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Frequently Asked Questions



Off the Shelf Packaged LIMS (e.g. LabSoft LIMS) vs In-House Home Grown LIMS
Issues Packaged LIMS In-House Home Grown LIMS
TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) Company shares costs with other companies. As technologies advance in the computing industry, the packaged LIMS will naturally migrate. Company must bear total cost of all support, maintenance and future developments including new functionality and industry migration and evolution.
Support Availability Supported by many people 24/7. High risk since the people who create and support the application may move to other positions or leave the company. They are also not commonly available 24x7.
IT Staff Support is shared with LIMS vendor. IT staff must bear all support.
Future use ideas Company can look outside its own corporate “box” and learn from their peers. Company must develop all ideas internally.
Profession Packaged LIMS are written and supported by professional LIMS developers. LIMS is their business. Apps are generally written by people who are not “professional” LIMS developers. These developers have many other applications and duties.
Flexibility Packaged LIMS are by nature flexible and can commonly be configured to meet changing requirements. Home grown systems are generally not flexible since they were created for a specific purpose to fit the immediate need. If the company wants additional functionality they have to pay for it.
Term Long term solution Short term solution


Access versus SQL Server
Issues SQL Server Access
Target SQL Server is targeted for enterprise solutions to yield much greater robustness. Access is targeted for personnel or workgroup solutions.
Integrity SQL Server rarely has data integrity issues. Access commonly has data integrity issues.
Multi-user SQL Server can scale to thousands of simultaneous users. Access was not designed to be used by many users simultaneously.


Summary

  • With a “home grown” system you are “going it alone” instead of partnering with a vendor and “peers” to share costs, ideas and risk.
  • Packaged LIMS allow companies to design, build, test, and deploy the LIMS faster, at lower cost, and with better functionality than the development team could afford to create on its own.
  • The value proposition offered by packaged LIMS is clear. Why reinvent all of the functionality that has already been created by LIMS manufacturers? The LIMS engineers put in thousands of hours into writing, testing, documenting, and supporting the LIMS system.


On the Access versus SQL Server issue:

  • For the money and time spent in the Quality department, the data produced needs to be available outside the lab for Business decision purposes; therefore, it requires an enterprise solution like SQL Server.
  • With the sensitive nature of Quality data and since it’s the company’s interface to the customer, a database solution that is robust with proven data integrity is required, such as SQL Server.











 



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