As more labs aim to increase their output and obtain faster results, they need to handle more research samples and data in the process. One investment that can significantly help life science labs with this is automation software.
There is a variety of life science software options for a lab. LIMS (laboratory information management system) can manage all kinds of data, produce reports, track sample movement, and more. On the other hand, automation software for instruments can automate workflows of liquid handling systems, PCR robots, and other instruments in the lab.
Below are the most important aspects to consider when choosing a life science software.
Life Science Software: Ease of Use
The software must be user-friendly and easy to learn.
Before choosing software:
- Get a demonstration to explore the user interface
- Test its features and see whether they are configurable for your lab
- Consider how much time is needed in training staff on how to use it
- Opt for automation software such as Hudson’s SoftLinx software, which has an intuitive, graphical interface that is easy to understand.
Life Science Software: Current and Future Needs
The lab’s needs may change over the years, so it’s essential to consider current needs and future ones.
Talk to the vendor about the upgradability of the life science software and the costs involved, and the support available. Reconfiguration of the software may be needed to handle more samples and bigger instruments or create new workflows.
Life Science Software: Compatibility with Current Equipment
Whether considering scheduling software or mobile robot software, make sure that it’s compatible with existing equipment. If there is other software in the lab, such as LIMS from another vendor, make sure that they’re compatible as well. Consider life science software that can integrate with as many different instruments as possible from different manufacturers. By installing software that works with a PCR robot, a more general microplate manipulation or other instruments and devices, there won’t be a need to replace existing instruments.
Life Science Software: Security
Choosing software with proper security features will ensure that the lab’s data remains secure. Check the encryption standard used by the software and the permission levels available. If your lab is regulated, make sure that the software satisfies the 21 CFR Part 11 compliance and other regulatory requirements. For mobile robot and automation software, make sure it has multi-factor authentication.
Ownership Costs Including Maintenance
The cost of life science lab software ownership includes training modules, upgrades, maintenance costs, and technical support.
Obtain a detailed breakdown of the vendor’s cost and ask about additional charges if there may be a need to customize or scale up in the future. Before finalizing a choice, check the service contract in detail and pay attention to the renewal terms, conditions, cancellation terms, warranty, and other information.
Using the right life science software can transform how work is completed in a lab—beyond efficiency and results.
If you’re looking for software to automate your lab processes, contact Hudson Robotics with Hudson Robotics.