Pharmaceutical services provider PCI Pharma Services is committed to being the bridge connecting life-changing therapies and patients. To stay ahead of the digital curve, PCI Pharma Services needed a way to provide faster and more reliable access to supply chain data for its pharmaceutical and biotechnology customers.
Originally featured on Amazon Web Services, December 2021
PCI Pharma Services looked to Amazon Web Services (AWS) for help digitizing its touchpoints with customers due to the cloud service provider’s reputation for developing secure, scalable solutions. Using AWS services, the company built a new cloud-based solution that provides customers with access to real-time supply chain data. This solution, pci | bridge, has enhanced the security of sensitive data and increased client engagement.
Delivering Valuable Data to Global Customers
PCI Pharma Services provides pharmaceutical development services to the global healthcare market, supporting pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in more than 100 countries. The company saw the potential of using digital systems to support its customers’ operations and wanted to provide them with greater visibility into their clinical and commercial supply chains. This solution could help its customers make decisions at a faster pace. To enhance customer experiences, business processes, and information technology, PCI Pharma Services initiated a digital transformation in early 2020.
As part of its transformation, PCI Pharma Services chose to build pci | bridge on AWS. pci | bridge is a digital solution that delivers real-time data and insights to customers, giving them greater transparency into their supply chains and showing how they can move assets, resources, and inventory faster and more efficiently. “We wanted a solution that was scalable and secure and that our customers were comfortable with,” says Morgan Brandt, director of digital products at PCI Pharma Services. “We can scale easily on AWS. By using AWS services, we inherit features that help us maintain high security, which is important for the sensitive data we handle.”
Facilitating Access to Secure, Real-Time Data
Since launching pci | bridge on AWS in September 2020, PCI Pharma Services has transformed the way it delivers data to its customers. In addition to the security enhancements that pci | bridge inherited from running on AWS, customers enjoy the benefit of greater data access and a self-service environment. Previously, the process to access information took 1 day, meaning that customers received data that could be up to 24 hours old. “Now it takes less than 5 minutes,” says Brandt. “Clients can have real-time data at their fingertips whenever they need it.” During the COVID-19 pandemic, access to data has proven vital for customers of PCI Pharma Services. Companies can now rely on pci | bridge for quick, 24/7 access to data, facilitating time-sensitive decision-making with the potential to save lives.
To power pci | bridge, PCI Pharma Services uses Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Services (Amazon EKS), a fully managed service that helps companies provide highly available and secure clusters to automate key tasks such as patching, node provisioning, and updates. PCI Pharma Services uses Amazon EKS to build, test, and deploy pci | bridge across multiple environments and to automatically deploy updates for solution, such as security patches. Using this solution, PCI Pharma Services can improve its security posture and better protect sensitive customer data. “The data we’re showcasing is very sensitive,” says Brandt. “In clinical trials, for example, users should only see certain data points. If they see other data points, the study will need to be discarded, leading to loss of time, money, and resources. Using AWS services, we can deliver the right data to the right users at the right time.”
pci | bridge can process up to 1 GB of data per day and has 2,100 users as of 2021. To support its large user base, PCI Pharma Services hosts the infrastructure for its web and mobile applications and its application development environment on AWS. PCI Pharma Services relies on Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS) for PostgreSQL, which makes it simple to set up, operate, and scale deployments of open-source relational PostgreSQL databases in the cloud. To securely store its sensitive data, PCI Pharma Services uses Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), which offers industry-leading scalability, data availability, security, and performance. By using these AWS services, PCI Pharma Services can quickly scale its computing power, storage, and databases as needed without needing to own, provision, or maintain physical data centers. The combination of these services also makes it simpler for customers to access relevant data on pci | bridge, improving customer efficiency.
By December 2020, PCI Pharma Services had found that its efforts to better serve its customers were proving successful. “Reactions to pci | bridge have been positive across the board,” says Brandt. “Increased customer engagement with the solution is indicative of this positive reaction—and the solution’s intuitive, user-friendly design.” Over 60 percent of the company’s customer base logs in to pci | bridge at least once a week. The solution has transformed the PCI Pharma Services business model to serve a more agile, digital-first mindset. This has simplified project management and saved time and resources for PCI Pharma Services, laying the groundwork for more innovative thinking.
Driving Digital Transformation on AWS
By using AWS to support its transformation, PCI Pharma Services has strengthened its ability to provide secure, real-time access to life-saving data and developed a digital-first mindset across its organization. In the future, the company will continue to use AWS to facilitate digital transformation, and it plans to enhance pci | bridge by building an API that will connect customer systems with the solution. These enhancements will provide customers with greater supply chain visibility and deeper data insights and analytics.
“We appreciate that our developers were able to get started on AWS quickly with easy-to-understand tools,” Brandt says. “AWS has been there when we needed support and has been helpful and responsive. It has been an important part of our continued digital transformation.
See how AWS is supporting other organizations with modernizing their life sciences supply chains.