Sparta Connection 2022: A New Leadership Team, Challenges and Opportunities Abound

LNS Research was privileged to attend Sparta Connection 2022 at the JW Marriott Resort and Spa in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, earlier this summer. This year’s event was the first live, in-person event for Sparta since 2019.

Dr. Oxana Pickeral, CEO of Sparta Systems at Sparta Connection 2022

Sparta Connection kicked off with Dr. Oxana Pickeral, CEO of Sparta Systems, delivering an opening keynote laying out a few themes that should be interesting to attendees and those considering the Trackwise product. Quality as a value driver and going beyond compliance to Proactive Quality were the main themes. 

Sparta Systems offers Enterprise Quality Management System Software primarily to the regulated Life Sciences industry. 

The New Parent: Honeywell

This was the first in-person event since Honeywell announced the purchase of Sparta Systems in December 2020. A few Honeywell folks were participating in certain aspects of the event but not many. This may have been, in part, because Honeywell had their Honeywell User Group event in Orlando only a few weeks prior to this event. In future years, we would like to see more Honeywell executives at the event to tell a more integrated end-to-end Life Sciences story.

Beyond Compliance

The messaging about going beyond compliance resonates across industries and is related to a significant issue that comes out in our Quality 4.0 research, which is that in most businesses, the Quality organization is too focused on compliance. In Life Sciences, this focus on compliance gets an outsized share of Quality’s attention.

Our research shows that Quality management issues are the number one concern for Life Sciences companies. “Going beyond compliance” is a big challenge for Quality Teams. With calls to action like “Putting Quality in the driver’s seat,” “Quality creating value,” and “Proactive Quality,” Sparta Systems sparks curiosity about what those things might mean operationally and regarding system enhancements.

Sparta rolled out a host of new capabilities for both the on-premise version of Trackwise and Trackwise Digital, their cloud-based offering. There were also mentions and demonstrations of their AI solution,

Trackwise is the on-premise version of their Enterprise Quality Management System (EQMS) and Trackwise Digital is the cloud version of that same system. Trackwise Digital is based on the Salesforce cloud platform so updates are regular and Sparta claims validation is performed by them, reducing the burden on users to conduct their own validations, a barrier to upgrades in software system deployments. This is only one advantage of the cloud-based version of the software.

TrackWise Digital Landscape - Validation Diagram

Image Source: Sparta Systems

Trackwise has the traditional QMS processes you would expect it to have. Such as:

      • CAPA

      • Supplier Quality Management

      • Audit

      • Risk Management

      • Deviations

      • Quality Events

      • Complaints

      • Document Management

      • Training Management for Documents

      • Management Review

These processes are modular so the user can go forward with a particular module but delay implementation of lower priority capabilities based on their own particular business needs. Dozens of users told stories about using a particular module but not others and using Trackwise modules outside of the core purpose, suggesting that there is inherent flexibility in the platform.

There are several new features to Trackwise Digital. These enhancements are targeted at making it easier for users to accomplish the administrative tasks associated with Quality management in Life Sciences. The list of new features is:

      • Document Compare

      • Centralized Task Management

      • Full-Text Search

      • Google Doc Integration

      • Intelligent Forms and Workflow Required Fields

      • Family Print Reports

      • Family Tree Navigation

      • Global Decision Trees for Complaint Management

      • Risk Management using AI

We were particularly interested in their application of AI. Brief demonstrations of the risk management module and AI-driven insights show where Sparta Systems is going with the application of this new-to-them technology. The AI use case shown in was for the categorization of complaints and narrowing of possible root causes. A company with large amounts of data generated over a long period of time would benefit from this application of AI, however, a company without that history would likely struggle. Growing the use cases for AI over time will add more value to users of the process’s resident within Trackwise and Trackwise Digital.

Delivering the Promise

Sparta connectThemes of Quality as a value driver and putting Quality in the driver’s seat are universal and can be tied to the features and enhancements envisioned and presented. The new features make administrative tasks easier and less onerous. Those features will certainly help Trackwise and Trackwise Digital users reduce their non-value added time associated with management tasks, which is certainly valuable and certainly one goal of implementing an Enterprise Quality Management System.

Proactive Quality, however, requires connection to a robust amount of contextual data that informs the processes resident within the EQMS. This is a future development opportunity for Sparta Systems and Honeywell as is the expansion of use cases for their AI tools in

Trackwise Digital should be considered for the on-premise Trackwise users as updates and upgrades are easier to manage there than in the on-premise installations. Some other advantages for Trackwise Digital include:

      • Full validation by platform owners except for any customizations that users configure.

      • Receive upgraded features earlier and easier than the On-Premises.

We hoped to learn more about the specifics of Honeywell Connected Life Sciences and what that means for Sparta Systems and Honeywell. Perhaps this is where proactive Quality lives and moves Life Sciences Quality closer to the general mission of Quality to prevent problems and issues.

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All entries in this Industrial Transformation blog represent the opinions of the authors based on their industry experience and their view of the information collected using the methods described in our Research Integrity. All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

All entries in this Industrial Transformation blog represent the opinions of the authors based on their industry experience and their view of the information collected using the methods described in our Research Integrity. All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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