Data Driven Decision Making at Pfizer – A Case Study in Data Virtualization
Finding a molecule with the potential to become a new drug is complicated. It’s time-consuming. Fewer than 10 percent of molecules or compounds discovered are promising enough to enter the development pipeline. And fewer of those ever come to market. At Pfizer, if it were not for data virtualization, it would be even more challenging.
Years of Data, Thousands of Decisions
The pipeline from discovery to licensing occurs in phases over 15-20 years, and few compounds complete the journey. The initial study phase represents a multimillion-dollar investment decision. Each succeeding phase – proof-of-concept study, dose range study, and large-scale population study – represents a magnitude-larger investment and risk than the one before.
Senior management and portfolio managers need to know:
- Which projects the company should fund?
- Which compounds are meeting Pfizer’s high standards for efficacy and safety?
- What are scientists discovering in clinical trials?
Portfolio and project managers routinely make complex tactical decisions such as:
- How to allocate scarce R&D resources across different projects?
- How to prioritize multiple development scenarios?
- What is impact of a clinical trial result on downstream manufacturing?
Before Pfizer adopted Cisco Data Virtualization, getting useful data to answer these questions took weeks or months. Why so long? The problem has several dimensions. First, each phase of development generates massive amounts of data and requires extensive analysis to provide an accurate picture. Second, data comes from Pfizer research scientists all over the world; from physicians; clinical trials; product owners and managers; marketing teams; and hundreds of different back-end systems. Third, the scientific method is based on trial and error, with unpredictable results. Thus no two decisions are alike and therefore the specific data required for each decision is unique.
Data Virtualization Provides the Solution
To support their decision-making needs, Pfizer needed a solution that would allow them to pull all this diverse information together in an agile, ad hoc way. Cisco Data Virtualization – agile data integration software that makes it easy to access and gather relevant data, no matter where data sources reside – provided the solution.
With Cisco Data Virtualization, Pfizer’s research and portfolio data resides in one virtual place and provides “one version of the truth” that is available for everyone to use to address the myriad decisions that arise. Further, by applying virtualization instead of consolidation, infrastructure costs are also reduced.
According to Pfizer, “data virtualization is far less expensive than building specialized data marts to answer questions. With Cisco Data Virtualization, our portfolio teams get answers in hours or days for about one-tenth the cost.”
This data virtualization progress has not gone unnoticed. At Data Virtualization Day 2012, Pfizer was awarded the “Data Virtualization Champion” award for consistently achieving and promoting data virtualization value within the organization and across the industry.
Learn from other leaders in the industry and see who wins this year’s Data Virtualization Leadership Awards at Data Virtualization Day 2014 on October 1. Register now!
To read more about this Pfizer case study click here.
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