In the life sciences industry, supply chain pathways exist just as in any other type of industry. The end products may differ, but the goal is for the end user to have a reliable product. In the cases of calibration and standardization, the products must face another step.
Steps Along the Path
Understanding the typical supply chain pathway helps both product manufacturers as well as end users gain insight into a product’s life. So what are the steps along the way? These steps include finding quality raw materials, manufacturing the products using GMP guidelines, distributing the products, and providing the end user with the final product.
The First Step: In the Raw
All products start with raw materials. Think about your favorite smart device: your phone or tablet or laptop—or perhaps even your refrigerator. Your business relies upon this device, and it has what are called emergent properties: it is greater than the sum of its parts. But its parts comprise its raw materials. These can be batteries, keys, screens, and the like. As technology improves, many such parts are made in smaller sizes. Batteries are made to be more energy efficient. These all save space and time, and result in a better product.
The caveat to this is that an end product is also only as good as its parts. So the industry goal is to find the perfect avenue for its success. A business must align high quality and reliability from suppliers with feasible price, so that the product can move along the pathway. In the biotech and pharmaceutical industries, another crucial factor plays a role: that of good manufacturing practices (GMP). Guidelines from the FDA and its equivalents make it essential that materials from suppliers meet the stringent rules necessary.
The Second Step: Building the Product
Traversing the path, we come to the manufacturing process for these devices. You have all the raw materials, with GMP guidelines driving their manufacture, and it is time to build your product. In the life science industry, products range the gamut from pH meters, scales, centrifuges, pipettes, thermocyclers, and so on. The importance of such products cannot be understated. For research and medicine, you need products that are reliable.
Manufacturers have the opportunity to make products that are GMP compliant, reliable, efficient, safe, and affordable. Life science products must be assembled in appropriate environments that are clean and held to the highest standards. Once these conditions have been met, they move along the pathway to distribution.
The Third Step: Distribute It!
Distribution, simply put, describes the method by which products are sent to warehouses and retailers. Distributors range in size for their business and for their capability. Good distributors are reliable with a good track record, and compliant with manufacturer quality. Once distributors send off the products, the final step lands in front of the end user.
The Final Step: The End, and a Beginning
The end user can be a company, academic laboratory, research organization, hospital, clinic, or any other facet in life sciences. The goal of the product’s manufacturer is to make absolutely sure that their products have been held to stringent GMP guidelines, they have been tested, they are durable, and they are reliable.
The products must also be validated, calibrated, and standardized. There are many services that provide validation, calibration, and standardization. Some are in-house, and some use a third party. The end user needs a product that can be counted upon to fight disease, discover new therapies, improve the food supply, and other vastly crucial needs.
The final step with the end user therefore opens up a partnership. Choosing a provider to service and calibrate research and equipment assets becomes paramount. Learn how Qualer can help: https://www.qualer.com.