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HOW DO YOU Accelerate Digital Transformation?

Our personal lives have been completely digitalized over the last decade. Whether we’re checking the weather forecast, reading the news, doing our banking or making plans with friends, we use the apps on our mobile phones and tablets without a second thought. And it makes us all more productive.

The laboratory is a very different story. The software applications used in today’s labs don’t come close to the convenience and comprehensiveness of personal apps. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many lab managers have pushed full digital transformation—of which remote access to data is a vital part—to the top of their priority lists. Yet a full 85% of labs still manage their chemical inventories manually, using Excel spreadsheets or even paper. 

This has profound consequences. Two major ones are a lack of real-time access to materials data from anywhere, which makes planning the next day’s experiments difficult; and the significant costs of unused chemicals expiring, disposing of these items and replacing them. There are various digital inventory management solutions on the market, but if implementing them into your current workstreams or getting your end users to adopt them is a challenge, you might as well have stuck with paper records.

One solution that circumvents these problems is the LANEXO® Laboratory Inventory, Safety and Compliance Management System. Winner of the German Design Award Gold 2021, the LANEXO® System consists of an Android app for digital data capture at point of use, RFID labels for tracking consumables and their storage locations, a Web app for administrative settings, and secure user access cards. It provides a simple, elegant means of tracking your entire chemical inventory.

Directing experimental workflows from the comfort of your home

The pandemic has led to many lab managers working from home, which can make it challenging for them to prepare the experiments that their scientist colleagues will carry out. Without real-time access to accurate lab materials data, it’s hard to direct researchers to the bottles of chemicals that will expire soonest, ensuring they don’t go to waste. It may also be hard for them to find the reagents they need at all: scientists spend an average of 50 minutes hunting down consumables for an experiment.

With the LANEXO® System, you just log into the Web App and complete the fields under Prepare Experiment. You can assign a specific user to the experiment, set a due date and specify consumable(s) and sample(s). Because the system records the opening and expiration dates of each item, you can instruct the scientist to use up bottles of chemicals that will expire before others. The system creates traceable records of these articles, automatically collects their data and links them to reports.

No-fuss integration, no-tears user adoption

The simple design and intuitive user interface of the LANEXO® System make it extremely easy to implement into your existing laboratory workflows and easy for your end users to learn. Just place a Smart RFID label on any material you want to manage: Sigma-Aldrich consumables, articles by other vendors or even your own in-house samples. Then scan the label with the LANEXO® Mobile App. Our presentation on how to use the system takes 1 hour, and most users start using it by themselves right away.

Waste not 

Science is inherently a resource-heavy endeavor that consumes massive amounts of energy and generates copious hazardous waste. However, the Green Labs movement has been demonstrating a variety of ways in which the impact of laboratory work on the environment can be reduced. Some of these fixes are small and easy, like adjusting freezer temperatures from –80 °C to –70 °C or closing your fume hood when you aren’t using it.

There’s also the need for more-systemic solutions. This is where digital tools like the LANEXO® System come into play. When a scientist opens a bottle of a consumable, the system updates its status and calculates its expiry date. In addition, the LANEXO® System tracks where all your consumables are stored in your lab, making them easier for researchers to find and lowering the likelihood that they’ll be reordered unnecessarily. As a result, fewer of your materials go to waste, you can maintain a smaller storage footprint, and you’re at lower risk of experimental downtime from stock outages.

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