Unlocking innovation inside a global giant

Over the course of a five year partnership, we've worked closely with Novartis across a wide range of projects to unlock value for teams and customers.

Novartis data analytics projects

About Novartis

Novartis is one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, with products that are used by over 250 million people. At the cutting edge of science and technology, they employ over 70,000 people worldwide.

Since 2018, &us has partnered with Novartis on a wide range of projects and initiatives spanning innovation, design and cultural transformation. Below we explore three key projects from our multi-year partnership.

Project 1
Streamlining medical manufacturing with advanced analytics 

Medical manufacturing is a highly technical, complex process with many parameters, teams and locations in play. Novartis knew their existing system was siloed, wasting valuable time and resources as well as making efficient decision-making hard.

It was time to bring advanced analytics into play, creating a new tool for teams on the ground that could track the end-to-end journey of any given order. The joint team, led by &us, began by mapping one drug’s production from beginning to end, conducting extensive user research and design thinking workshops to uncover the full process.

The result is a new application that provides a single source of truth, providing the relevant team with the essential data they need to track and adjust production and manage resources. The initiative is now being expanded to additional production sites and brands.

In addition to the tool itself, &us used the opportunity to upskill and develop Novartis’ internal capabilities, introducing them to Agile ways of working and design thinking practices. This has allowed the internal team to develop their own roadmap of new features to further enrich their new application.

Novartis team discussing plans for one of their products
A team meeting at Novartis
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&us and Novartis getting outside the office to get a fresh perspective

Project 2: Tackling substance use disorder together (SUD)

Frequently in the headlines, substance and opioid abuse are major health challenges in the US. Sandoz (formerly part of Novartis) felt they could address important unmet patient needs with their reSET-O digital therapeutic and online community - but needed help to refine and test the proposition further.

&us led a lean six week discovery to help the internal team identify more effective ways to support SUD patients through their recovery, and ultimately drive up the number of subscribers to the community. Using outcome-driven innovation techniques, we successfully mapped and identified new opportunities to support patients, and developed a concept that could be prototyped and tested quickly with real people.

The design and prototyping sprint allowed the team to see the service clearly, end-to-end, in order to understand where patient engagement was low and design practical solutions to better meet their needs.

Novartis Therabot screen
Message from the Novartis Sandoz Therabot
Over a six week design and prototyping sprint, we mapped out tangible ways to increase SUD patient engagement, and better meet their needs.

Project 3: Improving product adoption, UX and consistency

Sales teams at Novartis use a reporting and analytics dashboard known as DICE (Data Insights Customer Experience) to support their decision-making, and enhance their performance. Aggregating a great amount of data on the DICE dashboards, without unifying it at a global scale, resulted in a poor user experience and confusing, inconsistent data across countries.

&us began a comprehensive redesign of key dashboards with user interviews across a large cross-section of the DICE target user group. We created three target personas, highlighting  their daily activities, needs and challenges. From there, we mapped them against their objectives, to understand how they drew insights from key data and what their resulting actions might be. We then compared data needs and data sources of sample countries to rethink and unify the dashboards from the ground up.

The project involved the creation of over ten redesigned dashboards, and a significant increase in adoption, as well as a more globally consistent experience, with the flexibility to allow for localised dashboard variations. 

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Novartis data dashboards
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By creating more consistent, user-friendly, dashboards, &us helped ensure Novartis could make better decisions based on the data. 
Novartis data innovation

Key outcomes

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The ability to recognise and act on new opportunities

Each of the projects above has helped Novartis unlock new value - by exploring new opportunities and product ideas, improving existing products, and strengthening the capabilities of their existing teams.

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New internal systems and prototypes

We worked with Novartis on several products and prototypes, including a production analytics platform, a prototype for assisting SUD patients through recovery, and improvements to their data management platform.


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