How Mismanaged Lab Data Leads to Grant Losses

June 29, 2021   |   Lab Management
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When researchers submit a grant application to a potential funding source, one element that always comes into play is data. While data can tie back to information that supports the need for your research, it’s also a matter of having relevant documentation to back your results and build trust.

The issue is that historical lab data is not always readily available to personnel. Labs that lean on pen-and-paper-based lab notebooks or disparate lab systems may find it difficult to locate past data — and as the amount of lab data collected and stored grows, the problem increases.

Using the example of freezer temperature records — a critical factor in assuring the safety and quality of lab samples — we’ll showcase how ineffective lab data management can cause missed grant funding opportunities, and provide a solution to streamline processes.

When Lab Data Management Is Ineffective

While a grant application may request freezer temperature records for lab samples from the beginning of the research project, a lab may only have temperature data that dates back a year or two. For labs who depend on on-site data storage for security reasons or due to the capabilities of their on-site freezer temperature monitoring system, limitations in network storage inside the lab can be a common culprit for lost or limited temperature records; meanwhile, the mismanagement of paper-based documentation can also be to blame. In either scenario, the failure to fully document the freezer storage temperatures can lead to the loss of competitive funding, as it can’t be proven that the lab samples have been stored at proper temperatures, and are still viable.

Alternatively, it may be a case where the temperature data for samples is available but takes a significant amount of time to access and compile. This creates a less-than-ideal scenario for the principal investigator applying for the grant, as it creates extra administrative work and takes time away from their research. Considering the rigid timelines tied to grant applications, this can be especially burdensome.

How CORIS Improves Lab Data Management

The CORIS remote temperature monitoring system works to preserve the safety and quality of your lab samples — with the data immediately on hand to prove it. Real-time notifications are sent to alert lab personnel of temperature issues in freezers and refrigerators, with all of the collected data stored permanently on the CORIS servers and available to view, graph, download or report on at any time. So when you need to generate a report for a grant application that covers several years’ worth of temperature data, the information will be right at your fingertips and available at any time in the future.

Don’t let data storage and management weigh down your lab operations. Be prepared for new grant opportunities with CORIS monitoring systems. Contact us today to learn more.