Interview of Mickaël, Manager ALTEN Belgium (Extract from 2014 Annual Report)
What are the main stakes in pharmaceutical companies?
The search and discovery of new medicine and vaccines are the main challenges to meet the patients’ and healthcare professionals’ needs. The pharmaceutical sector remains a very competitive market due to the increase of emerging markets, and the R&D investments allow to keep a competitive advantage. The production of new products is submitted to statutory requirements under the control of the authorities (FDA, AMM, ANSM etc.). To be able to assure the demand in vaccines and medicine, pharmaceutical companies ceaselessly have to guarantee an optimal quality of their products and process to meet their commitments and the requirements of the sector.
On which projects do they request ALTEN?
ALTEN accompanies its customers on engineering, quality, production and information systems, we allow them to concentrate on their core business. As example, in the quick progress of the epidemic EBOLA in 2014, one of our customers developed as a matter of urgency a vaccine which should be marketed in 2016. To do it, several of our engineers intervene on the qualification and the validation of equipment (IQ / OQ / PQ) to produce this potential vaccine. Further to an inspection FDA, one of our customers was submitted to a number of observations, which obliged him to set up a very fast strategy of intervention for the resolution of the found problems. ALTEN thus accompanied this customer in a record time through its engineers and pharmacists on the treatment and resolution of deviations (abnormal event arisen on the production line) then the implementation of CAPA (corrective actions). This type of intervention is not so obvious because it asks for GMP (Global Manufacturing Practices) knowledge in a sterile environment, and the capacity to intervene in a climate always more demanding. Finally ALTEN intervenes on other activities, such as Supply Chain, purchases of raw materials, application and documentary development, and finally on financial reporting.
What are the strengths of ALTEN?
Due to its international presence, ALTEN assures a strong closeness with its customers. In the pharmaceutical sector, our teams are capable to intervene in Belgium then in Switzerland for the same customer, in order to follow the project until the end. Our capacity of recruitment is also a real competitive advantage. The candidates available on the market of the pharmaceutical industry are requested and few, thus it is necessary to know how to propose them interesting projects and international career. In this context, ALTEN set up a transnational cell of recruitment dedicated to this type of profile. . ALTEN being more and more a leading player on this sector, our consultants are today our first ambassadors both for new projects as for new hiring. The cooptation plays a major role, 20 % of the new incomers arising from this process. This is the way we are capable gathering, in record time, a team of more than 30 qualified engineers.
What are the perspectives and opportunities for ALTEN in the next months?
ALTEN is partner with six of the biggest pharmaceutical companies in Belgium, in France, in Switzerland and in Germany. The lightning development known in Belgium these last years allows us to be serene with concerning our capacity to grow in these countries. Our transnational model remains an asset for customers who try ceaselessly to optimize their suppliers’ panel without neglecting the quality of intervention. Finally, “Medical Technologies” will not miss to be one of pillars of growth for the group ALTEN in the coming years.