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Using the Inventory module
Using the Inventory module

An introduction to our fully customisable inventory module to keep everything organised and tracked

Jenny Hu avatar
Written by Jenny Hu
Updated over a week ago

Don't let your Inventory slow you down. Our fully customisable inventory manager enables you to track every important detail for any item or lab-made material and share it with your team. From quantities and location to QR codes and lineage, Labstep makes better inventory management a simple matter. You can even share it across workspaces!

How does the Labstep Inventory and Order Management module work?

Your Inventory is comprised of the following:

  • Resources and Resource items

Resources can be used to capture all the details of something that you wish to use or use in your research (e.g. Acetone). You can attach resources to your protocols and experiments.

Resource items refer to specific items of a Resource in your Inventory. These are always associated with a particular Resource and can be attached to experiments only (e.g. Acetone bottle 1). You can have multiple resource items related to a Resource. This feature is great for tracking which batch or lot of a resource you used in an experiment to help troubleshoot experiments when they have gone wrong.

Only Resource Items have features associated with the tangible item, such as quantity, QR code and location.

Both resources and resource items have a "Metadata" tab that can store important information. Resource metadata fields can be quickly populated by selecting a category, such as Cell Lines or Chemicals. See below for how you can create and manage Resource Categories.

  • Order Requests

When you need something for your research, more often than not, someone else has to purchase it for you. Order requests are an easy way to detail all the information about an item so that the person in your team responsible for purchasing can get you the right thing. The order request is also used for the purchaser to keep the item requester in the loop. You can add the purchase information, such as PO, shipping information and price paid. Find out more here.

  • Resource Categories

The items you use to conduct your research often belong to different categories.

For example, BL3.1 is a Cell Line, while HCl is a Chemical.

Keep track of these different items and the metadata related to each category by using Labstep Inventory Categories. You can create Categories such as Cell Line and Chemical, with custom metadata fields for all of the details you want to track. You may also want to set default values for category metadata fields to help you fill these in later.

When creating Resources, select which category it belongs to. You can then choose which of these fields you want to add to the resource.

How do I populate my Inventory?

Whether you want to import an inventory or create a one-off item, populating your Labstep Inventory is easy. 

If you already have an existing lab inventory in XLSX, CSV, or a FileMaker database, you can upload it into your account in no time using our easy import tool. Select an item category to associate the relevant metadata fields to your inventory items instantly. With the import tool, you can create both the Resources and the related Resource Items. Find out more here.

Labstep team tip: You can also create single Resources by selecting 'New resource' from the Resource view page. You can generate Resource Items from a Resource 'Item View' tab by selecting 'New item'.

One Inventory, multiple Workspaces:

With Labstep, you can create one Inventory, and share it with other workspaces and track your items. This means that when a collaborator adds a Material to a protocol/experiment and deducts the amount, it will automatically update the new amount/quantity in the Inventory for all workspaces it has been shared with.

We recommend you create a separate workspace for your Inventory and then share it with the necessary workspaces. To see how to share content, click here.

Labstep team tip: You can do the same for Instruments & Devices. This way, no more double-booking!

Still need help?

Contact us here or start a conversation with a member of our team using our in-app chat.

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