The selection of a lab informatics solution is among the most important decisions a lab can make, with significant implications for efficiency, productivity, and collaboration. In many ways, the lab informatics platform a laboratory selects will either enable or limit the type of lab it will become. 

Choosing the wrong solution often leaves scientists struggling with workflow rigidity, buggy upgrades, partial implementations, poor user experiences, inaccessible data, and worse… being forced to learn coding and SQL. As scientists navigate more complex molecules, more nuanced operational processes, intense reporting requirements, and larger datasets than ever before, the wrong platform choice simply becomes unscalable. 

The solution? Choosing a lab informatics platform that is truly science-aware™.  In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at 5 key markers of a science-aware™ solution, and how you can harness them to identify a lab informatics platform that will simplify life in the lab and accelerate scientific progress. 

What are the markers of a lab informatics platform that is science-aware™?

A science-aware™ LIMS system or Electronic Lab Notebook can be readily identified using five key markers: access, workflow, analytics, reusability, and experience. It is helpful to remember these with a simple acronym: AWARE. Let’s discuss each of these markers in more detail so that you can use them to spot the right platform for your lab. 

ACCESS: Access to all scientific data, all in one place.  

If scientific data is central to modern discovery, why is it strewn across disparate systems and buried under countless SQL queries? The first marker of a science-aware platform is ACCESS: access to all your scientific data from within your core platform—no SQL, no exports, no extra log ins and log outs. It is important to remember that access also includes science-aware searchability that enables you to search your data granularly and with a full understanding of their relationship to your experiments and workflows. We call this concept the living knowledge graph—a scalable, contextual representation of all your scientific data. If you haven’t learned about Sapio Jarvis, make sure to check it out.

WORKFLOW: Configurable workflow that adapts to novel science.  

With an increasingly complex set of workflows and the need to adapt them at the speed of science, workflow creation can no longer be the job of the computer programmer—it must be within reach for the scientist. That is why the second marker of a science-aware™ platform is WORKFLOW: configurable, no-code workflow capabilities that put the power in the scientist’s hands and enable the platform to work precisely the way scientists do. No workarounds and no custom code required. Instead, a science-aware LIMS should use intuitive techniques like starter templates, a drag-and-drop workflow builder, and an English language rules engine to eliminate friction in the workflow creation and configuration process. 

ANALYTICS: Rich analytics made for scientific information.   

Today’s discovery, development, and diagnostics workflows generate more data than ever before—but much of this data goes unanalyzed and therefore, unutilized. Most LIMS and Electronic Lab Notebook software solutions were simply not made for true data analysis. When labs do have a solution for analytics, it is often a disparate technology that may not have been designed for science at all. By contrast, a science-aware™ platform delivers rich visualization, analytics, and statistical modeling from within the platform. Best of all, these capabilities are rooted in a real scientific understanding, enabling the platform to deliver the metrics that mean the most to scientists. A science-aware™ platform will open the doors to AI, ML, and predictive modeling, empowering scientists to embrace their full potential. 

REUSABLE: Reusable objects to power productivity and scale.     

In today’s highly competitive discovery and diagnostics landscape, speed is everything. Why then, is so much of the scientific user’s time consumed re-creating workflows, experiments, and design entities that have been created in the system before? A science-aware™ platform will support reusable objects that can be created once, then used anywhere. Scientists should be able to easily save a variety of scientific design entities, including compounds, plasmids, reagents, and more—then seamlessly share them across teams to avoid knowledge gaps and eliminate duplicative effort. 

EXPERIENCE: Unified experience from data access to interpretation.  

Log out. Log in. Export. Log out. Login. Import. Do some actual scientific work. This is the daily ritual of most scientists. Notice that the science actually comes last in a long line of non-scientific tasks. If you’re using multiple systems with multiple logins and far too many clicks to manage your lab workflows, experiments, and data—you’re not alone. With a science-aware™ platform, it doesn’t have to be that way. Everything is unified in one experience, with one login and one source of truth—including LIMS, ELN, data management, and scientific data analysis. More still, this experience should come out-of-the-box with tools that scientists will actually use, like CRISPR editing, plasmid design, flow cytometry analytics, and more. 

Discover the power of science-aware™ lab informatics.

A science-aware™ platform delivers on all five of these markers to make life easier for scientists, accelerate productivity, and support your scientific needs today and tomorrow. By seeking out these five key markers in your next solution, you can set your scientists up for success and future-proof your lab informatics investment. 

Would you like to learn how to apply the science-aware™ markers to your solution search? Make sure to check out our free guide. If you’re ready to see what a science-aware™ platform can really do, request a free demo of the Sapio platform.