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Astrazeneca: Building the Data Platform of the Future

Astrazeneca: Building the Data Platform of the Future

  • Isabelle Nuage
    Isabelle Nuage is Director of Product Marketing for Big Data at Talend. Her field of expertise include Data Integration, Big Data and Analytics. Isabelle brings more than 19 years of experience in the software industry holding various leadership positions in product marketing at SAP & Business Objects.

AstraZeneca plc is a global, science-led biopharmaceutical company that is the world’s seventh-largest pharmaceutical business, with operations in more than 100 countries. The company focuses on the discovery, development, and commercialization of prescription medicines, which are used by millions of patients worldwide.

It’s one of the few companies to span the entire lifecycle of a medicine; from research and development to manufacturing and supply, and the global commercialization of primary care and specialty care medicines.

Beginning in 2013, AstraZeneca was faced with industry disruption and competitive pressure. For business sustainability and growth, AstraZeneca needed to change their product and portfolio strategy.

As the starting point, they needed to transform their core IT and finance functions. Data is at the heart of these transformations. They had a number of IT-related challenges, including inflexible and non-scalable infrastructure; data silos and diverse data models and file sizes within the organization; a lack of enterprise data governance; and infrastructure over-provisioning for required performance.

The company had grown substantially, including through mergers and acquisitions, and had data dispersed throughout the organization in a variety of systems. Additionally, financial data volume fluctuates depending on where they are in the financial cycle and peaks at month-end, quarters or financial year end are common.

In addition to causing inconsistencies in reporting, silos of information prevented the company and its Science and Enabling Unit division from finding insights hiding in unconnected data sources.

For transforming their IT and finance function and accelerating financial reporting, AstraZeneca needed to put in place a modern architecture that could enable a single source of the truth. As part of its solution, AstraZeneca began a move to the cloud, specifically Amazon Web Services (AWS), where it could build a data lake to hold data from a range of source systems, The potential benefits of a cloud-based solution included increased innovation and accelerated time to market, lower costs, and simplified systems.

But the AWS data lake was only part of the answer. The company needed a way to capture the data, and that’s where solutions such as Talend Big Data and Talend Data Quality come into play. AstraZeneca selected Talend for its AWS connectivity, flexibility, and licensing model, and valued its ability to scale rapidly without incurring extra costs.

The Talend technologies are responsible for lifting, shifting, transforming, and delivering data into the cloud, extracting from multiple sources, and then pushing that data into Amazon S3.

Their IT and Business Transformation initiative was successful and has paved the way for Business Transformation initiatives across five business units and they are leveraging this modern data platform for driving new business opportunities.

Attend this session at Talend Connect UK 2018 to learn more about how AstraZeneca transformed its IT and finance functions by developing an event-driven, scalable data-platform to support massive month-end peak activity, leading to financial reporting in half the time and half the cost.

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