Creating a Customer-Centric Roadmap for a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS)

As a world leader in the synthetic lubricant industry, Lubrizol combines complex specialty chemicals to improve the quality, performance, and value of consumer products while reducing their environmental impact. As a subsidiary company of Berkshire Hathaway, Lubrizol has over 34 labs/technical facilities and 60 manufacturing sites across more than 100 countries.

As a long-time customer of CQL, Lubrizol came to us to transform a lab management system that would take the complexity out of the customer’s daily work by improving the testing and reporting of oil samples between customers and distributors. Our strong relationship with Lubrizol helped the CQL strategy and design team develop a way to innovate the customer experience with LIMS.

Our process began by asking Lubrizol’s team to define the core features and business targets. From there, we created a tactical scope and identified business opportunities with a one-, three-, and five-year roadmap.

Services

Custom Software Solutions
Strategy & Innovation
Digital Business Strategy

Technology

iOS Development
Business Applications

Building a Customer-Centric Process for LIMS

Throughout the discovery process, CQL worked with Lubrizol’s team to identify opportunities to improve their lab management system and to better communicate with customers and distributors.

The team identified three key applications that would refine the oil sample testing and reporting process.

With these three service-oriented operating systems, customers could scan oil samples into the iOS mobile app. The mobile app would then transfer data to the desktop app, and that data would be gathered and generated into a detailed report for the customer via the web app portal.

iOS Mobile Application Simplifies LIMS Process

To simplify the customer’s submittal process and reduce errors, the team built a portal where customers could submit their oil samples. With the old method, handwriting notes on the capsule was often illegible. To address this, we built an iOS mobile app that could easily identify the sample’s information by scanning a unique barcode on the sample container.

Building a Customer Portal for LIMS

To ensure data was processed accurately and efficiently, CQL implemented a desktop app that centralized the LIMS process. The application allowed the data from hundreds of samples to be scanned and read by the system automatically, thus saving hours of manual entry.

Lab machines then tested the fluid samples within hours, sending the data to the desktop app where Lubrizol employees can then analyze the data and create reports that are both emailed to the customer and uploaded to a customer-facing web app for the customer to review.

This process eliminated days of manual work for Lubrizol, in turn, improving productivity, increasing the number of samples tested per day, and ultimately ROI.

LIMS Providing Crucial Information About Compressor and Pump Performance Data

Since the health of the oils and lubricants tells a lot about a compressor or pump’s performance, the LIMS customer-facing web portal provided a “first in the marketplace” process that afforded direct communications with customers and distributors regarding the status of their machine(s).

CQL built a responsive web app that would present sample data with intuitive reports specific to each customer. Customers would also be able to view their current oil analysis data and data history. This provides a simple way to monitor oil and equipment conditions, while possibly preventing complications from showing up down the road.

By designing a customer-centric LIMS portal, Lubrizol is able to share trend data and intuitive reporting with its three main users: customers, distributors, and OEMs.