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Ad Hoc Queries

In almost every laboratory, a group of standard queries are developed within the LIMS.  This prearranged group of queries covers 80-90% of the queries most laboratories and analysts will ever need.  It is that “other” 10-20% of unique queries that can and will be the sticking point.  It is often the lack of quick, customizable queries that can trip up productivity or limit quality control checks.

Khemia’s Omega 11 overcomes this common stumbling point by offering an ad hoc query writer.  Ad hoc queries may be created to pull any needed data within the LIMS.  This tool may be used by both a LIMS administrator familiar with SQL and/or by an analyst using a query writing tool available within Access.

A short demonstration video may be seen at https://youtu.be/XTAqnEFZlT8.

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Sample Receipt Checklist

When logging in samples, laboratories must verify the conditions under which the samples were received. The most efficient way to do this is a checklist within the LIMS. This not only helps automate the process, it also records the checklist automatically, adding to the necessary paper trail for audits.

Several common components for these checklists are:
Chain of Custody information (signed, properly filled out and dated, etc.),
Sample condition information (i.e. temperature of samples, broken containers, preservatives used, etc.),
Cooler information and
Comments/notes.

These checklists may be modified as needed by a laboratory. A set list of questions may be seen in the attached video: https://youtu.be/tZ8O-DApv3w

Written by Robert Benz (rbenz@khemia.com), Sales & Marketing Director for Khemia Software (www.khemia.com).

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LIMS Reporting

No business can run successfully without completing its final step. No LIMS can be considered a good LIMS unless it can generate the final report. Not any report, but specifically, the report the client has requested.

A final report is your laboratory’s final product. The results posted in it are the reason your laboratory exists. The supporting data in the report verifying that the data is reliable and reproducible data is not only legally important, but for those working within the laboratory, a matter of pride.

Khemia’s Omega 11 LIMS has a complete and easily configurable report developer that is straightforward and easy to navigate. With a few simple steps, what main sections are to be included in a report, what order they are to be presented in and what analytical data, field data and/or QC data are to be presented may be modified as needed, allowing a laboratory to quickly configure their reports to fit their clients’ specific needs. As well, whether or not an electronic data deliverable (EDD) is to be included in the final report package may be selected within this screen.

The short video clip below gives a brief overview of the report designer:
Reporting Demo

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AOCS-IAWEA-AWWA 2016 Iowa Analytical Chemistry-Industrial Pretreatment Meeting

Khemia Software will be displaying the Omega 11 LIMS at the AOCS-IAWEA-AWWA 2016 Iowa Analytical Chemistry-Industrial Pretreatment Meeting May 19th in Ankeny, IA on the DMACC Ankeny Campus.

Thursday May 19, 2016 from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM CDT
FFA Enrichment Center, DMACC Ankeny Campus
1055 SW Prairie Trail Parkway
Ankeney, IA 50023

For additional information, please contact Robert Benz (rbenz@khemia.com) or Edward Askew
AOCS Analytical Committee – Iowa Section AWWA and IAWEA Laboratory , Pretreatment and Research Committee
563-554-9450 (efaskew@hotmail.com).

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The Legacy LIMS Folly

Many laboratories face this same issue. A dated, legacy LIMS exist. It lacks needed capabilities. It cannot be remotely accessed. No client portal exists. It does not integrate with all of the newer instruments. It cannot produce new, needed reports. It cannot effectively update QC reports. Its query functions are extremely limited. It is failing under the higher workload. It cannot operate on the “new” computers. Yet, it, that old LIMS, is vital to the day to day operation of the laboratory. “If we could just get by this one more year… We’ll replace it next year!” And that has been said for five years straight.

Time and time again, as a LIMS vendor, we see laboratories pull the plug and decide to FINALLY purchase a new LIMS for one or more of the following reasons:
-Technical support is no longer offered; either base on old versioning or a LIMS that no longer exist
-The legacy LIMS will not operate on any version of Windows after XP (or earlier)
PS –I’ve seen DOS systems in place still recently
-Reporting needs cannot be met (final reports, QC reports, etc.)
-The legacy LIMS cannot handle instrument downloads
-The increased workload at the laboratory cannot be handled by the old LIMS.

As anyone who has worked in a laboratory knows, a new LIMS is a big deal. As a salesperson for a LIMS company, I often tell a new client “You will like me and the LIMS I sell when you sign the PO. You will like me and the LIMS again in two to six months when it is fully implemented”. Implementing a LIMS, while maintaining normal laboratory operations, is just not easy. BUT, it is worth every second and every penny spent. By its inherent nature, a LIMS is the central nervous system of the laboratory. Every aspect of a laboratory can and will operate better with a new LIMS properly configured. The new, little features of the new LIMS that you paid little attention to at the demo are suddenly those things that you cannot imagine living without!

After a complete implementation, we hear that same words said time and time again. “Hindsight is 20:20”. For most laboratories trying to hold onto a legacy LIMS, one or all of the following efforts were made:
-A high cost to programmers were paid to patch things
-A great deal of time was consumed trying to make the square peg fit in the round hole
-Third party applications were purchased to tease things together.

What did all this lead to? As eloquently stated in one of the LIMS session I ran at a national conference “INCALCULABLE HEARTBURN, FRUSTRATION, HOPELESSNESS, DESPAIR, ANGER, EVIL THOUGHTS”.

It is an understandable folly to keep an old LIMS alive. Simply by having worked in a laboratory, one can understand that temptation. Most of us who have worked in a laboratory have lived through it at some point. But, it is a folly.

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