Visualizing LIMS: How to develop an RFP to get the system you want

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A Request for Proposal (RFP) is a comprehensive way to supply information on how a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) will meet the requirements of your laboratory. A LIMS RFP is an essential tool for helping visualize a LIMS implementation project, and it also provides a solid roadmap for the laboratory-vendor relationship. A properly developed RFP describes in detail the desired LIMS features and functionality and is the best way to express to potential LIMS vendors what your LIMS specifications are. A well designed LIMS RFP will also address all the laboratory’s needs and require that responding LIMS vendors conform to the laboratory’s methodology for dealing with them.

In addition, utilizing the RFP process provides the laboratory an opportunity to examine their entire operation taking in consideration the laboratory and data management requirements and business rules. Knowledgeable people inside the laboratory, including the various departments such as laboratory managers, staff, and IT (Information Technology) must all work together to develop the blueprint and vision of the LIMS project, as well as what the expected outcomes are.

The first step in the RFP process is performing a laboratory needs assessment. A needs assessment provides a very effective way to convey to potential LIMS vendors what the LIMS is expected to do for the laboratory, in terms of defined goals and objectives.

This presentation will discuss the entire process and the many benefits of utilizing a RFP to obtain a LIMS and ensure a successful LIMS implementation. Important factors in utilizing the LIMS Request for Proposal process include:

  • Conducting a Needs Assessment
  • Analyzing Needs Assessment Results
  • LIMS Features and Functionality Requirements
  • RFP Structure
  • RFP Content
  • RFP Evaluation
  • Vendor Selection Criteria

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