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How the Sinequa Insight Engine Streamlines Global Biopharma Product Development

Posted by Charlotte Foglia

global biopharma product development

Enterprise Search Makes It Faster and Easier to Do Important Work

The worldwide rush to develop a COVID-19 vaccine has been front-page news for months. The media has shined a light on just how complex it is to develop new vaccines, drugs, and other healthcare products.

To “discover” a new drug requires extensive work. Scientists must search among thousands of compounds for promising new candidates, spend one to five years testing molecules, conduct clinical trials and secure regulatory approval before taking products to market.

Drug development costs can soar up to $1 billion during the ultimately 10- to 15-year process, not counting marketing costs. Long development cycles and high costs make it ever-more important that new drugs are a hit.

So, drug research is obviously cutting-edge work. Yet, surprisingly, biopharmaceutical companies struggle with common challenges that other companies face. These challenges include finding the latest information, locating experts, and increasing the productivity of staff.

This was the situation a global biopharmaceutical leader faced. Tens of thousands of employees search for information every day to make strategic decisions and execute their responsibilities in a complex industry.

However, three years ago, the company was using an outdated SharePoint site with limited search capabilities. Staff used simple keywords for search, with no guarantees they were accessing the most relevant content.

Fortunately, the solution engineering lead for the company’s products and solutions group knew this situation needed to change. He began actively searching for a solution.

How a biopharmaceutical leader is transforming enterprise search

Sinequa’s enterprise search platform is helping a biopharmaceutical company dramatically speed up search. The company’s results include:

  • Improving information findability and accuracy by 9X
  • Increasing staff information search efficiency by 5%
  • Indexing 500M documents for search

Implementing enterprise search capabilities globally

Internal business customers had asked the solution engineering leader for an enterprise search engine with robust capabilities. They wanted to automatically classify and tag data, provide better indexing and filtering, and streamline the integration of new data sources.

The solution engineering lead knew that providing better enterprise search capabilities would help deliver a better user experience that would make staff more productive, ultimately streamlining global product development. In addition, enterprise search would contribute to the firm’s goals of creating a digital workplace, empowering teams to collaborate securely across initiatives, devices, and locations.

After a careful vendor vetting process, the solution engineering lead implemented the Sinequa Insight Engine across the company in 2019.

With more than 200 connectors, the Sinequa platform can rapidly index a wide array of data sources without custom work, making it easy and fast for staff to get the content they need. Multiple filters enable users to apply search criteria, while weighted search results use query intent to surface highly relevant content. Results are displayed in a simple, clean interface that is easy to use.

Mobile users can also download the enterprise search app in the company’s app store for use on their devices. Mobile search enables employees to work when and how they want to.

The Sinequa intelligent search platform was so effective that the solution engineering lead had to add a security message to the search interface. The message assures users that they are only viewing information they are authorized to access. Employees were finding so much more content with the Sinequa Insight Engine that they worried that they were violating access privileges.

Increasing staff productivity with fast, easy information access

With the new platform, the biopharmaceutical company experienced a 9X improvement in information findability and accuracy.

That means high-value staff such as drug researchers can locate fellow experts easily. They also don’t spend excessive time searching for content such as research reports and can quickly validate whether the information they find is accurate, up-to-date, and comprehensive. Drug researchers now have more time for important work such as testing compounds, running trials, and addressing regulatory requirements

The Sinequa Insight Engine also helps other employees across myriad business functions. Instead of spending an hour or more per day searching for content, staff can focus on meaningful work. That means more time for improving the employee or customer experience, developing digital products and services, and streamlining operations.

Whether you’re a marketer searching for past campaign results, an HR professional looking for thought leaders on a particular topic, or an operations professional streamlining logistics processes, Sinequa Insight Engine can help you drive quickly to insight, so that you can focus on the task at hand.

The Sinequa platform uses natural language processing (NLP), artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning (ML), getting smarter all the time. Speeding access to the best results helps companies like this biopharmaceutical leader match pace with market developments and consumer trends by accessing, organizing, and interpreting new content faster than competitors.

Empowering biostatisticians to improve clinical trial design

Given its success with enterprise search, the biopharmaceutical company has extended the Sinequa Insight Engine to accomplish another major imperative.

When it comes to global product development search, historically, the company’s biostatisticians have only been able to search the metadata of vast SAS data sets. However, a customized search application based on the Sinequa Insight Engine is now empowering these skilled experts to conduct full text searching across millions of rows of these data sets.

As an example, biostatisticians can query the platform to retrieve data only on patients over age 80 in the U.S. with an A+ blood type and a certain comorbidity. Users can retrieve this data in hours, rather than days, speeding decision making.

With the ability to search hundreds of criteria per patient, the biopharmaceutical leader will be able to develop smarter, evidence-driven protocols. Staff can use these tools to improve clinical trial design and recruitment and increase the likelihood of drug launch success.

Accelerating drug development to improve consumer health

Worldwide, the demand for new drugs and healthcare products is increasing. The average global life expectancy is now more than 72 years.

The good news is that individuals can manage chronic health conditions and diseases effectively with access to better drugs and treatment protocols. It’s not uncommon for individuals to live successfully with multiple conditions, called comorbidities. Meanwhile, diseases that would have previously meant a death sentence can now be better treated, providing individuals with years of additional life.

All of these trends are creating a need for more innovative medications. As the biopharmaceutical company has demonstrated with its broad-based drug portfolio and partnerships, it is more than capable of leading the way. By spurring product development with the Sinequa Insight Engine, the company’s staff will provide consumers with a wider range of better medications, helping them live healthier lives.

Speeding product development with enterprise search has never been easier.

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