What is your background and current role?

I joined Veeva as SVP of commercial strategy earlier this year. Before this I spent 20+ years at Accenture delivering large-scale business transformation programmes - largely focused in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors.

It’s an exciting time to be working in the life sciences industry as it accelerates towards more intelligent customer engagement. I aim to bring a broad perspective of how an effective digital and data strategy can be truly transformative. Ultimately, helping to get treatments to patients who need them as quickly as possible.

What does your day-to-day work involve?

A lot of time is spent on making sure we constantly evolve our product offering to reflect the changing nature of life sciences. For example, we have recently been bolstering Commercial Cloud with new levels of artificial intelligence (AI).

But we don’t just innovate for the sake of it. We are constantly asking: what is the value of this to our customers? How will it help them to drive smarter interactions with all customers across all channels? I work closely with our product teams to make sure our offering is always market leading, and with customers to make sure we are getting the right feedback and that they are using the richest features and functionality.

What does the future of life sciences companies and HCP collaborations look like?

It is an increasingly global marketplace. This means life sciences companies are having to work harder than ever to harmonise their operations, unify their data sources, and ensure maximum efficiency.

The explosion in commercial opportunities is paralleled by an explosion in communication channels between healthcare organisations and stakeholders. More communication and more data means the future of life sciences companies and HCP collaborations will have to include a strong emphasis on getting the right data foundation in place. This is critical for life sciences companies to be able to deliver tailored insights and meaningful interactions in a scalable way, in every market.

What do you think are going to be the biggest challenges for the industry in the next few years?

Life sciences companies have a huge responsibility to manage their customers’ data in a compliant and ethical manner and, the more data that is involved, the more complicated that process can become. Data protection regulations such as GDPR add further responsibilities. Having an enterprise grade secure environment to work within is critical.

What has been your greatest professional challenge to date?

Having spent many years grappling with huge amounts of data, across HCPs, healthcare delivery, and also on the patient data side, one of the hardest challenges I have faced has been  identifying how best to support HCPs to achieve the right outcomes. A highlight was when I took on the challenge of delivering patient insights on a 60 million population, coupled with the right treatment pathways, at the right time and place.

What do you hope to achieve in your role at Veeva?

We are committed to helping the industry drive more intelligent engagement. For me personally, that means continuing the great work that’s already been done to make sure we are offering the best possible technology to support life sciences business processes. It means helping our customers to be more productive and realize the benefits of data-powered engagement with their customers.

If companies are effectively bringing together data, content and interactions for a complete customer engagement strategy, then I am doing what I set out to achieve.

What are your passions outside of work?

Beyond my commitments at work, I spend much of my time ensuring my 9 and 12 year old children understand the opportunities there are in the world to contribute and learn from experiences. We travel often, explore museums, attend theatre performances and have a very active sporting schedule involving tennis, cycling, cricket and football. When I get some time to myself, I’ve discovered a passion for spin classes on a stationary bike, something that I never expected.

What achievement are you most proud of?

Apart from each and every day’s micro-achievements contributing towards our shared pharma goal of improving the health and wellbeing of people, my passion for sport led me to contribute to the successful running of the London 2012 Olympic Games. There is no greater honour than to have been part of one of the greatest adverts for a healthy lifestyle than the Olympic Games, where top performing athletes demonstrate their prowess in their chosen field.