Biotechnology software expert Benchling has announced its entry into the Early Development market, launching new solutions designed to allow scientists to seamlessly move from research through development within a single system for the first time. Through the expansion of the firm’s offerings, the R&D Cloud is designed to accommodate both the flexibility and speed needed for research efficiency, as well as the control and compliance required for regulated processes.
During the launch event, ScientistLive heard how CEO and co-founder, Sajith Wickramasekara has been observing some remarkable results with customers that are delpoyng his firm’s time-saving solutions. “We’ve been seeing over a 60% improvement in the time scientists have to spend on manual tasks.” He also mentions that the work being produced is of more scientific value. “Higher quality data helps scientists answer new scientific questions,” he states.
Using this positive feedback, Wickramasekara explained how he was inspired to take a “customer-led” approach when devising the firm’s expansion plans. “Given Benchling’s early focus on research, we have been fortunate to witness our customers turn discoveries into products, and support their transition into development,” Wickramasekara says. “This customer-led approach to expansion gave us an up-close view of the complex coordination required and how scientific collaboration on a single, unified system can improve speed and quality."
Jon Fan, the company’s VP of product points out that, “With over 500 customers, we can draw on customers of all sizes from all industries to inform our product roadmap.” Fan says that with the two new product innovations, “Multiple systems can be consolidated on one single platform.”
The bigger picture
There is unprecedented market and societal pressure on R&D organisations to develop new products and get them to market faster. Vaccines typically take years to develop, but scientists were able to develop multiple Covid-19 vaccines and treatments and get them into clinical trials in months. Getting innovative bioproducts to market more quickly can mean patients receiving new treatments for life-altering conditions sooner, as with the Covid-19 vaccines.
Developing such complex, important products requires modern technology. Disparate point solutions for electronic lab notebooks (ELN), laboratory information management systems (LIMS), and laboratory execution systems (LES) create silos that exacerbate the inherent challenges of complex collaboration, forcing scientists to spend time reconciling data between various systems instead of surfacing and sharing key insights that accelerate product development.
Scientists want a single interface that reflects how their organisations work, gives them access to higher quality data, streamlines collaboration, and makes technology transfer seamless. R&D IT teams want to provide solutions to their business that improve data management, stay current with industry innovations, and offer no-code configuration.
Benchling supports the distinct needs of Early Development with the recent addition of three key innovations:
Reimagined Workflows. The company has expanded its Workflows application to support the collaborative work that takes place across specialised R&D teams. Users can now coordinate task requests and processes across teams with full traceability, including methods, samples, and inventory. Program leaders gain visibility into operational data to reduce bottlenecks and increase productivity. Workflows helps teams from discovery to development work more efficiently together and reach critical milestones faster.
Structured Templates. With new, more structured templates, Development teams can easily create shared, standardised processes for repeatable experiments, analytical tests, QC protocols, and more. These procedures can be locked down to meet regulatory and compliance requirements.
Validated Cloud: Earlier in 2021, Benchling also released Validated Cloud to support customers using the platform in GxP environments.