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The Impact of Digital Transformation in Clinical Trials

Digital transformation.

We’ve heard about it for years, but now all of us have experienced a dramatic technological acceleration as the pandemic forced us to embrace digital to meet our everyday needs, from online shopping to remote work to telehealth.  

And we’ll continue to see this trend: a recent McKinsey survey found eight out of 10 organizations have embarked on a digital transformation journey in the last five years. And tech research firm IDC predicts businesses will spend $2.3 trillion per year on digital transformation in the next four years, with worldwide technology investments hitting $7.4 trillion.  

So, what does digital acceleration mean for clinical research, a traditionally risk-averse industry (and for a good reason)?  

At Advarra, embracing and implementing technology isn’t new. In fact, as a digital pioneer leveraging our industry-leading review platform for the last 15 years, Advarra has improved the user experience, increased regulatory compliance, and further connected the ecosystem through digital innovation and technology. 

When we look at what technology enablement means for the industry in more detail, we see benefits ranging from radical and real-time transparency to game-changing efficiencies to more secure workflows and data sharing. In fact, our technology products provide value across the entire review services ecosystem. This includes our foundational Center for IRB Intelligence (CIRBI) platform, which facilitates real-time communication across research programs, to our Biosafety Portal, which simplifies study submissions and reporting, to our SOAR technology, which makes endpoint adjudication easier and more transparent.  

Technology makes us a stronger partner to our clients – and while we’ve already seen a lot of digital progress in recent years, there’s so much room to grow. We’re continuing to bolster our technology platform and can expect even greater success and benefits with additional adoption, including: 

  1. More consistency of determinations across Advarra’s various committees and offerings. Ensuring the quality and dependability of decision making is a major part of the institutional review board’s (IRB’s) work, and technology allows us to do this more precisely. A consistency of decision making across all of our panels creates a better client experience.
  2. Faster turnaround times and more compressed workflows. This allows multiple components of our review services to operate simultaneously, rather than assembly style. 
  3. Increasing transparency and accountability. It’s important for us to share turnaround times and service-level agreements (SLAs) with clients. There are no guessing games with Advarra, and technology enables us to share more of that journey with clients. 

The power and promise of technology is exhilarating, but we also know we need to be trusted stewards of that technology in an industry like clinical research, where safety is the ultimate priority.  

With digital transformation continuing to change almost everything in our lives, we understand the importance of precedent and industry knowledge. This ultimately makes us the only partner who can help the industry transform and embrace new technologies without compromising on safety, quality, or outcomes.  

The future is exciting – and innovation will help us continue to achieve even greater things for the industry, to not only improve performance and efficiency to get therapies to market faster, but also improve safety and enhance clinical trial protocols. 

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