The scientists and the management of a company which is about to embark on a journey of building their newest research centre know the uphill task well enough. Every decision made for the next few months is going to shape their rewards at the later stage. The scientist who had to work in a stinking laboratory, because of lack of air circulation, or the assistant who had to do with a non-functioning fume hood sash, would be on their toes while taking the minute decision. Every management executive who has sanctioned funds to redo the wrong execution of the exhaust system would be vigilant during the early meetings, to avoid design and execution glitches. And yet time and again, projects are haphazardly undertaken and implemented without the knowledge and proper systems.
At SbyD, the journey of lab building is the reward. We have been paying heed to the industry requirements from up close over the years. Learning new ways to communicate with the scientists, new ways to involve scientists in achieving results, making sure the users of the labs are adequately resourced in their choices, making sure our client feels safe while taking decisions. Every day of the year, we are trying to distil the essence of lab building down to the last details, only to improve this journey for the customer.
To engage with the scientist and to share their vision is an opportunity and a challenge. To make your journey seamless, we recommend choosing the right vendors the key. Following commonplace mistakes can be avoided while selecting a vendor.
Laboratories are a complex amalgamation of various utilities and services intertwined with aesthetic and functional requirements. To make this job easier its always advisable to choose a single point contact or a turnkey vendor for your lab construction. This will take care of the issue listed below:
Selecting non-laboratory vendor
Often times we have seen, laboratory projects being executed by non-laboratory vendors. This could make the process tumultuous for everyone involved since the engineering aspect of lab construction is overlooked. There are laboratory specialists, who possess a thorough understanding of lab furniture, fume hoods, HVAC, Gas Distribution Systems, Civil, Electrical, Safety & Security Systems, BMS and exhaust systems of laboratories. Therefore, make vendor selection the top priority the next time.
Master of All
Specificity in lab construction depending upon the industry has to be considered while awarding the project to a turnkey vendor. A furniture manufacturer for quality testing lab does not necessarily understand technicalities involved in research lab civil, electrical or HVAC work. Therefore choose a vendor with knowledge about all the aspects of the lab construction.
Familiarity with standards
Most of the laboratories follow certain norms, such as GLP, EN, BSI, ASHRAE, ISO, SEFA etc. Select a vendor with ample knowledge of these regulations. While selecting a vendor, the familiarity with standards is often overlooked, this results in rework after audits. This may propel you to rehire a vendor with familiarity with standards. This would make audits and accreditations at a later stage easier.
One of the most important criteria is the safety record of the vendor. Make inquiry into the past work record of the vendor and get as much information on safety norms adherence. This would be a pain point for the EHS department, if the vendor is not strictly adhering to safety regulations, PPE usage policies, and work hour regulations on the site.
Transparency in working
A turnkey vendor becomes the face of the management while dealing with sub-vendors and contractors. It is the act of balancing on the eye of the needle and must be done with complete transparency and integrity. The most common issue with client-vendor relationship is lack of trust, which could make or break the project delivery on time and within the prescribed budget. If vendors tell you only to stop looking at other options, it should ring an alarm bell.
Focus on energy efficiency
A lab’s energy bill is 3 to 4 times higher than an office of the same size. This is mainly because of the HVAC system, power-consuming lab equipment and 24 hours occupancy of labs. Hence your turnkey vendor must be aware of energy-efficient products and strategies to be used. It is proven that with a reasonable efficiency strategy, energy can be saved to the extent of 30-40%. Since this is a running cost, this provides you with a significant advantage to bring your costs down.
Behold, and all that is right shall fall in to place. These are some of the critical points to remember while selecting a vendor.
The last but most important, and not so palpable attribute is chemistry. Everyone likes to work with good people. Amicable relationships with vendors result in great work. Even though the art of chivalry is a rarity in business, SbyD takes pride in the relationships that are cultivated over the years. Thus the journey we take with you is our ultimate reward.