LIMS for Contract Laboratories
The term “Contract Laboratories” covers a wide range of organizations of various sizes that serve a variety of different industries and sectors. This means that the requirements of contract laboratories are extremely varied in the context of data management systems. Furthermore, some of the larger global organizations deal with different market sectors thus requiring a high degree of flexibility in business management systems.
Many of the industries served by contract laboratories are highly regulated and therefore the need for traceability, audit trails, sample tracking and flexible reporting is essential in a business management system. In the case of most contract laboratories the business is selling an analytical laboratory service and therefore a combination of a LIMS and a business management system is the ideal solution.
Despite the very wide variety of materials and associated testing that are serviced by commercial testing laboratories there are many common requirements. These common requirements form the basis of a specific requirement for each organization.
Matrix Gemini is not only a LIMS - it will function as a business management system as well. It will allow the creation of quotations, order booking, allocation of appropriate prices and the production of invoices either directly or in conjunction with a corporate accounts system. The pricing part of the system is completely configurable allowing discount structures based on customer, number of samples submitted, turnaround times requested and more. This allows contract laboratories to monitor profitability right down to the test level.
The Matrix Gemini Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) from Autoscribe is a versatile system that can meet the varied requirements of contract laboratories both large and small. Matrix Gemini can be designed to suit the varying workload. Workflows, screen designs and terminology, for example, can be optimized for each type of job/sample that is encountered e.g. food, water, consumer goods, chemicals, oils. This is achieved without any custom coding hence the same software can be used in different departments or different divisions of the same company.
This approach allows standardization on one LIMS with resulting initial cost savings plus a lower cost of ownership.
Interestingly some of the larger contract laboratories decided to write their own systems, prior to the availability of Matrix Gemini, with all the associated drawbacks e.g. continued development costs not shared with other organisations, support workload, implementation time which is typically much longer than for a commercial system and a lack of new features on a regular basis.
Other large contract laboratories have historically used different LIMS for different divisions of the company due to the lack of flexibility within commercial systems. Matrix Gemini has changed all of that – it has the flexibility to be suitable for a huge range of applications with all the benefits of a highly configurable commercial system.
Contract Laboratories are one of the larger market segments that have adopted Matrix Gemini LIMS – why is this so?
Flexibility – Matrix Gemini can manage a very wide range of materials and tests. This flexibility is perfect for contract laboratories that may have different divisions for various industries. The test formats and any associated limits or specifications can be user maintained without needing to contact Autoscribe. Matrix Gemini also features a Bulk Sample Registration capability to save time when registering large numbers of samples of similar or dissimilar types. There is also the concept of a uniquely numbered job or project within Matrix Gemini with individual samples being allocated to the job/project.
Dual desktop/web system - therefore customers of contract laboratories can be given controlled access for the purpose of registering samples, checking on the work status and obtaining reports, for example. This functionality will reduce the number of phone calls and e-mails sent to the contract laboratory. The web access provides the flexibility from the smallest contract labs with single user, single PC systems to large multinationals with multiple concurrent users connected via multiple sites. Please note that this access facility could be controlled/ limited in any way that the contract laboratory decides e.g. regular and large customers only.
Whether you are a small company or a global company Matrix Gemini can bring real benefits to your operation.
Successful Autoscribe LIMS implementations exist in contract laboratories serving the following market sectors:
Environmental (air, water, soils and plants)
Equipment Calibration and Service
Materials Testing (soils, concrete, clay, etc.)
Fuels and Lubricants
De-commissioning of Nuclear Sites
View some of our case studies:-