Elisha Talley-Roithner, global head of operations, PPD Biotech, discusses PPD Biotech’s Biotech University and its unique training capabilities.
During the past decade, the drug development industry has changed dramatically, with greater investment made in emerging biotech. As a result, a larger share of the clinical development space is now occupied by biotech and smaller pharma companies, representing a transition away from the traditional “Big Pharma” landscape.
Sensing such a shift on the horizon, we established PPD® Biotech in 2014 with the initial focus of creating an operational framework better aligned with emerging biotech. As a large CRO, we have a lot to offer emerging companies. However, we must ensure that the processes and structures developed in our work in the past 30 years, which have contributed to the delivery of efficient, high-quality services, do not become an obstacle to these innovative biotechs.
In the early stages of this model, we identified and allocated team members to PPD Biotech who share a similar mindset with our biotech clients – ownership, passion and a rapid response to changing priorities. As PPD Biotech grew, we needed to identify team members with a biotech mindset, and eventually recognized that it should be cultivated throughout the company.
Our training capabilities make up a core component of what makes PPD a great company. Incorporating knowledge gleaned from our partnerships with biotech and small pharma, we built a customized certificate training program, Biotech University, designed to cultivate and reinforce an entrepreneurial mindset among team members engaged with biotech clients. At the core of this program, we built a set of novel learning modules paired with soft skill courses to provide a robust curriculum centered around the biotech mindset.
We built a training program that invites our colleagues to think differently and promote empowered problem solving and innovation in our highly regulated world. Our teams have shown a lot of enthusiasm to be a part of Biotech University. I’m looking forward to seeing how further cultivating the biotech mindset benefits us and our clients.
This initiative represents a win-win scenario for emerging biotech and a marketplace leadership opportunity for PPD. It’s no longer enough for a CRO to ponder the needs of biotech in a rapidly changing drug development environment. When you understand the biotech mindset and the unique needs these companies have, you make better recommendations, forge stronger relationships and efficiently deliver exactly what clients need.
Learn more about PPD Biotech and our capabilities.