Live From DIA 2014: Audio Clip
Jesse Jones and Nicole McPherson in Quality Assurance and Sales talk about their experience at the Drug Information Association (DIA) 2014 meeting in San Diego. From shoe fashion advice to tips on how to win contests at neighboring booths, this quickcast is packed full of fun trade show tidbits.
Lex Raleigh: Hello. This is Lex Raleigh, and I'm very pleased to have a special Cenduit Quickcast today. Today we're at the exhibition center of DIA 2014. I am very pleased to be joined by Jesse Jones today. Jesse, how are you?
Jesse Jones: Doing great Lex, thanks. How about yourself?
Lex Raleigh: I'm doing pretty well. You're our manager of quality assurance, but before we start talking about a few details, Jesse, I need to give you a hard time. First of all, about a racing game. One of the other exhibitors here at DIA has a racing game, and for a while you were leading. You were so far ahead, but now, you dropped back to third. Even worse, I understand one of our rock star sales executives just kicked you off the leaderboard.
Jesse Jones: Yeah, that's right Lex. It's tough to take, but to be honest it's all part of my strategy. I wanted to be like the slow, silent stalker. You know what I mean? I want to kind of come in at the last second and then take over my crown. No worries at all.
Lex Raleigh: What do you think about our booth design? For folks listening to us online, we've got a big show display. We have a little bit of a circus theme; we've got a Zoltar machine telling fortunes in the middle, and we're giving away ice cream. How's the booth been for you?
Jesse Jones: The booth's been incredible. The atmosphere's a lot of fun. We've had a lot of foot traffic, definitely getting a lot of attention. It's very unique and creative. I hear lots of people saying that this is one of the best, most creative booths they've ever seen. It's been great.
Lex Raleigh: Definitely hats off to our marketing department. I also noticed that you brought one of the Cenduit audit iPads with you. Can you talk a little about that?
Jesse Jones: Yeah, absolutely! I haven't had the chance to really expose it a whole lot, but it's always great to have the flexibility. We have the whole quality system available on the iPad. We use Dropbox. We can pull up the quality system documents within there. If someone wants to ask about our procedures, we can show it to them live. It's great having flexibility and showing off our technology as well.
Lex Raleigh: Right, yeah it's great that you have that and everything is really at our fingertips. It's proven good in our audits, and useful to have on-site here with us as well. You attended one of the speaker presentations about CSV. Me, I'm from more of a technical background so when I think CSV, I'm thinking comma separated value. I think when you say CSV you're thinking about Computerized System Validation. Can you talk a little more about that?
Jesse Jones: Yeah, exactly right. That's funny. It was a good presentation actually. It was three different speakers: one representing a supplier perspective, actually one of our competitors, another from a CRO, or the industry, and then one from the FDA. It was interesting to get three different speakers' perspectives on expectations, some of the newer trends within CSV, that sort of thing. One of the take-home messages I think, or one of the themes that was really coming through, was that CSV, within the industry, is somewhat not well-defined. You'll get every company kind of does it differently. The FDA recognizes that and so they provide a little bit of guidance about, as long as you have the major controls in place that's fine. It was just interesting to hear that we all do it differently. The expectations have evolved over time. There's a general frustration from the suppliers that we get audited by so many different clients and inspectors. It would be nice if we could share and pool that information. It was nice to hear that other suppliers are having some of the same challenges that we face.
Lex Raleigh: Did anyone speak very specifically about risk? That's something that you, I, and Jim Graffam, the VP of quality have chatted a few times about, balancing what's required for CSV based on the risk involved in the implementations. Did that topic come up or is it on your mind these days?
Jesse Jones: Absolutely! That's another one that came up a lot. Really the purpose of CSV is not to produce a lot of documentation, which I know you feel the pain of plenty yourself. Really the purpose is not just to go through this exercise and dot the Is, cross the Ts, that sort of thing. Really it's to promote really quality software. It's not just about being compliant, producing documentation. Definitely the concept of risk and making sure you're doing things to mitigate the risk, and not just going through a worthless exercise, that definitely came across as well.
Lex Raleigh: Right. Here's a piece of advice for you Jesse. As a quality expert, I think you need to go over and talk to the racing guys and make sure that their racing software is performing the way it should. Because with you leading by as much as you were, and now all the way off the leaderboard, I don't know there might be something a little screwy going on.
Jesse Jones: I'm with you there. I might have to do a little audit. That's a good point, Lex. I'm curious about their audit trail, and whether or not there's been adequate security, data integrity. These are all valid questions.
Lex Raleigh: Exactly. Go over there and flash your quality manager badge and ask to see the documentation. That puts a little fear in them.
Jesse Jones: I like that, I want to see if this has been validated or not for intended use.
Lex Raleigh: Right, there we go.
Jesse Jones: I like it.
Lex Raleigh: Well Jesse, it's been a pleasure talking with you and hope you do well. We'll look forward to the final results later today.
Jesse Jones: Thanks Lex, appreciate it.
Lex Raleigh: Continuing our series of special DIA 2014 exhibition Quickcasts, I'm pleased to welcome Nicole to the show. Hi, Nicole. How are you?
Nicole McPherson: I'm good thanks. How are you doing?
Lex Raleigh: I'm doing pretty well. Now is it just me, or did I detect a little bit of an accent there?
Nicole McPherson: G'day, mate! Yeah, there is a little bit of an accent there, yes, Australia and UK.
Lex Raleigh: That is so great. How's the conference been as far as the folks you talk to and anyone you've been interacting with?
Nicole McPherson: Really good, yeah. I didn't think there'd be many people from Europe here, but there has been. A lot have stopped by the booth, and got some good leads and people to follow up with. It's great. Really good.
Lex Raleigh: Fantastic, we should mention that you do business development for us. You're really interested in folks from your home market. As you said you've seen a few of them here, but we were chatting just before the show here about your secret tricks. What are your secret tricks for spotting a potential client on the way to the booth here?
Nicole McPherson: I do have a few. Having lived in Europe for ten years, I can now say that I can pick any European from about a hundred meters away based on their shoes.
Lex Raleigh: Wow! It's all in the shoes.
Nicole McPherson: It's all in the shoes. If there's any kind of brogue, or tanned leather, they have to be European.
Lex Raleigh: Fantastic! Nicole, what do you think about our Zoltar machine?
Nicole McPherson: I love Zoltar. Big is actually one of my favorite movies. I've seen it nearly a hundred times I think, love Tom Hanks. Yeah, it's awesome having it here. People love it; it's been a massive hit.
Lex Raleigh: How do you feel about our booth this year? We've had a lot of talk about it. We see it has gotten a creative buzz. Has it been successful from your opinion? Has it done what you needed it to do to help you?
Nicole McPherson: Absolutely, pretty much everyone that walks past says how much they love the booth, and that we should win an award. I couldn't be happier with how it's gone. It's awesome. I'm excited to see what we'll do next year based on this.
Lex Raleigh: Fantastic, I think the pressure's on. I think it will be hard for us to top it.
Nicole McPherson: Yes, it will.
Lex Raleigh: Great Nicole, it was a pleasure chatting with you.
Nicole McPherson: You too.
Lex Raleigh: I look forward to getting European shoe advice in the future.
Nicole McPherson: Awesome, I can totally help with that.
Lex Raleigh: Fantastic. This is Lex Raleigh and it has been another Cenduit Quickcast.