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EDM Council Report Uncovers Major Evolution in Data Management Practices within Pharma / Life Sciences

Latest benchmark report from EDMC, OSTHUS, PwC Strategy& includes intel from 7 of top 10 Pharma companies globally

NEW YORK, and AACHEN, Germany, July 29, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- EDM Council, the cross-industry trade association for data management and analytics, along with OSTHUS and Strategy&, PwC's global strategy consulting business, have released the 2021 EDM Council Global Data Management Benchmark Survey for the Pharma / Life Sciences industry. More than 20 Pharma / Life Sciences companies participated in the survey, including 7 of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies in the world.

The results will provide valuable insights to help firms understand their data management capabilities to drive successful initiatives across advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, data ethics, data privacy, digital transformation, machine learning, and regulatory compliance. The Pharma / Life Sciences industry has evolved rapidly in its data management practices in recent years, and this year's benchmark survey takes a close look at the latest developments. Of the companies surveyed, 85% have an analytics program that is global in scope and 66% of these were established in the last three years.

As with prior benchmarking studies, most recently the 2020 Global Data Management Benchmark Report, the survey was conducted using EDM Council's DCAM©—the Data Management Capability Assessment Model—which provides the key dimensions to build and assess a firm's Data Management Program. DCAM added a new Data Analytics component in 2020, which guides and assesses how organizations need to support their data analytics, AI and ML programs.

Overall, this report reveals how the Pharma / Life Sciences industry is stepping up its data management game by:

  • Establishing a CDO (Chief Data Officer) function to derive business value from data: 75% have established the function, although many have done so only in the last year, and many report to the CIO, COO, or a Line of Business (LOB)
  • Employing analytics to execute their business strategy: 70% of Pharma / Life Sciences companies said responsibility for analytics falls directly to the Line of Business, rather than the CDO
  • Investing in expanding their ability to leverage data and analytics: 45% of respondents anticipate that data and analytics will have the greatest opportunity to add value to Research and Development

"Advancements in data analytics, AI, and machine learning have played a pivotal role in the evolution of the Pharma / Life Sciences sector," said John Bottega, President, EDM Council. "This latest report illustrates how sophisticated the industry has become in its use of these resources, as well as what opportunities lie ahead to further improve data management capabilities."

"Although modern data management practices are still very much in their nascent stages within the Pharma / Life Sciences sector, this report has uncovered where the industry has taken major strides and where it can be improved," said Abhishek Prasad, Senior Consultant - Data Governance & Strategy at OSTHUS.

"Companies are putting greater emphasis on educating employees on data literacy, CDOs are playing a bigger role within the organizations, and reporting lines are becoming clearer. The outlook for data management best practices in the Pharma / Life Sciences sector is very good," said Ralf Schoenfeld, Director at Strategy& Germany.

For more information and to download the full report, please visit  

About EDM Council
EDM Council is the global association created to elevate the practice of data management and analytics as a business and operational priority. The Council is the leading global advocate for the development and implementation of data standards, best practices, and comprehensive training and certification programs. With more than 250 member organizations globally from the Americas, EMEA, and Asia, and more than 10,000 data management professionals as members, EDM Council provides a venue for data professionals to interact, communicate, and collaborate on the challenges and advances in data management and analytics as critical organizational functions. For more, visit and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter

OSTHUS is a multinational digital R&D consultancy headquartered in Aachen, Germany. For over two decades, we have worked with executive teams in the life sciences industry to introduce a culture of innovation that drives enterprise value. With data innovation frameworks deployed in 16 of the top 20 big pharmaceutical companies in the world, we offer a strong track record of reducing costs while increasing time-to-market for complex data initiatives. We offer a pragmatic methodology for companies seeking to leverage a vendor-agnostic approach in the pursuit of successful data and IT strategy, data governance, and advanced analytics. For more, visit us on and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter

About PwC Strategy&
Strategy& is a global strategy consulting business uniquely positioned to help deliver your best future: one that is built on differentiation from the inside out and tailored exactly to you. As part of PwC, every day we're building the winning systems that are at the heart of growth. We combine our powerful foresight with this tangible know-how, technology, and scale to help you create a better, more transformative strategy from day one. As the only at-scale strategy business that's part of a global professional services network, we embed our strategy capabilities with frontline teams across PwC to show you where you need to go, the choices you'll need to make to get there, and how to get it right. The result is an authentic strategy process powerful enough to capture possibility, while pragmatic enough to ensure effective delivery. It's the strategy that gets an organization through the changes of today and drives results that redefine tomorrow. It's the strategy that turns vision into reality. It's strategy, made real. For more, visit and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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