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Patrick Schmitz Patrick Schmitz

Innovative and agile analytics Data Lab helps determine business insights and value


In a fast-evolving healthcare ecosystem, UCB wanted to use the diverse, growing range of internal and external data sources at its disposal to improve patient care and business value.

It launched an ambitious advanced analytics program that would help treat data as an enterprise asset and encourage collaboration between IT and business. The program would require UCB to transcend the company’s organizational boundaries to help create an open innovation model and capture the business value behind the growing number of new data sources, such as real-world evidence data and machine-to-machine data.

To turn its vision into a reality, UCB collaborated closely with Accenture on an innovative, cost-effective analytics “Data Lab” that would answer key business questions and identify tangible, untapped pockets of business value across the company. Together, Accenture and UCB established a strategic council to set the long-term analytics strategy and roadmap, as well as guide decision-making. With the council, UCB could tap into Accenture analytics thought leadership, innovation and specialist capabilities throughout its analytics journey.

The Data Lab explored six strategic business questions, set by the strategic council, and conducted 50-man-day analytics “sprints” to assess the value that could be achieved in each area. For instance, one sprint identified new ways to target physicians by leveraging public data and applying advanced analytics techniques. Each “sprint” used a broad range of internal and external data, applied advanced analytics and reached an answer. The approach was flexible, so each “sprint” delivery team could redirect or fine-tune its efforts to work with available data sets and help achieve the best possible business value. Data discovery and visualization tools also helped the teams see, in a concrete way, the business value that could be achieved from each “sprint.” Based on the results, UCB could then decide whether it wanted to set up the “sprint” as an ongoing analytics service.

As a result of the program’s success, business leaders from across the organization have submitted new business questions to the Data Lab, encompassing market access, competitive intelligence, legal, market research and HR.

This innovative analytics approach has helped UCB rethink its business and invest in programs that will help deliver better patient outcomes, improve customer service and drive shareholder returns.

The project was recognized by Data News, Belgium’s leading IT magazine, as the 2013 winner of the “ICT Project of the Year—Large Enterprises” award.


Patrick Schmitz

Senior Manager, Accenture Analytics

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