Innovation Drivers In Life Sciences Bring Health And Hope

Jack Schmidt

What is driving transformation in the health sciences industry? It is definitely an industry that is changing as we speak, as the digital economy brings new ways of doing things. In fact, the digital world is a key influencer and accelerator for change.

The life sciences industry has traditionally collaborated with other industries in the areas of research and development, supply chain management, sales and marketing, and manufacturing.

New technologies have opened up many new avenues for doing business in pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical devices businesses. As the digital world increasingly takes hold, here are some of the main drivers for change in the health sciences industry.

Healthcare reforms

Healthcare reforms are changing the life sciences industry. The reforms are focusing on making therapies more cost-effective for businesses while improving affordability for customers. There is also a greater focus on improving efficiency and obtaining better outcomes for patients.

Scientific advances

Scientific advances are being made every day, thanks to technology. There are new discoveries in genomics, pharmacology, proteomics, and many other disciplines. It seems each day brings a new and important scientific discovery in the health sciences field. These discoveries are improving the lives of the people who need them through new drugs, surgical procedures, medical devices, physical therapy techniques, or any number of other things. These cutting-edge innovations are creating the health sciences industry of the future—and it is a promising-looking future indeed.

Better-educated patients

Thanks to technology, today’s patients take more accountability for their own health than ever. The Internet allows them to look up a wealth of medical information. Patients can discover new insights and consult their doctors, and even find new practitioners they trust. They can learn more about symptoms and their implications, research side effects, interactions, and remedies. They can explore websites and have online discussions with others who share their experiences.  Today’s patients can get their questions answered by other patients, and even doctors, online. They can then meet with their doctors better-informed and prepared to act as their own advocates.

Of course, not all the information on the Internet and social media is high quality – but health sciences organizations need to deal with this trend, for the good and the bad.

New competitors

New competitors are also shaking things up in traditional healthcare markets by offering new technological innovations. Some of these companies are not traditional healthcare companies; for example, Apple and other tech companies are entering the healthcare sciences marketplace with health-related apps and products. By doing so, they are pushing the traditional healthcare companies to innovate and blurring the lines between industries, making collaborations easier and more productive.

Driving innovation in the life sciences: A continuing process

The life sciences industry will continue to see disruption as technology makes innovation more affordable. This is true in the western world as well as in emerging markets. In fact, basic health care will become more available and innovation will become more common in emerging markets. A stronger focus on the patient is one real difference that will only increase. When the focus is on the patient, the health sciences world is working as it should, and that benefits everyone.

If you would like to learn more about how the life sciences industry is changing and how technology can be used for innovating business models, processes and how we work, visit Life Sciences. Collaborating in a digital world.


Jack Schmidt

About Jack Schmidt

Jack Schmidt is director of the Life Sciences Business Unit at SAP.