Blogs

Field Types

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There are several different field types that can be selected. Depending on which type is selected, additional options will be displayed once you fill out the initial fields on the Field screen and click Create Field. The additional options are listed below under each field type: Text Use the text field type when you would like to allow users to type in free-form text using letters, number and/or symbols. Size - The maximum number of characters that can be entered in the field.  Enter a whole number. Default Value - The text that will appear in the field when a new issue is created. Can be left blank. Lookup Use a lookup field when there is ...
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Spring Newsletter

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The 2017 BSI User Conference is fast approaching! It will be held Wednesday, April 26 th and Thursday, April 27 th , at The Hotel at Arundel Preserve, in Hanover, MD. A variety of topics related to the theme “Sharing Stories, Exploring Potential” will be covered during the conference. A presentation given by Gwendolyn Goedbloed, the Head of the Janssen R&D Global Biobank, will explore BSI’s role in standardizing workflows, managing repositories, and increasing efficiency on a global scale. Steve Berg, a Senior Project Specialist at Precision for Medicine, will present on collection kit workflows. A presentation from a leading industry expert will shed ...
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Notifications

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BSI provides many options allowing the user to customize their experience and tailor it to their needs and preferences. One such example of this is the Notifications Preferences BSI has. This feature allows the user to change preset notification options and remove them all together if needed. To locate where the Notification Preferences are a user can go to: Tools User Profile Select the Preferences Tab Notifications under User Preferences table This dialog will open up: Through this dialog users can determine which of the listed functions they do or not need notifications for. Those fields which are set to ‘True/Yes’ will prompt ...
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Happy New Year! This past year has brought many changes for BSI, both large and small. In 2016, IMS deployed 11 updates to BSI, each filled with enhancements and features that significantly expanded BSI’s capabilities to improve your BSI experience. Your suggestions and comments have been the catalyst for many of the improvements, and IMS considers the impact of any change to our customers during every step of each release. BSI has grown to include the ability for studies to require an e-Signature when users complete certain actions in a workflow. We have also added the ability to track patients across multiple studies using a Universal Subject record. Filters ...
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In the last quarter, new and exciting features have been introduced to BSI. The ability to use e-signatures functionality has been added to production databases. E-signatures serve as a digital affirmation that the user completed the action. Now, studies can require an e-signature from users completing certain actions on specimens within that study. Actions for which a study owner may choose to require an e-signature include: new specimen commits, specimen movements, specimen data updates, specimen deletions and/or specimen approval for inclusion in a requisition. Additionally, BSI now supports Single Sign On (SSO) integration. This integration applies your ...
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 The first half of this year has flown by quickly, bringing many changes with it, especially for BSI. We are constantly developing BSI to better serve your needs, both within the system and outside of it. Within BSI, we have added, and continue to develop, exciting new features to support your work. Outside of the BSI system, IMS has created a network of resources and collaborative discussion: the BSI Support site. The BSI Support site is a separate web software providing a portal for your organization’s continued growth and success. As you may have noticed recently, the BSI user’s guide is now available on the support website, allowing rolling updates so ...
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In honor of April Fool’s day, let’s begin with a joke: Did you hear about the famous microbiologist who traveled to and collected samples for her biobank from thirty different countries, and in the process learned to speak six new languages? She was a woman of many cultures. Jokes aside, IMS is dedicated to constantly learning, innovating, and progressing to provide you with the best product and support we can. In aid of that goal, we are attending two preeminent international conferences in the upcoming quarter: the Bio-IT World Conference & Expo and the ISBER 2016 Conference. The Bio-IT World conference, held this April 5 th -7 th in Boston, MA, ...
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The past year was full of exciting change and forward momentum for BSI! In response to your feedback and requests, we have reinforced the system by adding new and refining existing functional capabilities. The 2015 year saw 11 software releases and 165 enhancements to BSI. In addition, we welcomed several new members to the BSI Team this year. These new additions to the BSI family will help us maintain a high-level of development and support as the BSI project continues to grow. We have cultivated your ideas and suggestions to expand BSI’s capabilities in a host of concrete ways. To provide you with a singular portal for support, training and guidance, ...
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The Search Tool

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     Keeping records of specimens in software like BSI is only helpful if users can easily locate, track, and work on them. Particularly for facilities that handle large numbers of specimens, finding a particular specimen, set of specimens, or batch can be like finding a needle in a haystack. It is important that tracking software like BSI provides users with simple, intuitive tools for finding data and keeping tabs on their work.      BSI meets this challenge with the Search tool; an easy-to-use tool, available anywhere throughout the system that users may want to find records, narrow down lists and filter results! The tool includes a list of searchable fields ...
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'Assign To' Tool

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     One of the challenges faced by specimen handling facilities, particularly those with a large specimen handling staff, is keeping work organized. Fluid and efficient workflow often requires many moving parts, with some specimens being received while others are being processed, and still others are being prepared for shipment. Often, different steps in a specimen processing workflow are done by a different set of staff, with specimens changing hands multiple times throughout their lifetime. It is important that specimen tracking software, like BSI, is not only able to capture this flow, but is able to make the process as clear and straightforward as possible ...
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Assign BSI IDs Tool

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     Possibly the single most important thing that successful specimen tracking depends on is the ability to uniquely identify every single piece of biomaterial that moves through a specimen handling facility. No amount of organization, technology, or man power can guarantee smooth tracking or auditing if specimens lack an ID which differentiates them from potentially thousands of other specimens moving through a lab. It can be challenging creating and maintaining unique identification without the proper tools. Furthermore, should a system for assigning unique ID’s fail, the consequences can be chaotic and difficult to resolve.      The key to managing this ...
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     One of the challenges faced by any specimen processing facility is associating various types of related data in a manner such that these relationships can be queried. For facilities that store subject data, it can be difficult to track and organize the data associations between these subjects and the individual sample and specimen records that the facility receives and processes. BSI aims to simplify this with the ‘Find Subject IDs’ and ‘Create/Edit Subject’ tools.      Available in any batch editor in BSI, the Find/Create Subject tools allow users to quickly and easily perform a number of actions at once. First, users can search the system for existing ...
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Select Rows Tool

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     There are many points throughout the workflow process where a user may want to apply processing tasks, assign data or report on a particular subset of specimens in an editor. Manually selecting the desired specimens may not be a daunting task when the batch contains only 10 or 20 records, however, batches often contain many hundreds or thousands of specimens. In this case, selecting records by hand can be frustrating and highly inefficient. BSI's Select Rows tool helps to streamline this process by highlighting rows according to user defined criteria.      The Select Rows tool appears as a dialog presenting users with an array of options. Some of ...
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We have already explored the ways in which BSI allows users to create container types, use those containers to build locations structures, and finally how to edit and manipulate these structures. Now we will focus on how BSI allows users to work with specimens and view specimen related data right from the Locations manager. Once a structure has been established, it is often necessary to perform work on the specimens stored there. While some facilities perform regular and routine work on stored specimens, others may only interact with stored specimens to send them permanently to another facility. BSI accounts for all potential workflows by providing users ...
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In the last Locations Structures article we discussed the way in which BSI allows users to design a virtual storage architecture that matches the real storage options available in their specimen storage and handling facilities. BSI does this by providing users with the tools to first create custom container types, and then construct them into totally configurable location hierarchies. Next, we will explore additional functionality of BSI’s Location module including some of the ways in which users can edit location structures, interact with the specimens stored in locations, and view data associated with locations and specimens. Last time we explained that ...
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One of the primary functions of software like BSI is to provide tracking for the specimens that move through the workflows of specimen handling facilities. BSI does this by providing users with a virtual platform to record all actions and tasks performed on these specimens, in a linear and intuitive way. BSI can be thought of as a real-time, virtual copy of everything that is being done to materials at each point in a workflow process. From the time they are packaged up in a shipment and sent off to a lab, until they are processed and moved to permanent storage, or even sent out to a new facility, BSI provides users with the tools to customize the virtual processing ...
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In previous articles of the BSI Feature Focus Dashboard series, it was explained that each user has the ability to configure a unique and persistent Dashboard homepage which is comprised of a selection of widgets from the Dashboard’s Widget Library. One of the goals of the Dashboard is to provide users with an immediate overview of their work and their data. We also explored how the ‘Assigned To’ widgets can help users track the work assigned to them. In this article we will take a look at how the ‘Reporting’ widgets can give users an intuitive and comprehensive summary of their data at a single glance. The Reporting widgets are able to present users with ...
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In the last BSI Feature Focus on the BSI Dashboard, we explored how this new module can give users an instant overview of their work by providing them with customizable widgets displaying a dynamic range of workflow elements. Today we are going to take a closer look at some of these widgets in order to highlight how each one can help users save time, stay organized, and maximize workflow efficiency. All users will have access to the Widget Library where they can select, configure, name and add widgets to their own, personal Dashboard. These widgets can be removed at any time, and many can even be reconfigured right from the Dashboard itself. Each user will ...
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Dashboard, Part I

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BSI is excited to announce the release of the BSI Dashboard! The Dashboard will operate as a new optional start page in the BSI Client application, providing users with an immediate and comprehensive overview of their work. Furthermore, it will operate at a user level with persistence between sessions, so each user will be able to completely configure their own Dashboard. The Dashboard is designed to act as a gateway to the system via configurable widgets that give users a simple, intuitive subset of the overall functionality of BSI. These widgets provide a comprehensive set of tools including reports, charts, graphs, tasks, batches, and even useful tips ...
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Right Mouse Button Menus

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A major priority for any user of specimen processing software is that the system provides configurability, power, and broad functionality without sacrificing usability or efficient processing. This can pose quite a challenge for software like BSI, since adding tools and processing capability often means adding navigation requirements and mouse clicks. This kind of additional work for the user can add up to a significant loss of efficiency. BSI meets this challenge by providing the user with hidden menus located everywhere throughout the system, tailored to the user’s current work, and accessible by simply right clicking. Whether a user is organizing containers ...
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