What should companies be thinking about today?
I think the good news is that the industry really is tuning in and participating in the key activities, like the EPCglobal
Health and Life Sciences business action group. In that way, many of the industry associations have established the right
forms for understanding all of the issues and challenges. I don't know that this can be any huge surprise, unless, of course,
they're not participating in these types of forums, in which case there will be perhaps a very rude awakening for those who
just haven't been paying attention.
As with any new technology or a change in processes in business and supply chain relationships, there come different challenges
around change management, training, and organizational models. Those are the kinds of things that aren't as talked up right
now as some of the other issues around technology, price performance, pedigree consistency, and authentication.
James Hintlian is the lead partner for Accenture's Health & Life Sciences Supply Chain practice, based in Boston. He currently is leading
Accenture's pharmaceutical Electronic Product Code (EPC) and ePedigree industry program. He also is a special advisor to the
EPCglobal in Healthcare Business Action Group, and is a member of the editorial advisory board for Supply Chain Management Review. He holds a master of engineering and an MBA.