A LIMS for the Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) Industry

Among the many customers presenting at Launch2015, Core Informatics’ UGM, was Robert Doris of Sun Products Corporation. He discussed his experience with one of Core’s strengths — data management.

Data Management After Organizations Merge

Sun Products Corporation became a $2 billion company following a merger in 2008. While that revenue was good for business, (Sun Products commanded a 95% share of the retail brand market), it wasn’t as good for its data management. Doris, Manager of Applied Measurement at Sun Products, relayed some of the difficulties his company experienced as it tried to manage huge amounts of data without a defined strategy. This problem led to costly incidents in certain areas:

  • Patent applications – Patent applications were missing data. The search for the data was time consuming and caused delays. These delays directly affected the timeline of bringing new products to market.
  • Patent challenges – The search for patent challenge data became expensive. The company ended up spending significant resources in hopes of rectifying the situation. “We had a couple of patent challenges,” Doris said. One of them, “cost us about $400,000 to look for data, just that one challenge.”
  • Claims challenges – Claims challenges faced by Sun Products resulted in the company having to take a commercial off the air due to its inability to produce data required by the regulatory agency for verification of claims.

These challenges around missing and hard-to-find data resulted in the R&D division deciding to find an infrastructure to manage the huge amounts of data it generated.

Sun Products Wanted One System for All Data — In or Out

According to Doris, some data at Sun Products accumulated and flowed in obscure ways. For instance, dead ends could pop up because certain data was managed by an employee who kept the information in a notebook locked in his desk. Searches for this type of data sometimes caused unnecessary delays, slowing down the department.

Doris identified the Core LIMS as the solution to Sun’s problem. The keys were Core’s flexibility and ease of use. The Core LIMS consolidates data and projects, which solved Sun’s data flow problem. Sun Products incorporated the Core LIMS into the daily workflow of its R&D team.

The Core platform’s capability to be molded into virtually anything the lab desires enabled Sun Products to use the system to create inventory of all its raw materials. This solution was a requirement to prevent the use of raw materials that were expired. The implementation of the Core system also eliminated large queries. Now, with one simple project code, everything within that project is filtered and presented to the user. In addition, all users’ notes can be in one easy-to-spot location, e.g. safety data sheets and technical data sheets, simplifying the R&D process, and processes across the entire company.

Core Brings Order to Massive Data Flow

Before Core Informatics, Sun Products Corporation was dealing with a disparate information management strategy. The data coming from the R&D division needed a powerful organizational system to make it one of the strongest areas of Sun Products—it found the solution by implementing the Core LIMS. The use of the LIMS has saved the company time and money.