21 Nov Life Sciences PA CRO & CMO Summit: Key Takeaways
The Life Sciences PA 2017 CRO & CMO Summit was held on Friday, November 17 at West Pharmaceutical Services in Exton, PA. The Summit was a half-day program designed specifically for those planning and conducting clinical trials and those seeking advice for selecting outsourced providers. As a service provider that works closely with the life sciences industry, this was a great opportunity for Navigate to connect with the regional life sciences community and learn more about how to effectively partner with companies in the industry.
The event kicked off with a keynote speech given by Valarie Higgins, President and Managing Director at Almac Clinical Technologies. Valarie provided powerful insight on how to form strategic partnerships and successfully work with procurement departments to demonstrate the value of your services.
The event also featured a panel discussion with three accomplished leaders in the industry, which I was asked to moderate:
– Maria Fagan, CEO, Regulatory & Quality Solutions
– Karen Flynn, Senior Vice President & Chief Commercial Officer, West Pharmaceutical Services
– Peggy Murray, Sr. Director Clinical Monitoring at INC Research/inVentiv Health
During the session, the panelists discussed their industry experience and shared anecdotes from when they were pushed outside of their comfort zones to reach the highest potential in their careers. One key takeaway was to find a strong advocate or mentor to help you achieve your career goals.
They also discussed how to broach difficult conversations around risk, scope, budget, etc. and still maintain a strong and trusting relationship, whether you are a service provider or a purchaser. Key takeaways included:
1. It is critical for both parties to define roles and responsibilities, establish boundaries, and develop risk mitigation plans during the earliest phase of a project.
2. With the term “innovation” being overused these days, it is easy for purchasers to expect huge, disruptive ideas from their providers; however, a small change that drives a significant impact could also be “innovative” and game changing. Service providers and purchasers need to communicate and be on the same page with how they define and measure “innovation.”
3. Change management should always be a component of service delivery. When helping a purchaser with patient enrollment, data management, or even with manufacturing a new device or product, the service provider should partner with the purchaser to promote adoption of the change. Together, they should establish and execute a plan to advise, inform, engage, and train impacted stakeholders to sustain the change that is being implemented. This can help strengthen the relationship between a service provider and purchaser and ensure the success of their initiative.
As we head into 2018, I suggest that both service providers and purchasers consider these takeaways and how they can put them into action in the next year. If you’re looking for similar insight into the industry, consider attending a future event with Life Sciences PA – I hope to see you there!