Introduction to LIMS

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Introduction to a Laboratory Information Management System

For the small to medium sized laboratory, daily work has traditionally been a manually intensive process. Manually intensive in regards to the actual application of protocols to samples by staff sitting at laboratory benches, but also in regards to laboratory managers who coordinate those tasks and oversee projects as a whole. Many managers have become skilled users of spreadsheets through the necessity of tracking samples and projects. However, as laboratory techniques improve and timeframes shorten, especially due to the use of robotics and other instrumentation, these traditional management techniques are becoming error prone and time consuming.

The need for effective sample and project management leads many laboratories to look for a software solution to their dilemmas. One route that laboratories can take is to develop their own unique software . However, this path is often fraught with the dangers of uncertain delivery times and budgetary blowouts - problems endemic in the world of software development. Another route, and one that many laboratories choose, is to purchase a commercially available Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS).

Many LIMS are targeted towards large commercial laboratories, their installations often require several months to complete, a team of IT staff to support them, and are often very expensive. This situation limits the appeal of LIMS to large laboratories with big budgets. However, utilizing modern development techniques and technology eBioSys has been able to create a LIMS system that provides the power and flexibility of expensive commercially available LIMS at a price affordable by all laboratories. At last, small laboratories have access to a powerful, fully compliant software solution that will allow them to manage samples, users, tasks, protocols, workflows and integrate with robotics and other equipment.