Banish the Frankensystem Monster: Content Management Across the Lifecycle

In previous posts, we discussed the ever increasing evolving challenges of information management in Life Sciences, and how the “Frankensystems” we use today create confusion, inefficiency and higher costs.

If you want to banish the “Frankensystems” in your environment, there are three key things you need to do:

Select the right tool
Create efficient business processes
Develop a robust change management plan

A better mousetrap 

Most tools do not address the entire lifecycle. In the figure shown, the outer ring represents the lifecycle from finding the right content to publishing and distributing the final product, and the inner circles illustrate the tools or systems that are used typically.

To manage information today, various systems are used at each step, and often (in the case of email) information or documents are handled outside the system.

Fortunately, there is now a single, end-to-end, system that includes the necessary functionality and integration for managing information in the lifecycle.

Docuvera, a cloud-based software offered by Author-It, is a unique solution that supports creation, review, approval, localization, storage and distribution of your key regulated and controlled information and documents within a single integrated system.  A component-based authoring solution, Docuvera enables information reuse and ensures consistency and accuracy across documents.  Content is created once and can be re-used across document types or global regions.  Changes are made once and are automatically replicated throughout the document library.  Provided with a clear audit trail, version control issues are eliminated.  The ability to reuse content across departmental silos improves visibility and transparency while  increasing efficiency and reducing costs.  Some clients have avoided or reduced cost by 29-44% for document creation, and 74% for reusing information. It helps you work faster too: reducing cycle time by as much as 40-45%.

Setting up for success 

Too often companies assume that a new technology or tool will fix their pain points. But without efficient business processes and effective change management, most (70%) technology implementations fail.  Docuvera—or any solution—alone will not banish the monster. It needs to be supported by efficient business processes and effective change management and communication.

TransAccel Group is uniquely positioned to help design, execute and realize the benefits of an integrated, enterprise-level information management strategy. Our approach
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Do you manage documents using a modern-day Frankensystem?

The way we create, review, localize, store and manage documents in the pharmaceutical industry today bears a striking resemblance to the story of Frankenstein’s monster (at least in the original film version). Several tools, systems and processes are cobbled together to manage the high volume of documentation needed to support drug development and commercialization, without much planning, testing or feedback.

How did we get here?

Like many sectors, the pharmaceutical industry is known for functional siloes, which make it difficult to communicate and collaborate across the enterprise. The challenges are magnified when multiple systems are involved, and further compounded when information needs to be shared, or when larger documents, such as submissions, need to be created collaboratively across business functions.

It starts with scattered information and broken processes. 

When you’re creating a document that cuts across functional areas, such as a regulatory submission, medical writers, subject matter experts and/or authors must spend time identifying and retrieving content, by searching across multiple systems (drives, folders, other storage systems) and emailing various contributors to find the most up-to-date content. When more than one author is involved, people must either work independently on their sections, or documents must be checked in and out, making collaboration more complex.

The evolution of Frankensystems

Identifying content, creating documents, reviewing and localizing documents is challenging enough without complicating matters further by using multiple systems. But this approach started because an integrated solution wasn’t there to support the end-to-end process, so companies addressed each sub-process as technology became available. Today, “Frankensystems” persist and multiply in the absence of an integrated strategy that brings together business and IT goals, and manages information, documents and the supporting processes.

Can you banish the monster—or at least teach it to dance?

Yes! The
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GET SMART About Unstructured Data. CONTROL or CHAOS? (Or is it KAOS?)

By |November 24th, 2014|Categories: Data Security|Tags: , , , , , , |Comments Off on GET SMART About Unstructured Data. CONTROL or CHAOS? (Or is it KAOS?)

How Smart are you? Here’s a quick quiz to find out:

1. In the mid-60’s TV show Get Smart, Don Adams’ fellow female agent was Agent number what?

a. 79

b. 89

c. 99

d. 229


2. True or False

Unstructured data is human-generated, existing on Windows and Linux/Unix File servers, SharePoint and Exchange Platforms.


3. Who were Get Smarts’ creators?

a. Steve Allen

b. Mel Brooks and Buck Henry

c. Buck Henry and Cesar Romero

d. Mel Brooks


4. True or False

Unstructured data on average represents 80% of your organization’s data and is multiplying at 30-50% a year.


5. What device did “Control” utilize in order to keep information confidential?

a. A tricked-out umbrella

b. A private closet

c. The Cone of Silence

d. Invisible Ink


6. Which of the following questions regarding the management of unstructured data is difficult for most organizations to answer?

a. Who owns what data?

b. Who has permission to the data?

c. What data is highly sensitive and over-exposed?

d. How can exposed data be remedied without disturbing the business?

e. What data is being deleted? By whom?

f. What data is walking out of the company and with whom?

g. All the above.


7. Which was not one of Maxwell Smart’s catchphrases?

a. Maxwell Smart will not fail.

b. I asked you not to tell me that.

c. Would you believe…

d. Missed it by that much.

e. And…loving it.


8. True or False

TransAccel Group has partnered with Varonis Systems to offer solutions that address the concerns regarding the proliferation of unstructured data by offering audit trail analysis, permissions hierarchies and transparency, alerts, and data transfer solutions, among other benefits.


9. Which of the following characters was not featured in Get Smart?

a. The Chief

b. Dr. Iron

c. Hymie the Robot

d. Ludwig Von Siegfried

e. Mr. Big


10. Varonis software reduces risks to data in which of the following ways:

a. Data mistakenly exposed is identified and locked down safely, including sensitive and regulated content

b. Access controls are much more restricted; employees have access to only what they need

c. Data owners with knowledge of their data assets are
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With A Little Help From My Friends

By |September 30th, 2013|Categories: time|Tags: , , , , , |Comments Off on With A Little Help From My Friends

In my travels, I try to pick up tidbits to help me be more effective at managing projects. We’ve all seen the various tools, techniques, methodologies, etc. to help us deliver against The Big Three: cost, scope and time—but is that really all there is? The funny thing about projects is that success is declared despite most of the project participants knowing that the outcome was somewhat less than successful. Why is that? You hear things like, “It came in on time, under budget and was executed exactly as documented in the requirements.” So it must have been a success, right? And yet there is an unspoken disappointment because it’s not really entirely what was envisioned.

The other day, I ran across a great piece by Gartner about improving project success. Its premise was that if you focus on three things—Partnership, Requirements and Resources—you can really increase the probability of a successful project outcome. Wow! . . .something different from The Big Three!! I was easily able to relate requirements and resources back to the big three, but what about partnership? The formal definition of “partnership” (courtesy of my dictionary) was of little use, but when I looked at its synonyms, I found words like alliance, collaboration, connection, relation, and union. And that’s when it hit me. Partnership doesn’t relate to the big three but rather comprises the foundation that enables us to deliver on them. Without true partnership, project realization or the ability to deliver the expected value from the project is unlikely.

This should have been obvious considering the successful projects I’ve participated in and led. It was partnership at all levels that helped drive realization. From various IT organizations to external partners to
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