In addition to the speed, accuracy and reliability, rapid microbiological methods (RMM) provide for colony counts, they can enhance one of the most costly sources of errors, wasted time and unnecessary investigations – data entry. When using the compendial method, human technicians must record every individual count by hand, a process that often leads to errors and OOS investigations. With an automated instrument like the Growth DirectTM System, results are automatically read, recorded and reported on a routine basis over the test period. The following are the top seven benefits rapid automated enumeration and reporting can provide in the quality control environment.
1. LIMS Integration
The Growth DirectTM System can integrate with existing laboratory information systems (LIMS), allowing for seamless data transfer from the instrument to the LIMs system. This connection not only makes it easier for quality control personnel to handle and process their testing data, it allows other stakeholders to instantly access information critical to continued production.
2. Trend Analysis
The Growth DirectTM System can also identify trends and help quality control personnel spot problem areas before they get out of hand. This feature is particularly useful for environmental monitoring of production environments. By spotting trends manufacturing area contamination, manufacturers can react to start investigations and minimize or eliminate any downtime.
3. Instant Access to Interim Counts
Interim counts are critical for long testing cycles and products awaiting shipment. With the compendial method, however, each interim count requires the same amount of quality control labor as a final count. On the other hand, the Growth DirectTM System performs counts every few hours, and technicians can always access the most recent counts – no additional labor or sample handling required.
4. Fewer Human Errors
The automation of both enumeration and reporting virtually eliminates human errors from the colony counting process. The Growth DirectTM System's CCD imaging equipment counts microcolonies with as few as ~100 cells, and its internal systems record and transfer the counts to LIMS.
5. Fewer Incubation-Related Errors
In addition to automating the counting process, the Growth DirectTM System also automates the transfer of samples for serial incubation. While technicians may transfer cassettes at the wrong times, automation ensures each transfer happens exactly when scheduled.
6. Labor Efficiency
When highly trained, highly paid technicians can avoid data entry altogether, they gain more time to spend on test design, interventions, SOP updates and other critical tasks. For manufacturers expanding with larger production volumes and new products, greater labor efficiency also reduces the need to add additinal staff as production increases.
7. Rapid Results
Finally, automated enumeration and reporting allow for far faster results than the traditional method. Instead of spending hours counting and recording samples, technicians can view results as soon as the Growth DirectTM System performs each count. Ultimately, faster results allow for fewer investigations, more targeted interventions and more uptime for manufacturers.
There are plenty more benefits of the Growth Direct™ System. Discover them by downloading our free guide “Quantifying the Economic Benefits of the Growth Direct™ System” today!