Strateos™, is a pioneer in the development of remote access laboratories and lab control software for life science discovery. They automate chemistry, biology, and tissue analysis using closed-loop robotic SmartLab Studios™ that accelerate life science drug discovery programs. The fast-growing startup liberates scientists from managing the complexities of a physical lab, enabling a greater focus on designing experiments, developing new hypotheses and generating reproducible data in an automated fashion. For clients who want to continue using their private physical lab, Strateos makes it’s cloud SmartLab Software™ available to in-house labs.
The Strateos SmartLab platform™ coordinates scientific processes, instruments, and robotics to create a programmable lab that enables unparalleled scale, efficiency, and accuracy for the scientific discovery process. Enabling scale, efficiency, and accuracy for drug discovery is a complicated problem with many moving parts. Robotic labs need to increase productivity and reproducibility, reduce human errors, and improve the scientist, and lab technician user experience. Accelerating new customer acquisition, onboarding and growth are top goals for the fast-growing startup Strateos.
Objectives and Goals for the Zemoso partnership
Strateos kicked off the partnership with Zemoso setting some pretty intense goals:
1. Improve customer experience and internal processing efficiency
New functionality was necessary to improve the features available to customers for conducting experiments, and for internal operators to run those experiments. It is critical that these external and internal processes are efficient for Strateos to be successful.
2. Enabling new product line offering - Automated Synthetic Chemistry
Launching new capabilities to support and accelerate medicinal chemistry workflows as part of the lead optimization discovery process. Including chemical synthesis, purification, and analysis via robotics and automation providing greater reproducibility and reliability than conventional synthetic chemistry approaches without the need to maintain or staff your own laboratory.
Zemoso kicked off the process with self-organized agile pods, led by a highly qualified technical product manager.
Agile teams concentrated on working with existing Strateos teams to achieve customer and stakeholder objectives quickly and reducing ambiguity for the business and the customers. Each team worked as an integral, extended arm of a product manager using modern agile practices.
Some of the practices that helped integrate within existing Strateos development process included:
Map, embrace, integrate, accelerate execution based on existing architecture
Agile certified managers and technical leads trained in Zemoso’s proprietary process facilitated mapping workshops with key Strateos stakeholders so that Zemoso teams could embrace and align to Strateos’ existing architecture, processes and deployment methodologies.
The goal of any Zemoso workshop is to better align with the stakeholders, to ensure both acceleration and seamless integration with existing teams, design, and code. The teams had a high degree of ownership so that at the end of the day there was no line between Zemoso teams and Strateos teams, it was all one team executing towards shared goals with a high degree of accountability and execution.
User story mapping and seamless communication
Apart from regular agile ceremonies such as grooming, stand ups and retrospectives, constant communication, reports were presented to stakeholders for early course correction. Internal user story mapping workshops, journey map workshops were conducted to ensure that the Zemoso agile teams were rapidly integrated to become an extended arm for Strateos teams.
Continuous metric improvements to increase productivity and quality
Metrics such as team velocity, test and feature coverage are continuously shared with project managers to identify areas of opportunities. Debriefing decks were shared with Strateos engineering leadership and product/project management on actions taken to accelerate execution.
Short incremental builds and releases to enable early feedback
Strateos operates a full CI/CD pipeline with continuous releases that are periodically reviewed with customers to gain feedback. To work within this environment, Zemoso delivered continuous features with a high degree of quality hand in hand with Strateos engineers.
Zemoso’s team was able to rapidly assess the challenges Strateos was facing. We helped onboard new customers, improve both customer and operator experience, launch a new complicated feature set with entirely new functionality, and continuously reduced risk and ambiguity across the platform. Strateos was able to achieve several new outcomes.
Better scientist experience and differentiation
Zemoso helped improve the way that scientists enter their lab notes, run experiments, and register new compounds in their experiments. They can now synthesize, and test a new drug without leaving the virtual lab. They can now run both biology and chemistry experiments, a key differentiating factor for Strateos.
Improved operator experience
Strateos operators had a lot of repetitive steps that were ideal candidates for process experience improvement. Zemoso teams studied the operator workflow, identified pain points and provided solutions. This improved the operator user experience.
Zemoso teams helped launch net new functionality into the offering and open up the market to drug manufacturers and chemical medical companies.
“The Zemoso team has been super helpful, they have taken a lot of load off the existing team, we were able to churn out a lot more features because of this partnership. Our product team has been able to focus a lot on new customer acquisition and product line diversification. Zemoso development team is an integral part of our team, an extended arm to rely upon. “ - Alok Gupta, SVP Engineering