How to get the best results with a LIMS reporting system
The LIMS reporting system is one of the most important parts of this software, and one of the key drivers of demand for its implementation.
In recent years, LIMS's have been highly acclaimed by many research institutions around the world.
According to Grand View Search, North America is leading the world in LIMS implementations. This software has also become widespread in laboratories across Europe and Asia.
You can learn about the Top 5 benefits of LIMS from our previous article.
Today we’ll talk about the advantages that the LIMS reporting system can provide for your company. We will also consider the main types of LIMS reports that you should pay attention to when implementing this program.
Why should you integrate a LIMS reporting system?
- Various and diverse data underlie the activities of any laboratory and many other research institutions. The growing popularity of LIMS is largely due to its ability to generate a large number of required reports.
- Reports accompany all ongoing processes and help laboratory staff and owners record, monitor, and track all their important information.
- A big plus for users is that the system allows you to generate visual reports in graphs, charts, and tables. If necessary, they can be converted into any desired format, printed, or sent out for internal or external distribution.
- LIMS reporting systems aid the migration to electronic document management. It includes paperless reporting, report status tracking, and access to the latest report version.
Main types of LIMS reports
As a rule, the reporting system for LIMS is developed based on the work modules. For the convenience of users, it can be modified, supplemented, and expanded to meet evolving demands.
Let's focus on the main types of reports that can be included in LIMS.
- Sample management reports
Samples are the working material that the laboratory begins with. Reports related to samples allow you to control their registration, assignment of test items, distribution by structural units, sample tracking, sample summary, sample exceptions, etc.
This type of report allows you to exclude the loss of samples. It also helps to maintain their records and plan further tasks.
- Lab operational reports
During laboratory research, many different processes associated with the work and study of samples occur.
Reports of this type reflect the activities of structural departments, individual specialists, the status of the test tasks (in progress, paused, submitted for revision, resumed, etc.), intermediate and final results of the research/work.
In addition to information about the state of laboratory research, such reports provide insight of the productivity of employees and their effectiveness.
- Resource management reports
Among the most frequent reports of this type are the accounting of the reagents and other consumables used, equipment management (e.g. tubes calibration), and even human resources.
These reports are necessary to facilitate the efficient operation of the laboratory, meeting deadlines, and the work plan.
- Business management reports
The relationship between the laboratory and the customer/client/patient requires constant accounting and monitoring. This group of reports gives a clear picture of the number of samples provided by one or multiple clients, the time spent on research, and the number of steps taken for each project or each sample.
Thanks to the analysis of this group of reports, the laboratory can organize its work processes to such a degree that it bolsters their reputation.
- Finance reports
These reports may include data on the organization’s income and the necessary regular payments. As well as invoices for the purchase of reagents, equipment maintenance and repair, employee salaries, and more.
A clear understanding of what and when the funds were spent from your company’s budget makes it easier to properly plan further work.
Of course, this is not a complete list of preconfigured LIMS reports. In addition to the above types, they may also include patient-oriented reports, project management reports, audit trail reports, quality control reports, and many others.
In our experience with developing LIMS software, we know how crucial it is to cooperate with and gain a thorough understanding of our client’s individual needs in regard to the nature of their work. This helps us create ideal reporting systems properly tailored to their business. In the LIMS project for Down Content Analysis Laboratory that we are working on now, we are focused on real-time data analysis and centralization of performance monitoring from receiving the sample to test results submission.
Analytics and statistics are the engines of laboratory research. That is why a flexible reporting system, which allows you to get the necessary information at any time, is an important and distinctive quality of LIMS.
Generating all kinds of summary reports in different categories: time, processes, performers, materials and equipment involved, labor resources, financial costs, and more has become invaluable to laboratories worldwide.
All this makes it possible to structure and effectively organize the work of your laboratory.