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2024 LIMS Trends

Contributors: LaToya Lee Jones

Clarkston’s team of Laboratory Information Management System consultants have highlighted the top LIMS trends that businesses should consider. Read all 4 trends for 2024 by downloading the full report here.

The Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) landscape in 2024 is a dynamic one, driven by accelerating advancements in technology and evolving industry needs. This year’s trends report delves into the key drivers propelling market growth and how LIMS solutions are adapting to meet the demands of an increasingly competitive and data-driven scientific environment. 

As we look ahead to 2024, the four trends we expect to see for LIMS include increased integration with instruments and other software systems; navigating market share challenges; a need for digital transformation, including the growing adaption of advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities; and leveraging LES (Laboratory Execution System) and ELN (Electronic Laboratory Notebook).

2024 LIMS Trends

Trend #1: Increased LIMS Integration

LIMS integrations have historically included varying degrees of inventory or testing data transferred between the organization’s ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) and their LIMS, or a basic integration of results passed from instruments to LIMS.  The Lab of the Future has far more demanding integration and automation needs, which increases laboratory throughput and efficiency, reduces technician errors, enables large-scale analytics and AI, and drives down costs.  While there’s a tremendous amount of benefit to be gained with this level of integration, there are still technical hurdles that must be overcome to achieve them. 

In the past, instrument integration was typically set up in an instrument-by-instrument manner, which is time-consuming from a development and validation standpoint. Today, there’s an increasing number of vendors providing middleware solutions that tout pre-configured, modular integration solutions. For example, do you need to integrate a particular brand of HPLC? The vendor has likely already configured a template for the integration of that instrument. There will be efforts required to ensure that the appropriate test method data is transferred to the corresponding results in LIMS, but the amount of effort has been reduced. Additionally, once that method is defined, it is easily applied to other instruments of the same class. As additional instruments are onboarded, a profile can be assigned through the middleware where instruments can be integrated and validated more efficiently. 

As companies push their manufacturing and laboratory operations into a more automated landscape, the ability of LIMS to integrate into a unified platform becomes critical. For example, advanced robotic sample storage solutions can allow technicians to select samples and have them delivered much like a vending machine. An integrated LIMS could send the required sample data to the freezer, which automatically picks the correct samples. Additional automation could move the samples through the facility to a designated sample area for technicians to retrieve. Other types of automation, such as robotics that perform method execution, can also integrate into the LIMS, sending the appropriate sample and test method data to the robot for execution. Following execution, the result data can be integrated back to LIMS. While this is a nascent area, the possibilities for laboratory throughput and efficiency are tremendous. 

Download the Full 2024 LIMS Trends Report Here

Trend #2: Navigating Market Share Challenges

The LIMS market was estimated at $2.3 billion in 2023 with an estimated Compound Annual Growth Rate of 6.8-7.8% through the end of the decade. As more companies in many industries continue to push for digital laboratories and enhanced automation, the demand for LIMS, the core of laboratory technology, will continue to grow. 

Older, more established applications with a strong history of on-premise implementation will continue to face challenges from web- and cloud-hosted applications. Many other application suites outside of the laboratory have transitioned from on-premise to the cloud, and LIMS is no exception. Additionally, the desire to reduce dependence on internal teams to manage the LIMS and the associated master data is leading to a rise in SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) LIMS, with multiple vendors starting to provide SaaS options. As with many other types of software, there will be a growing contingent of companies that wish to outsource management and hosting of LIMS, versus those that wish to keep the application on-premise to increase control over the application and reduce dependency on external providers. 

New players continue to move into the LIMS market or into different segments of the LIMS market. Veeva is piloting a new LIMS product that does not have large market penetration yet; however, their presence and relationships in the eQMS (electronic Quality Management System) space could significantly improve their chances of success. Products such as Veeva LIMS provide a challenge for some of the more established products (LabWare, LabVantage, Thermo Fisher Sample Manager, and StarLIMS), which control  approximately 80% of the LIMS market. LabWare and LabVantage have decades of development history and relationships with buyers, but time will tell if they’re able to respond to new functional offerings to maintain their market share.  Continue reading by downloading the full report below.

Download the Full 2024 LIMS Trends Report Here

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Tags: LIMS, 2024 Trends