IDBS E-WorkBook Suite being used in a lab. (Source: IDBS)Inventiva, a recent spin-off from Abbott, is a French biotech company specializing in running and managing integrated drug discovery partnerships from target validation up to clinical candidate selection. As a growing business with over 100 experienced employees, Inventiva quickly realized that it would benefit from having a more integrated data processing system across its multiple laboratories.
Achieving User Buy-In
To support its ambitions, Inventiva looked for a platform that would increase data processing automation and collaboration between its Drug Metabolism and Pharmacokinetics (DMPK) labs. The solution was an electronic laboratory notebook that could be used easily across its in vitro, in vivo and bioanalytics laboratories, from the bench to the result database (IDBS E-WorkBook Suite, IDBS, London, UK). 
Ahead of the implementation, Inventiva spent time to define its exact requirements and objectives for the project roll out. It conducted an in-depth review of its processes to identify which areas would benefit most.
“We were looking to streamline our processes and help us work smarter. We wanted to deliver continuous improvement across our research and business processes. Our aim was to increase data quality and efficiency across our entire operations,” said Olivier Lacombe, head of Pharmacokinetics at Inventiva.
After just a few short weeks, technicians were very positive about the changes. Their endorsement was critical to the widespread adoption of the software. Olivier added: “User buy-in was key to the success of the deployment. We generated a positive dynamic within the labs thanks to the new software; this was evidenced from additional requests for additional protocol implementations.”
Collaboration Results in Success 
The project was successfully completed within time and budget as a result of the great working relationship between Inventiva and IDBS. Inventiva has been able to create links between labs as part of a more collaborative approach to its research efforts. It adapted existing protocols and automated workflows for faster experiment preparation and execution while further improving data quality. 
The new approach enables Lacombe and his colleagues to reduce the overall experiment time: “We have dramatically speeded up our data processing, achieved process standardization and gained solid benefits on quality aspects.” Inventiva can now anticipate productivity gains of more than 20% compared to a manual process. 
“Users got quickly adjusted to the new software and lab technicians confirm it is responding to their processes and needs. We are able to increase our level of activity and service to our clients whilst developing new partnerships,” said Lacombe.
The Future of Research Automation 
As part of next steps, Inventiva is planning further research automation across the firm by leveraging their electronic laboratory notebook. 
This continuous transformational journey will also see Inventiva further improve the process time from the execution of an experiment in the lab to a validated and formatted report.
 “We now have the tools to conduct our work in a more centralized, automated and collaborative way. We are spending less time on administration and data management, and can focus on quality, results and science,” said Lacombe.