Tips for Setting up a Successful Research Lab
Looking to start your own research lab? This blog will help guide you in the right direction. It’s an exciting journey, but for it to be successful, it requires a lot of meticulous work and preparation.
How to start a research lab
Regardless of what industry you aim for, starting a research lab involves many steps to keep in mind to ensure maximum success. Outside of the usual administrative steps, it’s important to carefully consider the budget aspect of your project. It’s easy to get financially overwhelmed if you don’t plan ahead.
It goes without saying, but setting up a research lab is not free. The first thing you should do is define a budget for your future laboratory. Not all costs will be the same, since the industry you aim for plays a significant part in the money you will spend, but some costs are universal. Here are a few things to plan for:
- Equipment: This will be the biggest cost you will have to deal with when setting up your lab. You can minimize this cost by registering to a local shared facility which can give you access to all equipment on a on-need basis, reducing the need for capital
- Supplies: The supplies you and your team will need is also a cost you need to evaluate.
- Furniture: You might be able to find affordable furniture, but since you might need to buy more than one piece of furniture, those prices will add up in the long run.
- Staff salaries: You need to estimate the salaries of your staff, as their salaries will take a large amount of your budget.
Luckily, you don’t have to save every single penny to make your dream a reality. There are many ways to get funding to start your lab. Here are a couple of things you can look for:
- Government or bank loans for businesses
- Government grants. If you are in the US, the NIH typically offers some great non-dilutive funding for startups.
- Tax credits
- Wage subsidies
Be sure to look into funding for technological softwares like ours. There are many government programs that offer funding for businesses who want to implement technological softwares.
Tips for setting up a successful research lab
Not all labs are the same. Therefore, they do not have the same needs. However, there are universal principles to apply.
Everything you do for your (future) lab is an investment. Always invest in quality. For example, invest in quality equipment and softwares. A good investment is shopping for an ELN. ELN, which is short for Electronic Lab Notebook, replaces traditional paper notebooks to make note keeping easier. They also ensure reproducibility and facilitate work and communication between the members of your team. Having good habits early on in your research lab makes work within your lab easier, productive and more efficient. If you want an example of a good ELN, you can explore ours and get an idea.
We hope this short blog was helpful in guiding you towards the creation of your lab. Bookmark this blog if you need and be sure to return to it as often as you need during your journey