Expert Feedback Influences Innovation, Product DevelopmentBy Miriam Bello | Wed, 12/02/2020 - 11:57
Q: How do your solutions adapt to the different needs of the life sciences sector?
A: Our strongest market in life sciences is the pharmaceutical sector, mainly laboratories that develop drugs and those that focus on quality control. We also work on research projects, which in Mexico are mostly basic research projects done mainly at research centers. Brazil and Mexico are just behind the US, Canada and China on the company’s priority list because of the size and growth in R&D in these markets. Mexico has always been important for our growth on the continent.
Q: How involved is the country in Waters Corporation’s new developments and products?
A: Depending on the product, Mexico can have a very active participation but it will also depend on the stage of the development. If it is a new product, our Mexican office can work with the client to try to determine their needs to create solutions that meet all their expectations. However, participation varies between consumables and laboratory equipment. Our collaborators are always asked for feedback regarding existing solutions to see how these have been working and to look for ways of improving existing products. In Mexico, we have around 70 collaborators who have been working with us for close to 25 years. These experts have a lot of say when developing new products or innovating in our portfolio because of their vast knowledge in the field.
Waters maintains close communication with clients to receive and apply their feedback. We are interested in being part of their operations, to improve our services and always offer them the best solutions. We have had clients that trust us with their first product models, meaning that we work alongside them from the design of the product to the trials.
Q: What added value does Waters Corporation offer to complement its solutions portfolio?
A: In the niche of laboratory instrumentation, support service is one of the strongest differentiators. Waters Corporation significantly invests in the development of protocols and processes, in staff training and keeping our members up to date.
Q: What has been your most successful product or service in Mexico?
A: Bioaccord is one of the products that we designed especially for the pharmaceutical area, which is intended to support the development and trials of a product. We also have high resolution products that focus on mass spectrometry at hospitals and research centers such as the INCMNSZ, INMEGEN, CINVESTAV or the UANL, as well as pharmaceuticals like Probiomed and the National School for Biological Sciences.
Q: How have your products and services been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic?
A: Our biggest challenge has been logistics. For us, the pandemic was divided in three stages. During the first two months, uncertainty and ignorance ruled as companies and clients tried to understand what needed to change while still remaining operational. Time determined who could do remote work and what were the upcoming needs regarding the pandemic. Seventy percent of our staff remained working in the field, while the rest migrated to a home office model. The second stage brought logistics disruptions as the pandemic’s impact started to be felt. In Mexico, this is still complex due to the traffic light system that is being used in each state, which means different rules for everything depending on the color. This primarily impacted our work trips and our presential visits in different states. Our clients have been very flexible and understanding about mobility limitations, which has helped maintain continuity. The last stage is the new normality that has yet to come.
We started offering training online and with a hybrid model that included presential visits and online courses. All our instruments require practical training but we have found creative ways to help our clients while avoiding contact. All of this is thanks to technological tools.
Q: What are the near-term goals for Waters Corporation in Mexico?
A: Our priority is the safety of our collaborators and our clients. We have been actively tracing any possible case to avoid contagion. Another priority is to ensure business continuity. This pandemic has put us all in an unknown place but we have accepted the challenge and responded to the new reality. It is key to maintain financial strength and flexibility for payments to keep moving. The whole country is at different stages. Mexico City has started its economic reactivation and we have experienced growth. However, we want to accelerate that recovery by offering the best products and launching news ones.
Waters Corporation is committed to fighting COVID-19. Our global research centers in Europe and the US are actively participating in vaccine development and drug trials. We have a special collaboration with AstraZeneca, which is one of the main contenders for a COVID-19 vaccine, and we are very proud of this effort.
Waters Corporation is a specialty measurement company focused on improving health and well-being through high-value analytical technologies. Waters operates in 35 countries and offers its products in over 100 countries