Pharma manufacturing is a highly complex process with manufacturers striving to gain operational excellence with Pharma 4.0 ready, production planning optimization tools. Using advanced digital tools enables the management of ever-increasing growth in variability and complexity, which contributes to rising fulfillment costs and poor use of human and equipment resources. To further explore this complexity and the value of optimization tools, this whitepaper compares gold standard methods used in the pharma industry with the advanced simulation and optimization-based tool “Smart Scheduling” in meeting clinical and R&D production targets. Results show that through adaptive scheduling, Smart Scheduling can optimize the use of major assets and other resources to satisfy production demands, resulting in significant KPI improvements—an average of 30%, and more than 50% in some cases. This improvement creates higher revenue in the current environment and supports much shorter development times for the future.