Compounds Australia (CA) is Australia’s national compound management facility, providing industry standard microtube and microplate small molecule compound library storage and logistics to research users. The facility is not a commercial enterprise, but rather, an academic core facility, which provides research services to internal and external members.
Compounds Australia currently has 33 member organisations (memberships are signed at an institutional level) within which are approx. 75 supported research groups and between 150-200 individual research users - located across 5 Australian States and 1 Territory as well as a small number of international sites. Each of these groups/users utilises Compounds Australia’s services in different ways and, as such, Compounds Australia must be highly flexible, implementing workflows to meet the differing needs of diverse user group. Broadly, CA provides the following key research services:
- Provision of assay-ready microplates (96, 384, 1536 well microplates; in various labware and layouts) containing compounds selected from a user’s own Closed access compound library.
- Provision of assay-ready microplates of compounds (96, 384, 1536 well; various labware and layouts) selected from Compounds Australia’s Open Access libraries.
- Storage services (microtubes/microplates; various formats) for Closed libraries (single and/or multi owners).
- Storage services (microtubes/microplates; various formats) for Open access collections (single owners).
Compounds Australia is seeking to implement a new software solution that will provide the overarching platform for managing all workflows within the facility. To efficiently generate the high volume (14,000 in 2017) of assay-ready plates provided to research users each year, the IT solution will be required to manage
(1) CA’s compound inventory,
(2) integrate existing and new storage instrumentation,
(3) drive liquid handling and plate generation workflows operationalised via a number of robotic platforms and liquid handlers sourced from different vendors, and
(4) provide an accessible web-based / cloud-based portal for research users.
The University has determined the following are priority requirements, integral to the required software solution.
- Inventory Management and Auditing;
- Ordering, Order tracking, and Data provision; and
- Workflow Processing
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