At a Glance.



Data Engineering, DevOps, Data Visualisation.


Pharmaceutical retail industry.


Azure Entra ID, Azure Synapse Analytics, Azure DevOps, Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2, Azure Key Vault, Microsoft Power BI, Microsoft Purview, Bicep for IaC.


Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) is an integrated healthcare, pharmacy and retail leader serving millions of customers and patients every day, with a 170-year heritage of caring for communities.


A trusted, global innovator in retail pharmacy with more than 12,500 locations across the U.S., Europe and Latin America, WBA plays a critical role in the healthcare ecosystem. The company is reimagining local healthcare and well-being for all as part of its purpose – to create more joyful lives through better health. Through dispensing medicines, improving access to a wide range of health services, providing high-quality health and beauty products and offering anytime, anywhere convenience across its digital platforms, WBA is shaping the future of healthcare.

The Challenge.

The RunOps team within Walgreens Boots Alliance Technology Center (WBA TC) faces several challenges in effectively managing the defects, incidents, problems and change management associated with Software Deployments within the WBA Pharmacy System, which manages all aspects of the Pharmacy in-store process (Prescriptions, Inventory etc.). Currently, accessing and analysing relevant data for incident management is a manual and time-consuming process. This inefficiency hampers the team's ability to monitor and improve key performance indicators (KPIs) and service level agreements (SLAs) associated with incidents.


Additionally, there is a lack of standardized tools and procedures for managing data, leading to difficulties in data access, sharing, and governance across the organization. As data becomes increasingly integral to WBA's business processes, there is a pressing need for establishing consistent access to comprehensive data sets, enabling automated reporting, and fostering a data-driven decision-making culture. Furthermore, the team requires scalable technology solutions to incorporate various data sources and ensure data quality and compliance with regulatory guidelines.


Addressing these challenges is crucial for RunOps to enhance operational efficiency, enable deeper data analysis, and drive impactful business insights within WBA.


Empowering Data-Driven Operations: The WBA Technology Center ('WBA TC' is designed to support innovation in healthcare technology and possess the agility to quickly respond to WBA’s operational needs through a 24/7 ‘follow the sun’ model'. WBA TC optimizes pharmacy software platform operations by centrally managing a line of digital pharmacy products. The RunOps team, which is a key part of WBA TC, oversees vendor management and software deployment governance for the Pharmacy System. Facing manual data gathering challenges, RunOps seeks automated insights for incident management, fostering a data-centric culture and ensuring compliance while enabling deep analysis for operational enhancement.

Spark Impact.

Based on the Spark engagement, the following key outputs were produced:

  • Capture of Data requirements to support the business goals and scalability of the WBA TC operation. This was critically important as WBA TC was at that time a newly established entity, with aggressive organisational goals as a centre of excellence for WBA globally.
  • Mapping and documentation of existing data flows within the organisation, identifying focus areas for process improvement.
  • An architecture, blueprint and implementation plan for a Data platform to meet the organisations business requirements.
  • A data platform business case for the leadership team within WBA TC, detailing the opportunities and benefits not just for the RunOps team, but also for the wider organisation in line with its growth plan.
The key business impact for WBA TC of this engagement was to establish a common understanding across the business of the power of implementing this core capability within the organisation, to address both short term and long term business objectives.