A multinational chemical company needed to upgrade to Waters Empower™ 3 FR5 CDS because they had concerns about operating system support for their older versions. The client ran multiple Empower instances across a number of sites in the U.S., Europe, and China.

The client’s management and laboratory informatics teams felt that internal resources were insufficient to perform the complex work that was required, and selected CSols to support the upgrade and consolidation efforts based on our Empower CDS expertise and specific experience with Empower 3 upgrades. CSols’s CDS experts have the deep and broad infrastructure and CDS expertise to perform this type of analysis—thoroughly and efficiently.

Objectives and Challenges

The goal of this project was to achieve an up-to-date and globally harmonized CDS implementation. CSols began by capturing a complete picture of the current state of the Empower CDS footprint.

The first challenge was that the original implementations—at multiple sites with multiple instances—mostly had been done on a one-off basis, making the cataloging of existing versions and license statuses a complex and time-consuming task.

A second major challenge was that few stakeholders had the Empower expertise to fully answer the consultant’s questions or provide the appropriate information.

CSols’s Role in the Solution

The execution of this project required the CSols Senior Business Analyst’s general Empower and Empower upgrade expertise, understanding of laboratory workflows, and experience mapping possible deployment and upgrade paths with their associated risks and benefits. CSols’s expertise was crucial in creating a comprehensive deployment plan for such a complex, multinational implementation. The CSols consultant leveraged many years of personal experience with complex networks and enterprise Empower installations to ask the right questions and guide the global IT organization to the highest value path forward.

Completed the following:

  • Serve as the Empower CDS technical SME to determine the current state and possible future states of the upgrade
  • Assess current Empower 3 CDS landscape at 11 sites leveraging a deep understanding of forward compatibility with any future Empower 3 FRS CDS install
  • Evaluate the latency between sites to determine if sites can share an instance of Empower 3 globally or if a regional implementation would better meet client requirements

 Delivered the following:

CDS hardware and application inventory list for 11 sites, including:

  • Complete instrument inventories
  • CDS instances, standard and custom workflows, and number of users at each site with their related system roles
  • Electronic signature capabilities for each workstation
  • All CDS reports and outputs for each site

CDS strategic planning report containing:

  • Summary of the site-by-site impact assessment
  • Gap analysis between desired future state and current hardware and software configurations, to recommend replacement where needed
  • Best practices harmonization recommendations for enterprise-wide Empower 3 FRS deployment
  • Upgrade plan and recommendations, including possible paths forward for both applications and hardware
  • Best practices system support recommendations
  • Global implementation risk assessment and mitigation recommendations related to multi-national Empower­™ installation
  • Data required for the project team to establish ROI and obtain the requisite funding


  • The challenges encountered during the project were addressed by leveraging many years of experience with Empower systems, complex networks, and infrastructure to consolidate all Empower instances and achieve enterprise-level goals for standardization and efficiency.
  • The final report advised the client on the best path forward for potential upgrades to Empower 3 FR5, reducing the time spent on the project and, therefore, the overall costs.
  • The client did not have to pull internal resources from their existing work or hire a dedicated CDS resource.
  • The client was able to move forward with the upgrade and not only benefit from fewer risks but also realize lower costs than either postponing the upgrades or using internal resources for assessment and planning.
  • Without the detailed assessment and support of external resources, the client risked a steep learning curve, extra training hours, and a higher overall project cost.

If you would like to read the full story with additional detail, click here to request the case study.

Check out more projects that CSols has worked on by clicking here.

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