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November 9, 2023


Global pharmaceutical labeling innovations – an executive roundtable

Laura Johnson

Senior Director of Sales, Life Sciences

In the dynamic realm of pharmaceuticals, Loftware has always been at the forefront of revolutionizing labeling and artwork management. We recently had the incredible opportunity to host an exclusive roundtable event, where we brought together four prominent figures from the pharmaceutical industry. Our esteemed panel featured field luminaries, each contributing unique insights and perspectives on global pharmaceutical labeling innovations. I was thrilled to take part in and see this unique gathering come to light. The panel participants included Sheetal Kulkarni-Alur, the Executive Director and Head of North American Regulatory Affairs at LEO Pharma A/S; Deb McNaughton, the Vice President of Global Labeling, Publishing & Product License Support, Global Regulatory Operations at Pfizer Inc.; Brandon Stempo, a Principal Consultant in Regulatory Affairs Labeling at Opus Regulatory Inc.; and Cham Williams, the Associate Director of Safety, Regulatory, and Quality Solutions at IQVIA Inc.

As the world's leading provider of cloud-based Enterprise Labeling and Artwork Management solutions, Loftware was honored to facilitate this event. Our mission has always revolved around working collaboratively with industry specialists to ensure our solutions enhance accuracy, traceability, compliance, and efficiency in the pharmaceutical industry. This roundtable was a significant milestone in our journey toward achieving this mission.

The roundtable discussions delved deep into the intricate challenges and promising trends in modernizing pharmaceutical labeling and supply chain activities. This industry is fraught with formidable regulatory complexities, making labeling arduous. However, the experts at our roundtable strongly believe that labeling technologies are the key to overcoming these hurdles and embracing the industry's evolving landscape.

Key takeaways from the roundtable

One of the critical topics of discussion focused on the standardization of global labeling operations. Cham Williams of IQVIA pointed out that while the fundamental labeling processes remain consistent across the industry, the true challenge lies in finding the right balance between standardizing processes and customizing labels to cater to the unique requirements of local markets. Flexibility was also recognized as a vital component, particularly when adapting to the variations in different regions.

Another focal point of the conversation was the integration of labeling with existing business applications. In the pharmaceutical industry, precision in data collection and content management is non-negotiable. The roundtable participants weighed in on how the integration of automated labeling processes with existing systems, such as ERP, manufacturing execution systems, and product lifecycle management software, can ensure the delivery of accurate and consistent data. This approach streamlines the process and minimizes the risk of duplication errors, as highlighted by Deb McNaughton from Pfizer.

Streamlining regulatory updates and compliance was a crucial area of discussion. Companies often face the challenge of managing diverse regulatory requirements across different regions and encounter several translation complexities. The panelists recognized the potential benefits of "componentization," a concept that simplifies data management and streamlines the process of handling modifications.

The age of digital transformation demands increased supply chain efficiency and agility, which was another hot topic of discussion. The global pandemic underscored the need for early communication between regulatory and manufacturing functions, particularly when launching new products. It emphasized the importance of connecting systems and data across various functions, from regulatory operations to the intricate web of the supply chain.

eLabeling, a game-changing innovation, emerged as a critical theme as well. eLabeling offers real-time information through QR codes to online resources, significantly reducing the waste generated by preprinted materials. The experts unanimously supported the shift towards a global e-labeling approach, with exceptions when necessary. The focus is on ensuring data accuracy and operational efficiency.

Learn more about pharmaceutical labeling

Loftware is dedicated to helping shape the future of pharmaceutical labeling through collaboration, innovation, and knowledge exchange. This event exemplified the power of initiating crucial conversations to drive change and collectively paint a brighter and more efficient future for the industry, one label at a time, and I couldn't be prouder to have been part of it.

You can view the full video discussion here.

  • Cloud
  • SAP
  • Regulatory
  • Supply Chain
  • Labeling
  • Track and Trace