A major stumbling point in any laboratory relocation project can be budgets, which are often mis-calculated.
This is probably because budgetary planning can often be overlooked in favour of the technical detail involved in moving such sophisticated laboratory equipment – yet budgets will ultimately decide how effective a laboratory move will be, or if it happens at all.
Laboratory relocations often cost much more than customers believe. Reasons for this can be because the inventory is not accurate, which leads to additional costs for the decommissioning and recommissioning of equipment, issues around the OEM service / warranty agreements, and because the move unexpectedly has to be carried out in phases.
Unexpected delays can impact on your budget, which would be caused by any number of reasons including:
- Contractors over-running works. This would relate to the build itself and of course would have a knock-on effect to the whole project. This could lead to cancellation of booked services, cancellation costs and re-arrangement of services that, being later than planned, could have an impact on lost revenue or additional costs due to the labs not being ready.
- Facilities issues. In many instances, once instruments are placed onto the bench we will find problems such as the cable is not long enough, there are wrong connection points, services (gas, air, purified water etc) are not in place or not working. This can then potentially knock out the recommission schedule, which again means delays, cancellations and the lab/instrument not being ready for beneficial science when first calculated.
- Sometimes instruments can stop working during a relocation, and may become temperamental after being turned off. Once the service engineer is recommissioning, you can find issues with instruments which then need more work completing, or spares may need to be ordered. In addition, service engineers may not always turn up when they are meant to!
- For regulated environments, even when the instrument is unpacked, placed and recommissioned, that doesn’t necessarily mean the instrument or lab can start full operations again. An OQ may be required which can add additional hours to the recommissioning schedule. QA/QC will also need to confirm sign off of the document packet before the instrument is released to be used for beneficial science. This process can slow the release of instruments back to the scientists in the lab and ultimately end up stressing the budget with additional operational costs.
Any of the potential problems outlined above could in turn impact on a number of people internally or external from your organistion, including scientists, compliance teams, facilities managers and more.
As a specialist in laboratory relocation projects, Aport has extensive expertise in providing consultancy on budgetary management associated with such moves.
By working with you from the outset of the project and creating its scope, we can assist with the budget planning so that the budget forecast will be more accurate and can be folded into full project costs.
This includes mechanisms for change management moving from the initial planning phase into the actual execution of the project.
We also work with organisations on alternative project approach costing, including scenario and contingency planning. By actively considering every eventuality, we can forecast additional costs to be considered should a different approach to the project be required, minimising any adverse impact on your organisation.