Since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic the pharmaceutical industry has flexed the ability to remain agile and pivot to digital experiences. As 2021 wraps up, the headwinds that catalyzed numerous innovations are likely to persist unabated. However, pharma leaders have an opportunity to leverage these innovations to make long-term improvements in operational efficiency, data-driven drug discovery, and patient centricity to deliver value to all stakeholders. Capitalizing on these today and in the future means navigating through a complex environment and understanding the trends shaping the industry.

The following is a just a snapshot of the key trends in pharma Forrester sees for 2022:

  • Money is flowing into AI investments, but progress lags. Funding for AI-fueled drug discovery tools reached a fever pitch in recent years, reaching nearly $14 billion, but utilization and adoption of AI/ML in Pharma remains underwhelming compared to industries like technology and financial services. To unleash the true potential of AI 2.0, pharma leaders must continue to build credibility internally via ROI on mature use cases, while simultaneously implementing sustainable AI/ML practices that not only lack bias, but proactively erode encoded, systemic biases.
  • Patient-centric messaging is giving way to patient-centric action. Patient-centricity was forced into the spotlight when the Covid-19 pandemic threatened to bring all clinical trials to a screeching halt and fifty-two percent of pharma leaders say customer experience maturity is low-to-moderate across the industry. Moving forward, pharma leaders must dig deep into the customer interactions and experiences that range from contact centers, patient communities, and other channels with a singular focus on removing friction.
  • Trust is increasingly elusive for pharma due to profiteering and transparency concerns. The pharmaceutical industry has stalled in the “distrusted” tranche of industries in recent years and saw its trust score recede as 2022 approaches, despite a herculean vaccine effort. In addition to perception issues, pharma leaders must also be weary of cybersecurity and data integrity, both of which are being attacked by highly motivated, malevolent actors. To claw back trust in 2022, pharma executives must home in on The Trust Imperative, leverage a Zero Trust eXtended architecture and establish the viewpoint internally that trust is local.

2022 presents an existential question to pharma leaders. Do you proceed with the novel approaches and learnings of last year, or does the industry revert to “tried and true” processes? Being informed and getting in front of the most critical trends provides will help fuel success in the year ahead.

Learn more about the rest of the key trends in the pharmaceutical industry in our report here. Read the report for more information on the drivers of change and how pharma leaders responsible for technology, CX, and trust should respond. If you have additional questions, book an inquiry here.