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Lab Instrument Support Industry Strategies Trends 2013 Analysis in New Research Report at

Dallas, TX (PRWEB) October 21, 2013

Proper maintenance of laboratory instrumentation is an important consideration to ensure that lab assets remain available to researchers. Minimizing downtime makes the research process more efficient. A variety of support options are available from original equipment manufacturers (OEM), small third party independent service organizations (ISO), large multi-vendor service (MVS) providers and internal support staffs. A specific aim of this global benchmarking study was to track the increasing use of/interest in MVS providers. Equal emphasis was given to soliciting opinion from persons who make or influence purchasing or service maintenance/support decisions for lab instruments in pharma, applied and academic research labs.

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The survey looked at the following aspects of lab instrument support and service as practiced today (2013) and in a few cases as predicted for the future (2016): the application areas that best describes respondent’s use of lab instruments; typical level of instrument use; reasonable and maximum hourly labour rates for an instrument service visit; reasonable expenses for a service call on top of an hourly rate; who is responsible for setting aside (allocating) an instrument support budget in respondent’s organization/facility; how an instrument support budget is funded; how lab instruments are currently maintained or serviced; respondents who have purchased an extended warranty or service contract from an instrument manufacturer; whether the extended warranty or service contract was considered worth the price paid; % of the original instrument value respondents expect to pay annually for instrument service and support; respondent’s philosophy on PM; preferred type of PM (i.e. instrument usage versus scheduled purely on calendar driven events); how obsolete instruments are supported; types of lab instrument respondents would you like see covered by a support agreement at their organization; respondents who have ever considered working with a third party MVS provider; current use of MVS providers; satisfaction with MVS providers used; level of MVS coverage wanted; MVS providers most associated with a list of desirable characteristics or attributes; basis for selecting an MVS provider; main reasons/drivers for using/considering an MVS provider; approval needed internally to sign an MVS agreement; most important features offered by MVS; areas of concern/reservation about MVS; importance of specific concerns when thinking about entering into an MVS agreement; categories of instruments most interested in covering with MVS; likelihood will contract out instrument service and support coverage to an MVS provider over the next 3 years; and any unmet needs in instrument support that respondents would like to see addressed by service providers.

Respondents came from 12 Large Pharma; 8 University; 6 Medium-Small Pharma; 5 Research Institute; 5 Medical School/Hospital/Clinic; 4 Biotech Company – Established; 4 Contract Research Organization; 3 Biotech Company – Startup; 3 Diagnostics Company; 2 Agrochemical/Agri-Biotech Company ; 2 Government Laboratory; 2 Academic Screening Center; 2 Other and 1 Not-For-Profit Research Center.

Most survey respondents had a senior job role or position which was in descending order: 15 principal investigators; 12 lab managers; 9 senior scientists/researchers; 7 research scientists/associates; 6 section/group leaders; 6 directors; 5 principal investigators; 4 others; 3 vice presidents; 3 instrument support staff; 2 professors/assistant professors; 1 department head; and 1 graduate student/PhD student.

Few highlights of this survey report include:

  •     The main application areas of respondent’s lab instruments were basic/academic research or pharmaceutical/drug discovery research.
  •     The level of use of instruments by most respondents was occasional use.
  •     The median reasonable hourly rate for an instrument service visit was $150-$200/hour.
  •     The median maximum hourly rate for an instrument service visit was $200-$250/hour.
  •     The claimable expense thought most reasonable on top of an hourly rate was an air fare.
  •     Most respondents thought it was a divisional/departmental responsibility for setting aside an instrument support budget.
  •     Most respondents would fund an instrument support budget from a general site fund.
  •     The approach respondents most currently use to maintain or service lab instruments were instrument manufacturer service contracts.
  •     The majority of respondents have purchased an extended warranty or service contract from an instrument manufacturer and thought it was worth the price paid.
  •     The median % of the original instrument value respondents would expect to pay annually for instrument service and support was 5%.
  •     The primary philosophy towards PM was to inspect regularly & repair as needed.
  •     The alternative philosophy towards PM was to follow OEM recommendations.

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