by Ashley Carter

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In the most basic description, a LIMS (Laboratory Information Management System) is a software program that is used to track work in the laboratory and capture results of testing. The features provided by a LIMS are dependent upon the provider; however, there are a few features that are common among typical LIMS solutions. We highlight a few of these here.

Order/Sample/Test Management

Screenshot of Wavefront LIMS showing hierarchy of Order, Samples, and Tests.
One of the most important features of a LIMS is the ability to track work throughout the laboratory and maintain that traceability in the future. Each provider handles this slightly differently, but typically there is a hierarchy to identify an Order, the Samples on that Order, and the tests assigned to those Samples. Wavefront Software provides multiple paths for creating and tracking these objects, including:
  • Automatic creation through interface with ERP systems
  • Creation through execution of pre-defined templates
  • Automatic creation based on Specification requirements
  • Manual creation

Entering Test Results

Screenshot of Wavefront LIMS data entry screen.

Another important feature of any LIMS is automatically populating test data from an instrument directly into the system. Data entry is commonly done manually, but if the system has the capability, instrument interfacing is a valuable tool to reduce typos and minimize manual data entry tasks.

Completing Testing

Once testing is complete, the data on a sample/order is compiled into a report or exported file for use outside of the system. The capabilities/features of the system will determine what can be done with the data. Wavefront software can create reports or export files that are extremely flexible to meet the laboratory’s and their customer’s requirements.

Other LIMS Features

Every laboratory has different requirements for their processes and workflows, and each system provider addresses those requirements differently. Some common functions achieved in a LIMS are:

  • Specification management & application to tests
  • Instrument and Calibration tracking
  • Laboratory Status Boards and Dashboards for tracking workflow and metrics
  • SPC Calculations and Control Charts
  • Barcoding
  • Test scheduling

Reach out to Wavefront Software via the “Schedule a Demo” link above to learn more about the above features and many more that can help your laboratory achieve its goals.

About the Author: Ashley Carter

Ashley Carter is the technical sales engineer at Wavefront Software. She has been with Wavefront for several years in both the sales and project management capacity. Prior to joining Wavefront Software, she implemented Wavefront LIMS at the advanced materials laboratory where she worked as a technical quality engineer. In addition to her PMP certification, Ashley has two master's degrees in Metallurgical and Mineral Process Engineering and Engineering Management.

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