DHL analytical - Case Study

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Courtesy of Poplar Solutions, LLC

Quantum Leap in productivity
According to John Dupont, General Manager of Operations, “DHL Analytical, Inc. has been on the leading edge of laboratory innovation for many years. Our vision was to move towards a paperless laboratory, with the realization that the current generation of electronic documents can be produced at almost all points in our process.

The trick for us was finding a document management system that is efficient at accessing and collating those documents for our reports. Our system of managing hard copy documents was reliable and logical, but too costly in terms of space, cost of supplies, manpower, and in terms of environmental impact. Labcore first caught our eye because it could create electronic filing structure that mimic our hard copy filing system, thus making it intuitive for our staff to learn.

We view the Labcore Document Management System as being similar to the quantum leap in productivity that DHL Analytical took decades ago, when our laboratory went from spreadsheet forms for our data management to our Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS). We are looking forward to using Labcore for all our data storage and for our reporting needs, from our simplest data package to a complicated Level IV report.”

The 5 Keys to Success

  • Tight integration with LIMS.
  • Print to PDF for all instruments.
  • DHL Analytical specific workflows that mimics paper based document interaction.
  • Very intuitive user interface that allows for rapid adoption and deployment. The individual dashboard view allows managers and analysts to quickly see their work and move it through the laboratory’s specific business processes.
  • Rapid data package assembly into one paginated, bookmarked PDF of virtually any type required by laboratory.

Challenges and Solutions
DHL Analytical, Inc., a full service environmental testing laboratory in Round Rock Texas, accredited in Texas by TCEQ (NELAP), Louisiana LaDEQ (LELAP), Oklahoma ODEQ & DoD-ELAP, implemented Labcore in 2012 to automate its report generating module which creates reports compliant to client and DoD specifications, and CLP-like data package assembly and management.

Complex Level 3 and 4 data packages done manually with paper and are very labor intensive and costly to produce

Solution
Centralized Web based solution enables laboratory to automate the entire process from assembling and review specific instrument runs to assembling any Level 1 through Level 4 data package on the fly in a matter of seconds.

Result
Reduced hours needed to assemble complex Level 3 and 4 data packages by approximately 70% allowing reallocation and reduction of labor costs.

Documents and data are stored in disconnected repositories resulting in data islands making search and retrieval and correlation very difficult and time consuming.

Solution
Integration with LIMS and laboratory instruments. Most files are full text searchable in Labcore making it easy to retrieve information

Result
Search and retrieval reduced from 10 minutes per incident to 2 minutes per incident, an 80% gain in productivity.
Very high costs associated with maintaining paper based system (paper, copying, storing/archiving). Studies have shown costs are approx $.07 to $.10 per page

Solution
Electronically capture documents/data as PDFs with lab specific workflows. PDF editing tools allow commenting. Data packages also assembled electronically.

Result
94% cost reduction in 2013 and 2014 from decreased paper, toner, and copier maintenance costs.

Paper-based processes very cumbersome for tracking the status of the documents needed for a completed data packages making errors more likely.

Solution
Dashboard visually prioritizes work for analysts and manager mimicking paper process. The software also allows managers to quickly see what files are present and what is missing eliminating errors and allowing quicker turnaround.

Result
All laboratory users report the system being intuitive and easy to use after short amount of training. Errors or omissions, if any, are caught just as quickly as the hardcopy procedure and data package turnaround time has improved by 15% for Level 1 packages and by at least 70% for Level 4.

Document controls such as versioning and audit trails missing or inadequate.

Solution
All documents are tracked with full document controls (versioning and audit trail).

Result
DHL Analytical’s method for storing and handling documents is now fully defensible and developed using the compliance highest standards.

Customers expect high quality electronic deliverable with lower cost and quicker turn- around times. PDF format now becoming standard.

Solution
Data packages of all types (Level 1-Level 4) are assembled into PDF format. Created in minutes with pagination, table of contents and bookmarks making it very user friendly and professional.

Result
DHL Analytical data packages are now competitive with anyone; high quality, delivered quickly and at a highly competitive price.

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