Disjointed no more: Agilent helps a leading research institution manage resources

Agilent Technologies Australia Pty Ltd
Tuesday, 15 December, 2020

With more than 100 core facilities in operation — from its renowned school of medicine to its comprehensive cancer centre — one of our top customers was facing an increasingly common obstacle: disjointed operations.

It is hardly surprising when you realise that this institution maintains an integrated ecosystem of core facilities designed to enable cutting-edge research in genetics, medicine and other key scientific disciplines.

Two main problems

Shared resource facilities located in different departments often offer similar core services but operate independently. This common set-up presents two main problems:

  1. Researchers from the similar cores may be unaware of service offerings at the other facilities. A vital piece of equipment could be just down the hallway, but researchers have no way of knowing it.
  2. With numerous individually operating facilities, large institutions often lack a system of central oversight. Between rules, regulations and management, they desperately need a way to easily view the financial and operational performance of all core facilities in one place.

We were able to resolve the situation with iLab Operations Software by Agilent CrossLab.

Software as a service

Offered as a service, iLab is accessible through a web browser, eliminating the need for hardware, downloads or maintenance by the user. In short, it is a one-stop shop for lab management. After putting the software to work, the Director of Core Facilities in this case shared her thoughts with us:

“iLab has done an excellent job to unify our core facilities,” she said. “With over 100 cores, the ability to link resources, provide greater transparency of core operations and drive efficiencies with a single management platform has been extremely helpful. The iLab system allows administrators to easily view the health and performance of an individual core facility, or the institution’s entirety of shared resources. This platform has also benefited our faculty researchers, who now have far greater visibility of essential services offered by cores.”

Built to simplify shared resource operations, iLab acts as a single portal for researchers, staff, and administration alike. Personnel simply log in to the iLab system with their existing university credentials and gain access to integrated capabilities. Once logged in, they can search for and view all available resources the university has to offer. This increases instrument visibility, whether that equipment is inches away or at a different campus. From there, scheduling time on equipment is just seconds away, thanks to a click-and-drag calendar interface.

Everyone benefits

  • This unified system benefits lab managers and administrators as well as researchers.
  • It provides a consolidated view of all requests and associated details in one place — putting the requester’s information (level of training, payment method, and so on) within easy reach.
  • The iLab system also takes care of all billing and reporting, providing managers with instant summaries and reports.
  • With multiple user levels available, iLab benefits not only lab staff and resource users, but research administrators as well. For those in positions such as Dean or VP of research, a consolidated but comprehensive view of all shared resource operations is critical. With iLab, these administrators have their choice of data across all labs, at the individual instrument or service level, or any grouping of resources.

To know more, please visit https://www.agilent.com/en/ilab-core.

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