If you’re in lab management, you have to deal with a ridiculous amount of stuff going in to the lab (and some going out, which I will cover in a later post). Even if the lab budget is in the tens of millions, administration will get extremely antsy if you can’t account for everything in the lab.
So you need to track all deliveries and make sure that they are where they say they are. Here are some simple upgrades that you can use to track that things are where they should be:
1. Keep a delivery book, and make sure the delivery staff sign it. A delivery book is the easiest way to keep track of things that enter your lab. Establish a policy that all delivery staff must sign the book if they want you to sign their delivery note. Then set up the book in three divisions:
On the left, put the date of delivery as well as the signature of the delivery personnel.
In the centre, a description of what has been delivered including purchase order number.
On the right, have both the person who has received it from the delivery personnel sign it, and the person who collects it from whatever storage space you have designated.
On which note…
2. Have a designated area where deliveries can wait until they are collected. That way, you are never blindsided by things “just going missing somehow”. Everyone knows what should be where. Simple.
The two special
3. Communicate these requirements continually to all staff. Put this reminder in your weekly email to the lab. That is absolutely essential.