My first reaction to these types of efforts to create selection criteria for software is that of skepticism. There are so many brands and products out there and so many criteria to discuss, that it sounds like an overwhelming task. However, there are several aspects to this effort that give me some confidence in it. First of all, and probably most important, is that I happen to have known one of the authors of this Solutions Guide LIMS/ELN for quite a number of years and have come to value his opinion in these types of situations. The other factor to my increased confidence level is that this effort is specific to manufacturing environments, and I believe that taking such a focus is a step toward creating something useful. Yet one more reason I feel less skeptical is that the authors have created such a guide as this for MES for a long period of time, previously. That guide had been well-received. It had been done in a way to actually speed-up the selection process. Where customers think that it has helped them create their RFP to get to the demonstration phase, that is one positive effect it has had.
Putting all that aside, I have read through this questionnaire and have been given an overview of it with the opportunity to ask more questions and hear more of the rationale and methodology. One key element is that the authors have asked for verification on many points. In addition, they will cross-check that verification does actually do what it is supposed to do. In the past, while they have not just modified a vendor’s response, they have contacted vendors whose responses appear problematic. The answer is then either updated or is not published. Thus, mistakes and inconsistencies have been minimized. Overall, with the wide variety of relevant topics covered within this Solutions Guide LIMS/ELN, the user will find a lot of useful information inside this report. I am confident that I will learn something, as well.
Gloria Metrick, GeoMetrick Enterprises
LIMS/LES/ELN and IT Leader