R&D Trends – When Technology Meets Healthcare
Biotalent News

R&D Trends – When Technology Meets Healthcare

Here at BioTalent I am a part of the medical device team specialising in R&D (Research and Design). My day to day agenda primarily involves speaking to R&D specialists and experts –so naturally I have picked up a thing or two.

One reoccurring theme – the latest trend in R&D is observing how digital technology will impact not only new product development but the entire R&D process as a whole.


Have a look at the diagram below – this is taken from ICON plc website (2019) and demonstrates the latest types of technology currently being used by both small and large companies throughout the life sciences industry.


ICON plc conducted a survey with 350 pharmaceutical and biotech professionals to understand how technology is or will affect R&D productivity. 64% of the people surveyed claimed that digital technology will improve productivity by at least 26%. The diagram shows that 80% of participants will use artificial intelligence and Big Data to improve the overall R&D performance.

Artificial intelligence (AI) in the medical industry is a computer-generated solution which is as good as or better than one found by a human. By using AI, the risk of human error and problem-solving decreases – this allows companies to generate new products faster and therefore, at a lower cost. Medtronic Chairman and CEO Omar Ishrak was asked about his opinion on the role of machine learning and robotics – he says “Robotics could help standardize outcomes by reducing variability” (Medtronic, 2019). Despite his favourable views on artificial intelligence, he also claims that robotics are very unlikely to replace human physicians because of the valuable data available, which enables us to treat patients effectively.




The diagram above (Statista, 2019) presents statistics taken for the top five companies investing in R&D. The light blue bars show how much companies invested in R&D in 2017 (US dollars) and the dark blue bars show how much the companies estimate to spend in 2024. In conclusion, we can see that companies are highly in favour of spending more on R&D in the foreseeable future, implying that the technology trend will grow in the life sciences industry.

With companies of all sizes heavily investing in R&D the demand for qualified professionals has never been higher. If you are an R&D professional looking to work on ground-breaking projects for either world-leading or smaller enterprises then please feel free to reach out to me on: or visit our website: to find out about our latest opportunities.

Return to news

Take the first step today

Send us your CV/Resume