This Week in Consulting

Wednesday, April 15th 2020

Chemicals & Materials, Please Meet Digital


Right now, scientists are inundated with more information than they can hope to process, and the priority for companies should be providing researchers with the digital tools that help to manage and control data, while increasing the rate of innovation in our time of need.

The Chemical industry has started its digital transformation by generating data, but researchers can’t access and visualize this data in order to improve their work yet.

This Week’s Must Read  is an is an insight piece from Max Petersen about the challenges of digital transformation on R&D in the Chemical Industry.

Read on to Find out More: “Making a material difference – why digital transformation is key to chemical R&D | Max Petersen, Dotmatics for R&DWorld.

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Patrick Thompson, chief information officer at Albemarle, tells how the special chemical company is undergoing digital transformation with S/4HANA and SAP to meet the growth of its customers.


  • Digital platforms in chemicals: The game is on will the winner take all? “An increasing number of chemical companies are applying digital approaches to marketing and sales. One way that’s manifesting itself is in the creation of direct commercial interfaces, or digital platforms. These platforms offer chemicals, plastics, and synthetics across two customer bases: manufacturer to manufacturer (B2B) and manufacturer to consumer (B2C).” What are the key success factors of these digital platforms? What actions can Chemical take to be ahead of the curve? This article explores the potential of digital platforms within the Chemical market. | Marco Moder and Axel Spamann, McKinsey
  • Accelerate Innovation in Specialty Chemical Formulation and Development with Informatics-Derived Knowledge: “Informatics allow a research team to get the most out of the experimental work and obtain structure-activity relationships (SAR) or structure-property-formulation-performance relationships. The informatics solutions, however, must be leveraged within an innovative experimental process.” This article explains how the use of data analytics in Specialty Chemical Formulation  can shorten the innovation cycle and increase the likelihood of success. | PerkinElmer
  • The Intelligent Enterprise for the Chemical Industry: “As industry after industry reexamines its partners and processes in an often-painful search for efficiency, chemical businesses are feeling increasing cost and margin pressure. Still, the companies that can adapt new models and automate their processes have an unprecedented opportunity to have an outsized positive impact.” The author highlights how megatrends and intelligent technologies are affecting the chemical industry and providing new opportunities for growth. | Dr.Thorsten Wenzel, SAP
  • Decarbonizing Heavy Industry: “On the back of country-wide carbon neutrality targets, from nations which heavily feature commodities as a core exports, corporates are beginning to line up with long-term climate strategies and are outlining technology roadmaps. Also, an increasing amount of corporate and government funding is becoming available for industrial decarbonization innovation.” Even if the future of the chemical industry is digital, sustainability will also be an important factor for the competitiveness and survival of companies in the sector. What is the attractiveness of decarbonization? What are the different pathways and challenges?| Louis Brasington, Cleantech Group.


  • P&G sells multimillion-dollar manufacturing plant: “Procter & Gamble Co. has sold its massive manufacturing plant in Kansas but will lease the property for at least the remainder of this year as operations wind down. P&G didn’t disclose the price of the sale of the Kansas plant to New Mill Capital, a California firm specializes in the disposition of manufacturing equipment and real estate.” | Barrett J. Brunsman, Cincinnati Business Courier
  • Pfizer, BioNTech Gear Up To Produce ‘Millions’ Of Covid-19 Vaccine Doses By Year-End: On the hunt for a COVID-19 vaccine, Pfizer and BioNTech are laying plans for manufacturing their candidates for trials—and producing millions of doses if trials succeed. The partners could have “millions” of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine ready to go by year-end if the companies begin human testing as planned by late April, the partners said Thursday.” | Medical Buyer
  • USF Federal Credit Union Donates 300 Meals to Tampa General Hospital Frontline Workers: “USF Federal Credit Union (USF FCU) donated meals to Tampa General Hospital’s (TGH) frontline staff as a thank you for their tireless dedication to keeping the Tampa Bay area safe by battling the spread of coronavirus.  Three hundred healthy meals were prepared and delivered by Harvest Bowl Eatery & Market of Seminole Heights.” |PRNewswire
  • Five ways to keep remote workers happy and committed: During the Covid-19 outbreak, it is essential for leaders to support their workforce so that they can endure this situation and continue delivering high quality work for as long as it takes, regardless of all the obstacles they encounter along the way. Julie Provino, a HR expert and founder of HR consultancy VeryHR, shares five ways how leaders can keep their remote workers happy and productive.” |


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Hélène Laffitte is the CEO of Consulting Quest, a Global Performance-Driven Consulting Platform and author of “Smart Consulting Sourcing”, a step by step guide to getting the best ROI from your consulting. With a blend of experience in Procurement and Consulting, Hélène is passionate about helping Companies create more value through Consulting.

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