How to Maintain Ongoing Experiments During Vacation

You have worked hard designing your experiment.  You have your cultures ready and your specimen are growing perfectly.  Then you remember that you are supposed to take your family vacation next week when you should be collecting long-awaited data on your specimen and keeping track of your experiments.  This leaves you wondering how to reconcile taking a vacation and not sacrificing months of work by stopping experiments and data collection.  The perfect solution is an online monitoring system allowing you to electronically track the progress of your research even when you are unable to be in the lab.

Delegating Lab Tasks

Many scientists have used spreadsheets to keep track of specimen - when they were started, when they expire, and to make notes on their research progress.  While this solution is somewhat functional in the lab, it is ultimately impossible to perform complex data entry into your lab computer and monitor ongoing experiments when you are away on vacation.  There are many ways to track what is happening in your lab even when you cannot be in the office, but a spreadsheet is both difficult to manage remotely and not convenient for access by multiple project collaborators or laboratory personnel.

One solution to maintaining experiments during vacation is to delegate some of your responsibilities.  Many tasks related to your experiments involve observation and data entry.  If you have a lab technician, you can have the tech make your observations and record the results even when you are away.  If required, that same tech can also send you your results as they are recorded so you can provide feedback, track inconsistencies in your colleague’s observation and recording methods, and offer real-time changes in protocol and experiment design.

Keeping Track of the Lab While Away

Download BioData's Vacation Checklist

Some of the most arduous tasks in the lab revolve around the management and structure of the lab itself.  You must keep track of more than your specimens, but of everything in the laboratory (such as protocols, reagents, ordering supplies, managing collaborations, etc.) The question many scientists face exceeds how to take care of experiments during vacation time, but how to take care of the management of the lab and all of the other details described above that must be monitored while the scientist is away.

BioData’s online management system is an optimal tool in organizing your lab, tracking research samples and progress, tracking your supplies and what materials and resources you have on hand and what you may need to order.  This type of seamless laboratory organization can increase the efficiency of the lab by cutting down on paperwork, save money by preventing unnecessary supply ordering or repetitive experiments, and make your lab infinitely more competitive by facilitating collaboration and increasing cohesion in communication.

For any scientist worried about taking care of experiments, reagents and specimen during vacation the solutions are clear-cut and easy to implement:  having a trusted collaborator or technician monitor data observation and results, planning ahead to order supplies, forge collaborations and arrange data collection and most importantly of all, signing up for BioData’s revolutionary, web based, affordable system will allow you to keep track of everything that happens in your lab remotely.