Lab Manager | Run Your Lab Like a Business

Cover Story |  Volume 8 - Issue 11  |  December 2013

Social Media

The Genie is Out of the Bottle

Sections

Business Management

Social Media: The Genie is Out of the Bottle

Social Media: The Genie is Out of the Bottle

“All sound and fury signifying nothing” pretty much sums up the scientific establishment’s take on Twitter, Facebook, and company at the dawning of social media. Given researchers’ reputation as a media-averse, socially restrained crowd, social media seemed the worst of all worlds.

Negotiating Service Contracts

Negotiating Service Contracts

Knowing standard contract language is crucial in securing favorable terms and conditions

Sourcing the Right Reagent

Sourcing the Right Reagent

Managing lab purchases and juggling finances are among the top priorities for lab managers, and as the world of research reagents continues to expand, they are faced with the growing challenge of cost-efficiently acquiring high-quality reagents for the lab.

Dealing with the Digital Deluge

Dealing with the Digital Deluge

One great thing about science today is that it’s more social than ever. We’re no longer exclusively on the bench, isolated with our work.

Leadership and Staffing

Political Science - Part 1

Political Science - Part 1

Organizational politics involves trades, exchanges of favors, relationships, reprisals, obstructionism and coalition-building. This sometimes goes beyond the normal process of getting the job done and the normal interchanges with peers and colleagues.

How to Avoid SWOT Analysis Paralysis in your Lab

How to Avoid SWOT Analysis Paralysis in your Lab

Logically, one would think that once SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis is learned, people and teams would rise to new heights of productivity and team synergy. However, since that is the rare case and not the norm, perhaps changing the focus and methodology of SWOT is in order. “Analysis paralysis” occurs when a team becomes so lost in the process of examining and evaluating the elements of SWOT that they are unable to make a decision or change a process using the new information.

Lab Design and Furnishings

hand holding erlenmeyer flask

Designing Labs for Lean Operation

The design, layout, and placement of laboratories have significant impact on lab processes, behaviors, and communications

Laboratory Technology

Accessing Instrument Data in the Digital Era

Accessing Instrument Data in the Digital Era

In the digital era, data is tied to the instrument’s data system, unlike before when an instrument could change but users could still access its data in paper charts and notebooks. That means that in today’s world, careful planning is needed in order to avoid data system changes that can impact access to important instrument data.

Technology News December 2013

The latest equipment, instruments and system introductions to the laboratory market. This month, we also highlight some of the vendors who will be exhibiting at SLAS2014.

Ask the Expert

Setting up a Stem Cell Culture Lab: Dos and Don'ts

Philip Schwartz, PhD, supervisor and senior scientist and director of the National Human Neural Stem Cell Resource at the Children’s Hospital of Orange County Research Institute, talks to Contributing Editor Tanuja Koppal, PhD, about the subtle particulars and expertise needed to design and maintain a laboratory dedicated to culturing stem cells.

Lab Health and Safety

Disinfection Dilemma

Disinfection Dilemma

Since their introduction, liquid sporicides have become one of the products of choice for many biological research and production facilities wherever high-level microbial control is critical. Although they are marketed as low-toxicity products, appropriate care during use is essential to prevent potentially dangerous conditions, exposures, and injuries.

Lab Health and Safety Tips

Questions to Ask When Conducting Experiments with Hazards or Potential Hazards

Questions to Ask When Conducting Experiments with Hazards or Potential Hazards

Can you identify the hazards that are present? Are they chemical, physical, biological, mechanical, electrical, radiation, noise, stress, or high/low pressure? Those are life’s nine hazards and you should look for them before beginning an experiment.

Product Focus

Pipettes: Ergonomics and Electronics

Pipettes: Ergonomics and Electronics

Pipetting is part of nearly every laboratory’s workflow. Yet this established technology continues to undergo improvements, most related to usability and consistency.

Product Focus: GC Systems

Product Focus: GC Systems

For all its maturity and secure establishment in chemical analysis, predicting the future of gas chromatography is an exercise in uncertainty.

Product Focus: Specialty Gases

Chemical processing and analysis are fueling a resurgence of interest in highly purified specialty gases. Novel gas-phase chemical reactions reduce the number of unit operations and side products while eliminating the disposal of toxic solvents.

Product Focus: Baths and Chillers

Product Focus: Baths and Chillers

Across research laboratories and industrial manufacturing facilities, many processes must be kept at a specific temperature, and that requires baths and chillers.

CO2 Incubators:More Features Demand More Questions when Shopping for Environmental Control

CO2 Incubators:More Features Demand More Questions when Shopping for Environmental Control

In a 2012 report, Global Industry Analysts in San Jose, California forecast a growing market for carbon dioxide (CO2) incubators. That comes as no surprise given this technology’s laundry list of applicable fields, which includes cell and tissue culture, protein synthesis, and much more.

Research-Specific Labs

Perspective On: A Food & Beverage Quality Control Lab

Perspective On: A Food & Beverage Quality Control Lab

Lifeline Foods’ lab, which does quality control testing on the corn products the company produces before they are shipped to both domestic and international food and beverage manufacturers, faces unique challenges. We explore the management and communication issues necessary to maintain that lab’s success.

INSIGHTS

INSIGHTS on Streamlining a Microbiology Laboratory

INSIGHTS on Streamlining a Microbiology Laboratory

Microbiology—the study of microscopic organisms, mostly single-celled— is one of the deepest, broadest scientific disciplines.

Surveys

Cold Storage Survey 2013 Results

Freezers and refrigerators are an integral part of any laboratory that requires temperature controlled storage. 

2013 Shaker Survey Results

The wide variety of lab-shaker designs on the market reflects the increasing diversity of scientific experimentation. Labs now use a greater range of sample sizes than ever before, from liters to microliters.

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Time to Upgrade?

Is it Time for a New BSC?

Is it Time for a New BSC?

Biological safety cabinets (BSCs) are crucial for the safety of staff and the protection of products, so it’s important to know when they should be upgraded.

How it Works

How Streamlining DNA Library Preparation for NGS Works

Scientists have been combining new and old approaches to refine sequencing, but challenges remain 

Digital PCR for GMO Quantification

Digital PCR for GMO Quantification

Food testing labs have traditionally used conventional PCR and quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) to detect the presence of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in food and feed. When quantification is required, GMO content in these samples is expressed in relative terms as the ratio of the quantity of the transgene, which is the nucleic acid fragment introduced in the host genome, to that of an endogene, a gene normally found in the host genome. 

How a Next-Generation Integrated Pipetting Platform Works

As laboratory budgets tighten and laboratory automation purchases come under scrutiny, R&D efforts are still expected to function efficiently and with increased data quality.