Writing a LIMS / ELN RFP? Chapter 6: Top Lab customization and configuration requirements | Sapio Sciences Blog


In an earlier article, we reviewed the top workflow automation requirements for LIMS / ELN laboratory systems RFPs.

This article looks at LIMS and ELN RFP requirements for system configuration and customization. Configuring and customizing these systems to meet the specific needs of a laboratory is essential for ensuring that laboratory staff can work efficiently and effectively. Customization enables laboratories to tailor their LIMS and ELN workflows, experiment configurations, and user interfaces to their specific requirements, making the system more intuitive, user-friendly, and efficient.

Furthermore, configuration management enables laboratories to set up access controls and security features, creating an environment that complies with regulatory standards and best practices. A well-configured and customized LIMS and ELN can ultimately streamline laboratory operations, reduce human error, and improve overall laboratory efficiency, leading to better scientific outcomes. Vendor RFP requirements to consider as follows:

Data migration

This customization feature enables the migration of existing data from the current system to the new laboratory information system. It’s essential to ensure that data consistency is maintained and there is no data loss or corruption during the transfer process.

Workflow migration

This customization feature allows migrating laboratory workflows to the new system. It’s crucial to ensure that laboratory operations are not disrupted during the transition and that staff members can continue working efficiently.

Workflow and experiment configuration

This feature allows for configuring laboratory workflows and experiments to meet specific requirements. It should provide the flexibility to customize and configure workflows and experiments to fit the laboratory’s unique needs.

Job roles and access permissions

This customization feature allows the laboratory administrator to define specific job roles and assign access permissions to users based on their roles. It is essential to ensure laboratory staff members can access the appropriate data and functionality to perform their tasks effectively.

Single sign-on

This feature enables users to log in to the laboratory information system with one set of credentials. It should provide a seamless login experience and improve security by eliminating the need for multiple usernames and passwords.

Custom workflow

This feature allows for creating custom workflows to meet specific laboratory needs. It should provide a flexible interface to design, configure, and manage custom workflows.

Multiple location and timezone support

This customization feature allows the laboratory information system to support multiple locations and time zones. It should provide the capability to configure each location independently and seamlessly handle data transfer between locations.

User interface customization

This customization feature allows for the customization of the user interface to meet specific laboratory requirements. It should provide the flexibility to add, remove or rearrange menus and elements on the interface. It should allow information banners to be displayed on key pages that show critically important information – this allows technicians and scientists to always have context about the sample, project, experiment, or workflow without clicking away to another screen.

Report customization

This feature allows for the customization of laboratory reports to meet specific requirements. It should provide a flexible interface to design and configure reports, including adding custom data fields and filters.

In conclusion, RFP requirements for configuring and customizing a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) or Electronic Laboratory Notebook (ELN) are vital in tailoring the system to your needs, such as workflows, experiment configurations, and user interfaces to meet specific user requirements. Customization can also ensure compliance with regulatory standards, streamline operations, reduce errors, and improve efficiency, leading to better scientific outcomes. When requesting proposals from LIMS vendors, laboratories should consider including key customization features such as data migration, workflow migration, experiment configuration, job roles and access permissions, single sign-on, custom workflows, multiple location and timezone support, user interface customization, report customization. Doing so will enable vendors to understand the laboratory’s needs better and deliver a system that meets those needs.