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The public health crisis and overnight switch to a fully remote working model this year has forced us all to re-imagine the way that businesses interact with one another. As Government and industry come together to fight the spread of COVID-19, it is crucial that we re-evaluate our existing communication processes and breakdown unnecessary siloes and inefficiencies. Government agencies have already launched innovative campaigns to identify industry-leading technologies and accelerate modernization efforts, such as NIH’s All of Us campaign and FDA’s Precision Data Challenge.

While these campaigns help target pressing issues, we must also use this critical moment in the world to improve the status quo and to foster long-standing relationships between private and public sector partners. This is the only way to ensure that technology modernization needs are addressed and sustained in the future.

Bridging the Gap

While Government contractors have been supporting Federal agencies for decades, Government projects are often separated from similar work in the private sector due to a variety of factors including security, speed of implementation, priorities, and funding. Security concerns withstanding, companies that serve both Federal and private sector clients have a unique obligation to serve as a collaborative intermediary between Federal agencies and the industries they regulate. At Capgemini a recently formalized ‘Bridge the Gap’ initiative between Federal Health & Technology and Life Sciences groups was designed to increase communication between public and private sector clients, bringing best practices to both groups, and delivering solutions across the commercial and Government industries.

The best practices below highlight some of the lessons learned that can be leveraged to accelerate collaboration between the private and public sectors.

Understand the Interaction Between Government and Industry

There is often more cross-over between Federal and commercial clients than initially assumed. For example, pharmaceutical companies submitting applications to the FDA through web-based portals can have valuable input about how to improve the webforms. By taking the time to understand pharma pain points, FDA can identify shared experiences and challenges, creating an opportunity to serve both stakeholder groups more effectively.

Acknowledge that Timelines are Different

Government agencies are purposefully structured to move much slower than the private sector to accommodate for factors such as security and budget. Recognize that emerging technologies from the private sector will need to be implemented differently in Government agencies and plan additional time to support clients who must review, approve, and implement emerging technologies.

Define Your Value Add as the Intermediary

Each consulting firm has a unique expertise and set of capabilities that are leveraged to support Government and industry clients. Each firm should identify the best tools that they can leverage to serve as a supportive intermediary to both Government and industry. At Capgemini, we have leveraged our customized tools and methodologies built specifically for Life Sciences clients and presented them to our Federal health clients such as FDA and VA. These tools already incorporate features that consider industry-specific regulations, such as HIPPA, which allows us to better cater to our clients’ needs.

Breaking down the unnecessary silos that separate private and public sector clients will ensure that emerging technologies are not only made available to the Government, but also implemented at an accelerated rate. It is industry’s responsibility to use this pivotal moment not only to address COVID-19, but more importantly, to ensure that we are better equipped to serve our clients in the future.

About Us
Capgemini Government Solutions is a subsidiary of Capgemini Global and partners with Government agencies to federalize cutting edge technology. With more than 1,500 health industry experts, Capgemini Life Sciences is a leader in providing clients with business solutions that prioritize patient outcomes and play an active role in supporting pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, insurers, and other public health stakeholders. Formalizing the relationship between the two parts of our company have already been substantial. The ‘Bridge the Gap’ initiative has helped us to identify shared experiences between our clients and leverage one another’s solutions. It has also sparked the interest of our government and life sciences clients, who have expressed a desire to work with one another through a shared partner such as Capgemini. To learn more about Capgemini’s ‘Bridge the Gap’ initiative, contact Deak Jenkins (deak.jenkins@capgemini-gs.com) for Government Partner information and Eliza Silvester (eliza.silvester@capgemini.com) for Commercial Partners.

About Deak Jenkins
Deak Jenkins is the account lead for Capgemini Government Solution’s Federal Health & Technology practice and the program manager for the FDA account. He advises Government agencies in strategic IT Modernization planning and project execution, with a focus on leveraging cloud-based platforms. Additionally he is part of the Capgemini Government Solutions Salesforce leadership team and serves on Capgemini Government Solutions’ COVID-19 Response Taskforce.

About Eliza Silvester
As Principal of Capgemini’s Life Sciences business, Eliza Silvester is the account lead for one of Capgemini’s major pharma clients and a subject matter expert (SME) for pharmacovigilance/regulatory compliance. She is passionate about helping big pharma achieve innovation and patient centricity for the benefit of patients and is especially proud this year to be leading development of Capgemini’s COVID-19 thought leadership response.

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