How Peachtree BioResearch Solutions pivoted to 100% virtual audits with ZenQMS
About Peachtree BioResearch Solutions
Peachtree BioResearch Solutions is a diverse and knowledgeable contract research organization (CRO) headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, with a distributed team in over 20 states. Peachtree’s aim is to deliver excellent clinical development services and resourcing solutions that allow their clients to complete clinical trials efficiently and cost-effectively.
As an in-demand CRO, Peachtree BioResearch Solutions manages audits for multiple on-going trials and new sponsor assessments. Until recently, if you walked into their offices, you would find rows of oak cabinets, each organized with hundreds of files and thousands of documents. At the time, they were facing the difficult task of trying to stay compliant on a paper-based system with a team spread across the country.
Additionally, the physical nature of their data files negatively affected their ability to host their on-site audits simultaneously. Peachtree’s audits would regularly stretch into stressful, three-day-long events, with employees having to hunt down physical copies of specific SOPs and training record requests somewhere inside those same oak cabinets.
It was clear that a paper-based system was no longer working. It was time for an electronic quality management system (eQMS) that could more elegantly manage the access and life cycle for these critical files, while also supporting end points for training and process management.
As the Senior Director of Technical Operations at Peachtree, and a former CRO consultant, Joel Stephens identifies new technologies that will support its goals and help implement and validate those systems. If Peachtree was going to make the transition from paper to an eQMS, Joel expected the new system to meet a number of criteria, including the ability to host virtual audits to survive the daily audits from sponsors. That’s why they turned to ZenQMS.
“ZenQMS has made our lives a lot easier, especially with how we conduct audits. It’s so easy to find the information—we do a simple search and then download or print. The auditors review the documentation and it's bulletproof.” - Joel Stephens, Senior Director of Technical Operations at Peachtree BioResearch Solutions
In addition to the time and resources they’ve saved by hosting virtual audits, Peachtree has also reaped additional benefits by switching to ZenQMS. From a risk-based approach, their cloud-based system has eliminated any worry over managing server security and maintenance:
“We did not want the risks associated with maintaining servers onsite. It's always a hot point for auditors because they want to see your security and maintenance around those systems. That's why we decided we would have everything in the cloud.”
One unintended benefit of switching to a cloud-based eQMS was that when Peachtree went fully remote during COVID-19, almost nothing about their process changed. They were able to add additional clients effortlessly, unlike competing CROs who were not prepared to pivot to a virtual environment as quickly.
For Peachtree, ZenQMS was a great match for a number of reasons, including price and collaboration capabilities, and the fact that it was purpose-built for compliance also stood out:
“One of the things that impressed us during our decision-making process was that ZenQMS's leadership team came from the quality world and designed the system around meeting compliance,” says Joel. “We felt confident because we knew that the folks who designed ZenQMS knew a lot about quality assurance.”
ZenQMS's expertise extended to the implementation and validation experience. Joel noted how critical it was that ZenQMS's Quality department guided their onboarding and provided the User Acceptance Test (UAT) scripts to support their validation. The Peachtree BioResearch Solutions team used the UAT scripts and added their annotations to customize it.
Between virtual audits, security, validation, and price, it was overwhelmingly clear to Peachtree BioResearch Solutions that ZenQMS was the right choice for them. If your CRO is looking for the same capabilities and benefits from an eQMS, reach out to our team to learn more.