Pharmaceutical manufacturing has traditionally relied on centralized facilities for mass pharmaceutical production and distribution. As good as this method is, it may be limited when looking at the larger industry trends. This method guarantees product quality and consistency, but its rigidity prevents new manufacturing methods that might improve efficiency and supply chain resilience from being developed.
Manufacturers employing agile pharma production techniques can adapt to patient demands on the fly and may offer a solution to facilitate timely access to critical medicines and treatments. In this article, we will discuss agile manufacturing and its advantages.
What is Agile Manufacturing?
Agile manufacturing is responding promptly to and adapting to the various demands and needs of customers in the market.
In the pharmaceutical and life science industries, agile manufacturing is the method of providing individualized drugs and personalized medicine to customers on time.
For GMP manufacturing for treatments, cell & gene therapies, biotech, or medical devices, agile operations can deliver the right treatments to the right patient on time. With developments in personalized medicine, agile manufacturing ensures the highest quality of patient outcomes.
Advantages of Agile Manufacturing in Pharmaceutical Companies
Pharmaceutical production and manufacturing have to catch up with the development of new medicines and therapies. Demands to convert traditional facilities into new, capable of quickly producing new treatments is a massive challenge. Agile manufacturing enables this approach, in a safe and efficacious manner. Therefore, we shall discuss how to adopt an agile approach to manufacturing.
1. An Efficient R&D Department
Creating an agile team in this new age of treatment and therapies is crucial to patient outcomes. This holds true across many areas of manufacturing, including R&D, quality, operations, maintenance, business, facilities, and so on. Although teams are becoming leaner, new technologies are unlocking efficiency gains, to improve manufacturing performance, in less time, without sacrificing quality. Smaller batches mean that a lighter footprint is required for manufacturing. As such, the adoption of light touch technologies can improve the operation’s efficiency, without the challenges found in traditional commercial manufacturing.
2. Increased Operational Speed
Agile medicine production can improve operational flexibility and speed to market. With new technologies in industrial automation, IoT, analytics, augmented reality, and more, the time to market for life-saving treatments and medicine has never been quicker. These technologies can ensure that treatments are available at the right time, with the highest product quality and safety, to patients in need.
3. Improved Patient Care
Agile medicine production dwells on producing drugs, vaccines, therapeies, treatments, or other pharmaceutical products that will make life easier for patients. GMP manufacturing goes beyond adhering to regulatory policies found within typical manufacturing operations. As such, the emphasis on the end user, specifically patients in need, means that the highest degree of patient care is required when producing treatments.
4. A Wider Reach
Traditional manufacturing may be siloed to a specific region or area. Shipping conditions and shelf-life considerations must be considered when producing drug-products for global distribution. With agile manufacturing, the new facilities may be developed faster, to deliver personalized treatments and care to regional patients.
That way, an organization may establish several manufacturing plants in different locales, faster and with a lighter footprint. Consequently, the organization will reach a wider audience, respond to their various health concerns, and promptly reach them with necessary medicines.
Portability and decentralization are the key advantages of agile manufacturing techniques, which pharma can use to manufacture small-batch and personalized medicines closer to the point of care. Moreover, it is flexible, faster, and allows pharma companies to space out their manufacturing plants across different locations.
Agile manufacturing helps cater to many of the pain points found today in pharmaceutical manufacturing. Demands to deliver treatments to patients faster mean that new technologies must be adopted. Cloud, IoT, augmented reality (AR), advanced analytics, blockchain, and more can help, but the organization must be ready to support such an effort. Phased digital transformation is the best way to seamlessly adopt new technologies and deliver the highest quality products to patients in need.
OpsTrakker is a great component of any agile manufacturing operation.
Our lightweight software is user-friendly and will help you deploy electronic logbooks and forms in less time. OpsTrakker’s flexible architecture means that you can focus on what matters. Both available on-premise or in the cloud, OpsTrakker can be set up in less time and with fewer resources. OpsTrakker is paperless and digital, meaning that no longer will your organization have to rely on paper and pen and lengthy post-mortem review cycles to achieve operational excellence. Workflows are highly configurable and require little to no code to deploy. Get in touch today to see how OpsTrakker can help your manufacturing agility and kickstart your digital transformation.