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The analytics academy: Bridging the gap between human and artificial intelligence

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The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the defining business opportunities for leaders today. Closely associated with it: the challenge of creating an organization that can rise to that opportunity and exploit the potential of AI at scale. Meeting this challenge requires organizations to prepare their leaders, business staff, analytics teams, and end users to work and think in new ways--not only by helping these cohorts understand how to tap into AI effectively, but also by teaching them to embrace data exploration, agile development, and interdisciplinary teamwork. Often, companies use an ad hoc approach to their talent-building efforts. They hire new workers equipped with these skills in spurts and rely on online-learning platforms, universities, and executive-level programs to train existing employees.


The importance of talent and culture in tech-enabled transformations

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The professionals with the jobs of carrying out, adopting, and sustaining tech-enabled transformations deserve as much attention as the technological solutions they create and oversee. When an organization manages both its talent and culture effectively, the interplay between them can create a virtuous cycle: attracting talent, sparking innovation, and creating impact. However, transforming organizations' culture and talent in a tech-enabled transformation is often more challenging than tackling the technical elements. Creating the right talent and culture for a tech-enabled transformation is not easy. Respondents to a McKinsey survey of global executives said that culture and talent occupy two of the top three slots for the most significant challenges to tech-enabled transformations (Exhibit 1). 1 1.


Fusing business and technology strategies to cocreate value

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As technology becomes the catalyst for business strategy and transformation, the lines between business and technology functions are blurring and the expectations of IT are shifting, leading many organizations to reimagine the role of technology and rethink traditional operating models and organizational structures. This CIO Insider presents a new way for unifying business and technology objectives to help enable business and technology functions to more effectively collaborate, innovate, and cocreate new sources of value. As the pace, scale, and impact of technological innovation and disruption have exponentially escalated, technology has become a primary influence on business strategy, strategic choices, and value-creation models. Harnessing and managing these five forces--one of today's most pressing business issues--can be incompatible with IT's traditional role of ensuring operational excellence and executing technology-enabled business objectives. Historically, business and technology functions were separate, which often reduced cross-functional collaboration and led to siloed execution, delayed projects, and inflexible processes. Businesses often defined strategic objectives and developed separate supporting technology strategies.


Digital R&D

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Digital technologies can transform how companies approach clinical development by incorporating valuable insights from multiple sources of data, radically improving the patient experience, enhancing clinical trial productivity, and increasing the amount and quality of data collected in trials. But where is the industry in adopting these transformative technologies? We interviewed 43 leaders across the clinical development ecosystem to understand the current level of adoption of digital technologies and how it can be accelerated. We found that the industry has been slow to digitize its clinical development processes, and that digital adoption varies widely. Even the most advanced organizations are simply piloting several technologies in different areas of clinical development, focusing on piecemeal solutions or new tools to support the existing process. Our research and client experience suggest that digital transformation is a complex, resource-intensive, and lengthy undertaking. But the rewards can be significant: Early adopters can benefit from better access to and engagement with patients, deeper insights, and faster cycle times for products in development. Many in our study expressed a desire to be fast followers, but given the complexity of operationalizing a digital strategy, the reality is that undue delay could put organizations at a competitive disadvantage. At the same time, our research also indicates that biopharma companies and contract research organizations (CROs) will need to overcome several challenges to realize the potential of digital in clinical development: immature data infrastructure and analytics, regulatory considerations, and internal organizational and cultural barriers. Biopharma companies should consider building updated data infrastructure and governance, engaging early with regulators to discuss new technologies, and developing a measured approach to evaluating and implementing technologies within their organizations. CROs can enable this change by advancing interoperable digital platforms and vetting promising technology applications. Cross-industry consortia could help advance the industry as a whole by offering a forum to share early successes and supporting the development of standards. The time to act is now.


The pursuit of excellence in new-drug development

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We are living in a time of enormous scientific innovation and promise for improved human health. Our understanding of biology is expanding enormously alongside increased identification of novel targets and their associated modalities. Still, drug-development costs and timelines continue to rise, and the likelihood of success continues to fall. Collectively, the top 20 pharmaceutical companies spend approximately $60 billion on drug development each year, and the estimated average cost of bringing a drug to market (including drug failures) is now $2.6 billion--a 140 percent increase in the past ten years. 1 1. We believe the time is right for a true step change in drug development.