Press Release | Intralinks

Intralinks 2012 Global Investigator Site Survey: Second Year Results Solidify Need for Adoption of Web-based Clinical Trial Document Exchange Tools

Date: 07/18/2012

64 percent of respondents still use email as the primary method for clinical document exchange

Intralinks® (NYSE: IL), a leading, global technology provider of inter-enterprise content management and collaboration solutions, today announced the results of the 2012 Intralinks Global Investigator Site Survey. 

The survey looked at what methods are currently used for clinical trial document exchange, and the effectiveness of those methods. The survey results revealed an increased prevalence in the use of online tools from 65 percent in 2011 to 74 percent in 2012, but that there is a significant opportunity for investigator sites to improve efficiency through web-based solutions for clinical trial exchange.

The survey findings show that the majority of investigator sites are using traditional methods – email, courier and fax – as a primary tool for clinical trial document exchange. Adoption of electronic tools has grown, yet these methods continue to fall short in addressing the current document exchange needs at most clinical trial sites:

  • 77% of respondents (a 4% increase over the 2011 survey) use traditional methods – email (64%), courier (8%), and fax (5%) – as their primary tool for clinical trial document exchange
  • 20% of respondents use web-based document exchange tools including Electronic Data Capture technologies (85%) and clinical portals (83%) as their main way of exchanging clinical trial documents
  • 3% of respondents didn’t select a primary method

The survey results indicate that investigator sites are experiencing significant inefficiencies and productivity challenges as a result of the ongoing use of email, courier, and fax:

  • 58% of respondents track due dates for information, current status, or milestones manually
  • 66% of respondents spend at least two hours, and in some cases more than nine hours, per week searching for documents
  • 78% of respondents (up 4% from 2011) report resending documents to sponsors and Contract Research Organizations (CROs) at least once or twice, and in some cases more than five times, a week

The survey found that respondents recognize the benefits of web-based clinical document exchange tools:

  • 71% of respondents cited being able to access updated information right away and reducing the amount of paper they use as advantages 
  • 60% of respondents cited being able to keep track of information easily as a benefit 
  • 49% of respondents cited not spending as much time searching for information as a benefit

The survey results also showed that most respondents are conducting numerous studies and those that use online clinical tools such as electronic data capture and clinical portals have a significant number of passwords and logins:

  • 89% of respondents have conducted three to 15+ studies over the last 12 months 
  • 53% of respondents are running four to 15+ concurrent studies
  • 83% of respondents use online clinical trial portals, up from 71 percent in 2011

“There needs to be a paradigm shift to evaluate clinical document exchange challenges from a clinical community perspective,” said George Waidell, VP, life sciences practice at Intralinks. “It is pivotal for sponsors and CROs to consider investigator sites’ needs and the clinical community perspective. Deploying web-based clinical document exchange tools will enable them to reach optimal productivity gains and efficiencies.”

The Intralinks Global Investigator Site Survey was conducted online by CenterWatch, a trusted source of clinical trials information for both professionals and patients. There were 600 responses to the survey with 71% of respondents based in North America, 19% in Europe, and 5% in Asia Pacific. For more information on the survey, contact your Intralinks representative.

Intralinks is exhibiting at DIA’s 48th Annual Meeting in Philadelphia from June 24 – 28. Intralinks will be at booth number 3131.