Legal Ops Management for a Pharmaceutical Giant

The customer is one of India’s top 5 pharmaceutical companies with revenues upwards of USD 1 billion dollars, offices spread across 34 countries and having a strength of 16000+ employees.

Shashwat Sikka
Shashwat Sikka

About the Customer

The customer is one of India’s top 5 pharmaceutical companies with revenues upwards of USD 1 billion dollars, offices spread across 34 countries, and having a strength of 16000+ employees. They have a portfolio of over 22 brands and OTC drugs. Being a consumer-facing business involves managing a sizable portfolio of intellectual property, managing key documents like contracts, notices, licenses, certifications, and addressing a large number of cross-functional queries.

The Challenge

The biggest challenge for the customer's legal & secretarial team is to manage its ever-growing Intellectual property portfolio with minimal external dependence, manage its company-wide compliances, notices, certifications, licenses, address queries arising from cross-functional teams and create a repository of the knowledge base for the entire organization. They have around 1800+ trademarks, 100+ unique types of compliances, 40+ licenses, 750+ contracts, 900+ certifications to manage and track, and around 100+ monthly queries to address. Following are the key challenges faced by them:

  • Tracking and maintaining the status of their IP applications.
  • Identifying deadlines and work which needs to be done for their IP portfolio.
  • Tracking which applications are infringing on their portfolio and filing for the opposition in a timely manner.
  • Maintaining a master of all possible types of compliances that are applicable for their business and defining the nature, frequency, timing, and assignment of these compliances.
  • Monitoring the status of the due compliances company-wide and reviewing the work done.
  • Maintaining a repository of their key documents like licenses, certifications, tenders, retainers, insurances in a single place so they can be made available whenever required.
  • Tracking key events like status, renewal, nature, specifics, expiry for these key documents.
  • Having a central system to address cross-functional queries between departments for a streamlined and timely resolution of queries.
  • Ensuring transparency and accountability within the organization.
  • Lack of visibility to senior management on key metrics and actionable.

The in-house legal team had limited visibility on their IP portfolio. They were heavily reliant on their external law firms for all information around their IP portfolio, any delays/incompetence from external law firms has a direct impact on their business. All employees inside their organization worked in silos with no central system to guide or monitor them on what work needs to be done around compliances and key documents leading to inefficiencies. For queries involving cross-functional expertise for resolution, employees had to interact with different teams on different channels which led to a lack of accountability and longer resolution times. Furthermore, this led to the senior management having poor visibility on key metrics and areas which need to strengthen.
The Solution

To address the problem of lack of centralization, the customer has implemented Provakil’s Intellectual property, compliance, Key document & Query management system across its organization. Following are the key components of the system which they are using:

  • Intellectual property management- They can now manage their Intellectual property portfolio which includes trademarks, patents, designs, and copyrights via Provakil’s intellectual property management suite which has helped them in reducing their dependence on external law firms and improving productivity.
  • Automatic updates for IP Applications- Customers' IP team gets automatic updates on the status of their applications for Trademark, Design and Copyright status changes, documents, and other information, and deadlines on IP filings in the registry.
  • Compliance Calendar- They have a fully automated compliance calendar created for tracking deadlines for new filings and renewals in the registry for their portfolio.
  • Repository- All important information regarding IP assets including documents, descriptions, etc. is stored in the system by syncing the data with the registry and allowing users to add data.
  • IP Watch- With Provakil’s artificial intelligence technology customers' IP teams can find potential infringements to a company’s Intellectual property portfolio by finding similarities between the applications filed by other proprietors and automatically notifying the users of potential infringements.
  • IP Search- During filling for new applications, the customer’s IP team can use Provakil’s artificial intelligence to perform automated searches in the IP registry to identify existing applications held by other entities and then modify/file their applications based on the data to avoid any objections.
  • Compliance management- The compliance management system is designed to ensure that customers are compliant with the central and local regulations applicable to their business and establishments. It maps all compliances to the officers responsible for their execution and provides centralized dashboards to track the compliance.
  • Compliance Master- A centralized repository of all statutory and regulatory compliances categorized by function, frequency, and responsible authority.
  • Organizational Maps- A mapping of all companies employees roles and locations where compliances have to be performed and tagging of relevant employees to those compliances
  • Compliance Workspace- A compliance workspace for all the employees which shows them all the compliance due by them with deadlines and required details for those compliances
  • Dashboards and Reports- Detailed dashboards across the organization to track the completion of compliances by location, business division, regulatory bodies, etc.
  • Notifications and reminders- Regular notifications and reminders to users for completion of the compliance and updating of necessary proof on the system.
  • Compliance Checks- Auditing of the compliance by reporting managers before the compliances are marked as complete.
  • Key document management- With Provakil’s system they can manage their licenses, insurances, certificates, notices, contracts, tenders, retainers :
    • Repository- Central repository of all licenses, insurances, certificates, notices, contracts, tenders, retainers which has all information like dates, copies, commercial terms, etc.
    • Search- They can search, filter, sort these important documents as per different sets of information available in the system.
    • Reminders and alerts - They get timely reminders and alerts for key events like renewal, expiry, survival, etc.
  • Query and knowledge management and Internal Collaboration- Provakil system has the necessary tools for internal team collaboration, cross-department interaction, and Knowledge sharing.
  • Query management- With centralized query management employees can raise, track and address different queries arising during their work that require cross-functional interaction/coordination.
  • Knowledge management- These queries can be created as a knowledge base and made available for other departments/team members for future usage three by saving time on redundancies and duplicity.
  • MIS Reporting- Provakil system includes multi-level reporting for different stakeholders. The senior management has visibility on different processes, metrics, compliances at an aggregate and department and sub-department level. There are reports to track team performance. Reporting is done on time taken for by departments, resources, types, etc.

Key Takeaways:

  • Over 2000+ IP portfolios managed, lead to a reduction in dependency with external agencies and a better understanding of the portfolio.
  • Around 1300+ compliances were triggered and monitored thereby identifying diligence and quality of work of the employees.
  • On average 100+ queries were raised and resolved on the system thereby reducing time for resolution and increasing business productivity.