Pharmaceutical businesses have increased their focus on operations enablement and innovation to tackle emerging challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

GlobalData has conducted a survey across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific regions to identify the scope of digital transformation in pharmaceutical companies in 2019 and 2020.

Digital transformation_Scope of Digital Transformations across geographies 2020 vs 2019

A Closer Look – Geography, 2019 vs. 2020

An analysis of the survey revealed that business innovation and customer engagement remained the main scopes of digital transformation in 2019, but operations enablement and innovation initiatives gained traction in 2020 following the pandemic. The initiatives include deployment of new software, new tools to enable remote operations, as well as new marketing and sales solutions.

In North America, the percentage of respondents who said that their organisations are focusing on operations enablement and innovation increased from 56% in 2019 to 57% in 2020. The percentage jumped from 49% in 2019 to 70% in 2020 in Europe, and from 62% to 67% in Asia Pacific.

Business innovation was mentioned as the main goal behind digital transformation strategy by 67% of the respondents in North America in 2019, which declined to 50% in 2020. In Europe, the percentage increased from 51% in 2019  to 54% in 2020, while in Asia Pacific it was 59% in 2019, before declining to 49% in 2020.

The focus on customer engagement changed marginally in North America, increasing from 56% in 2019 to 57% in 2020. The percentage declined from 46% in 2019 to 45% in 2020 in Europe, but increased in Asia Pacific from 68% in 2019 to 70% in 2020.

The analysis is based on Digital Transformation and Emerging Technology in the Healthcare Industry, 2020 survey fielded from 17 September to 06 October 2020.