Digitization has transformed both our domestic and commercial lives, and the rapid change we have seen since the introduction of the internet in the 1980s has been coined by Klaus Schwab as ‘the fourth industrial revolution’ in his book of the same name.
With the fourth revolution heralding large-scale digital connectivity across artificial intelligence learning systems and networks, the ability to connect digitally and transfer data across complex networks is fundamentally important to the pharmaceutical industry. The complexity of data transactions and requirements, particularly in the supply chain, is immense. The development, production, and transfer of drugs and therapeutic treatments rely on a complex supply chain, involving multiple interactions and partnerships, to ensure that therapeutic products are supplied, manufactured, and distributed safely, efficiently, and effectively.
Whilst biomanufacturers already use electronic data to analyze and improve elements of their processes, for a more complete understanding of the process, electronic data needs to be exchanged through the entire supply chain. Improving real-time data exchange can benefit the inbound supply chain in many ways, from improving accuracy, reducing costs, and maximizing safety, reliability, and efficiency to speeding up drug production, ensuring supply and simplifying processes.
BioPhorum is working with the biomanufacturing and supplier communities to progress the adoption of electronic data exchange (EDE) to enable these improvements and deliver an efficient, and effective drug production and global supply. The BioPhorum EDE workstream set out to establish the baseline for EDE across participating members and understand how many were implementing the ASTM E3077-17 standard. Survey questions were asked about:
1. How suppliers and biomanufacturers were working with EDE for raw materials across their inbound supply chain.
2. Whether they were using the ASTM standard and, if so, its application and value to their company. *
3. Insights for improving EDE across the sector.
The EDE baseline survey gives a good insight into the state of EDE across the inbound supply chain. With over 80% of respondents either not using or only partially using EDE for raw materials, BioPhorum wants to facilitate the acceleration towards adoption and support piloting of EDE implementation and the ASTM E3077-17 standard across biomanufacturing and supplier partnerships. We are also developing an EDE digital maturity model, to support wider learning and implementation of the practical steps in the EDE partnership journey from contemplation to mastery. If you are currently interested in or working on an EDE project within your inbound supply chain and would like to get involved, please contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
* The ASTM standard sets out mandatory and optional data fields that any supplier of raw materials should provide to a biomanufacturer. It was developed to improve, align, and simplify data communication across the inbound supply chain to support and facilitate faster data exchange.