Delivering effective business services

Since 2018, we have transformed business services at Novartis to better enable our people to execute on our strategy and deliver on our purpose. Through these efforts, we have improved productivity and user satisfaction while reducing our cost base and expanding our service offerings.

In 2021, we made further progress by creating a new organization called Customer & Technology Solutions (CTS), which combines the global scale of our business services functions with the transformative nature of our enterprise digital teams. The aim is to deliver services and solutions that drive value across Novartis and enable the transformation of our enterprise. Over the next several years, CTS is expected to continue to improve productivity to drive profitable growth.

Over the next several years, CTS is expected to continue to improve productivity to drive profitable growth

CTS has around 12 000 employees located in over 40 countries and across five global service centers, with offerings spanning technology, facilities, finance, human resources, procurement, consulting, data science and artificial intelligence (AI).

Key focus areas include upgrading and simplifying our global enterprise resource planning systems. This multiyear project, which started in 2020, will help Novartis leverage digital technology at an even greater scale. The goal is to significantly simplify our core processes, capabilities and systems to provide greater flexibility and support to our business operations.

CTS teams are also helping to simplify the employee experience at Novartis. For example, we have introduced an AI-based virtual assistant to support employees with technology- and human resource-related queries. The tool will be expanded in the coming years to include all other functions.

We are also accelerating the use of technologies such as cognitive robotic process automation to improve productivity, enhance remote assistance, and enable employees to focus their time on high-impact tasks. For example, more than 1 million transactions that account for 75 000 hours of manual, repetitive work in functions such as human resources, finance and drug development are now done in a fraction of the time through AI-enabled automation.