What is a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS)?

A Laboratory Information Management System, more commonly referred to as a LIMS, is a software system designed to help manage the workflow and daily operations in a laboratory. Although each LIMS provider designs their software a bit differently, at its core, the system focuses on data management in regards to specimen testing and results reporting. With a LIMS, a laboratory can decrease the time it takes for a sample to come through the door, be tested, resulted and sent back to the submitter. Streamlining specimen processing allows the lab to become more efficient which should lead to increased volume capability and improved profitability. Another advantage of using a LIMS and introducing laboratory automation is to reduce human error in result and data entry. A LIMS does not just stop at managing testing, it can also integrate with a laboratory’s instruments, track specimens, allow for web reporting & web data entry, act as a CRM solution, streamline electronic data exchange (HL7), handle barcodes and offer quality assurance. The software can be implemented in almost any kind of laboratory environment. Public health, toxicology, pharmacogenetics, pain management, forensic, bioterrorism and clinical chemistry labs have all seen success when adopting a LIMS. Most LIMS providers offer a purchased software option as well as a SaaS platform to host the software for a monthly fee. By improving quality performance with a LIMS software, a laboratory is given the chance to grow and exceed their customer’s expectations.