies to take notice now.

I recently heard a story about a company that undertook a digital transformation initiative and discovered it had more than three kilometers of filing cabinets. I wonder just how unusual that is, given that Life Sciences and pharma industries spent $18.8 billion on printing in 2021 – that is nearly double the next sector (which happens to be healthcare).

They say if you give an infinite amount of monkeys an infinite number of typewriters, they will eventually reproduce the works of Shakespeare. If you swap the typewriters for scanners and OCR, how long will it take them to digitize the Life Sciences industry? But then, what do you do with all this digital information? Where should you put it? How do you relate it to the enterprise applications and business processes that need rely on it?

But let’s not just point the finger at the use of paper. The Life Sciences sector – like every other – has also built up digital information siloes throughout the organization. Years of operations, growth, and acquisition has led to some large global companies having literally thousands of different instances of their core enterprise applications such as ERP, CRM, PLM, or MES. Each has its own data in its own format and probably stacked in its own server racks.

Enter information capture … stage left

I don’t think I am giving away any trade secrets here: Digital transformation will fail to meet its objectives if organizations can’t release the value locked in all this information. Without unlocking that value, the dream of being a data-driven organization will remain just that.

“The ability to intelligently capture this information in a consistent way and integrate it into automated business processes is a core element in digital transformation,” says AIIM. Its research found 68% of companies say their focus on information capture has shifted from something that is often done after the fact (for archiving purposes) to something that is done much closer to the point of information creation (for process improvement and transformation).

Clinical data intelligence … and beyond

The key to information capture is, of course, the intelligence you can apply. Intelligent capture automates content ingestion and speeds up the routing of information. It allows a company to efficiently capture data from all available sources and add classification and categorization so it can be effectively stored, searched, and retrieved by any authorized user – inside or outside the organization. It forms a key part of the capabilities within OpenText™ Clinical Data Intelligence for Life Sciences.

However, what is true for clinical departments? is equally true for R&D, operations, manufacturing, and supply chain. For example, decades of IP (Intellectual Property) and knowledge are currently stuffed into cabinets packed with paper-based scientific notebooks. Intelligent capture can identify and ingest this data to gain full value from Electronic Lab Notebooks.

In operations, many invoices are still received by paper fax and email. Intelligent capture makes it easy to include this information within digital workflows to allow manufacturers to take advantage of capabilities such as Vendor Invoice Management. The same is true for doctors ordering lab work where introducing digital workflows increases efficiency and enables greater analysis of the data. Finally, paper-based quality control when receiving active pharmaceutical ingredients from suppliers can be replaced by automating the flow of documentation from suppliers into internal quality systems.

These are just some reasons why intelligent capture must top the priority list of tools needed to simplify and accelerate your digital transformation journey.

Ferdi Steinmann

Nearly 25 years of experience in driving strategy & commercialization efforts in Biotech & Pharma with an exclusive focus in Life Sciences (LS) strategic planning and industry marketing efforts for enterprise software solutions. Today I am responsible for the LS global industry strategy development at OpenText. I am energized by strategies that deliver on their promises

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