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Introducing our latest solution from Körber; the K.Pak Topload Case Packer! Created specifically for the pharmaceutical industry, the K.Pak solution provides operator-friendly machines to complete any production line. Our solution focuses on innovative technology, high-quality design and expert handling and packaging of your product. It’s time to start connecting the dots with Körber!

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How Ferring Pharmaceuticals stepped into the future of pharmaceutical manufacturing with Körber

Hartwig Hönerloh, Associate Director of MES Management of Ferring Pharmaceuticals and Tim Meyer, Team Lead Consulting at Körber, talk about how Körber helped Ferring step into the future of pharmaceutical manufacturing.

In a recent visit from Ferring to our consulting experts at our site in Karlsruhe , we have talked about the introduction of Electronic Batch Recording (EBR) at their site in Kiel, and how it was paramount for their digital transformation. But is this a concept familiar to all? 

If you work in a pharmaceutical manufacturing environment, chances are you have heard the phrase electronic batch recording (EBR) or manufacturing execution system (MES system). You might even have an idea of how they can help your organization. But why should you be adding EBR in your production line? In the words of Hartwig Hönerloh, Associate Director of MES Management of Ferring Pharmaceuticals, “this was a clear step into the into the future for our site in Kiel.” 

A lot of pharmaceutical manufacturing professionals are still skeptical about the implementation of EBR software, due to its complexity. In fact, some are reluctant to implement it, mainly because they are unsure of how significant the process modifications actually are, and the impact they have in their productivity. 

What is Electronic Batch Recording?

It’s all about efficiency

The EBR system is a software that replaces the typical paper batch record and paper-based data collection, with an automated digital solution designed to answer regulatory requirements, reducing errors, and increasing productivity

While some industry professionals might still be indecisive about EBR software and its benefits, it is actually a game changer for pharma manufacturing.  When you transfer information-rich activities from a paper-based solution to digital solutions, you set up your organization for higher productivity, constant quality, and for faster recovery from unplanned events.

As Hönerloh amusingly reveals, “when the system was live after a couple of weeks, the visual inspection operators told me they never want to turn back to paper, they want to keep electronic batch recording.” 

Paper based errors reduced by almost 100%

In the case of Ferring “the initial problem was the error-prone paper-based documentation as well as a lot of production deviations,” Hönerloh explains. By going paperless and embracing the digital transformation of their site in Kiel, Ferring experienced an exponential reduction of production errors, with remarkable and measurable results.

lKörber were the only ones who showed us the entire plan from the beginning, and by convincing us during this time to go from paper to EBR, we reduced production errors by around 25% and paper-based errors almost completely by a 100%.r

By starting in the early stages of the project with the Process Landscape™ methodology, Ferring was able to take full advantage of its benefits. This helped them to structure the work and prepare for the execution, leveraged by a detailed, reliable, and comprehensive picture of the state of the system and its potential for improvement. 

Ferring pharmaceutical manufacturing team posing for the photo next to their EBR system.

The close relationship between both teams and the transparency of the process, was something that Hönerloh considered to be crucial for the success of the project “the working style was, from the very beginning, very open and positive and in the meantime, we performed a close collaboration and a close teamwork.” 

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Pharma 4.0 and the path to digital transformation 

The implementation of a single EBR it’s not a one and done process, and Meyer lays down the groundwork for the future “I think the next steps going forward are to implement EBR for the following production lines as well as helping Ferring to find proper solutions for implementing their own process in a standard MES system,” and this is what Hönerloh appreciated the most “to have a reliable partnership or reliable company which can support us also after finalizing the project, because when switching from a project to a life cycle, you also need support going forward.” 

Nothing would have been possible without the fantastic collaboration and trust from Ferring Pharmaceuticals and their team, and the kind words of Hönerloh “I personally recommend calling Körber and asking for support in a digitalization project,” is a big praise to the work of our consulting experts. 

If you want to know more about this story, we have prepared a case study for you, where we share other tangible and measurable results. You will get to know the ins and outs of how Pharma 4.0 can really support your business thrive

Ready for the future? Download the free case study here.

Case Study Ferring Pharmaceuticals

How Ferring in Germany mastered a milestone on the path to digital manufacturing.

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