We’re hiring a Virtual Lab Manager

Virtual Lab Manager at a growing life science company

If you have experience with lab management, purchasing, or customer service in the sciences, apply!

ABOUT HAPPILABS

HappiLabs is a small business in Chicago, still in the early stage but past the startup stage, that provides a service to scientists called the Virtual Lab Manager. We are similar to an outsourced purchasing department (some might say a Personal Shopper) for biotech companies and scientific research labs, and support them in many other ways besides buying things.

We have a mission: to improve the happiness of scientists and the quality of their research.

By helping scientists do their job, we are helping all the people on the planet who benefit from inventions, creations, and knowledge that scientists create.

Purchasing and Customer Service ScientistYou will co-manage a minimum of two labs. We are “virtual” so your job consists of sitting in an office and communicating with scientists, in other parts of the world, about what they need to run their experiments.

You will be trained to be one of the best lab managers in the world.

EXPERIENCE

A strong candidate will have one of these backgrounds:

  • Lab manager or postdoc (or superb grad student) who has managed people, experiments, and budgets
  • Purchasing agent
  • Sales rep in the life science industry (but this is NOT a sales job)

RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Communicate with engineers & scientists to understand their needs and experiments
  • Communicate with suppliers (sales reps, technical help & customer service) to obtain pricing and technical info, place orders, retrieve order updates, and solve logistics and supply chain problems
  • Keep accounting records organized
  • Report progress and solve problems at team meetings

TIMEFRAME

Looking to start now, preferably in Chicago.

COMPENSATION

  • Full-time
  • $50-70k, depending on experience
  • Medical and Dental health benefits
  • A t-shirt, free coffee and snacks at the office

SKILLS AND TRAITS YOU SHOULD HAVE

We want a long-term commitment, someone who will help a small company grow into a large one.

  • Tech savvy (very good with a computer, its keyboard and multiple monitors)
  • Proactive mentality – help without being asked to help, and an ability to predict problems
  • Knowledge of hardware or mechanical engineering, and/or chemistry, and/or molecular biology
  • A passion for science and desire to make a difference in the world.
  • Confident presence on the phone. We frequently call suppliers

===== APPLY NOW! ======

CLICK this link –> HAPPILABS JOB APPLICATION (VIA A GOOGLE FORM)

It will not hurt to connect with Tom on LinkedIn.

Achieving Good Goals in 2018

HappiLabs’ core goal is to improve the happiness of scientists and the quality of their research.

How do we know if we’re achieving that goal with the scientists we work with?

Sometimes we get direct feedback from scientists as in this recent example:

“Happy Holidays HappiLabs! Thanks for all the orders you have placed for us and all the help! You guys are amazing.”

This is good feedback and suggests we’re doing well, but this is a result of focusing on actions we can take to ensure scientists are happy. For instance, we actively work to respond quickly to emails.

We work to have S.M.A.R.T. goals like this:

Specific – Respond quickly to messages and requests.

Measurable – How fast do we respond?

Achievable – The Virtual Lab Manager team can work to cut response times.

Relevant – The better we are at timely responses, the happier we make scientists.

Timed – We will work to achieve response times scientists are happy with and assess our efforts in June.

Layered on S.M.A.R.T. goals is setting good goals. Re-assessing goals is also allowed.

As scientists, HappiLabs likes data. Data from S.M.A.R.T. goals turns into real world difference-making, including making scientists happy.

As you plan for 2018 and beyond, are your goals good and S.M.A.R.T.?

HappiLabs on Illinois Business This Week

CEO and Founder of HappiLabs, Tom Ruginis, was interviewed by Illinois Business This Week, a Chicago-based news show. Watch to learn about the history, current state, and future of HappiLabs.

He talks about HappiLabs’ influence on tax dollar spending, how to start a biotech company, and the rooftop at TechNexus.

People who should watch this: politicians on budget oversight committees, purchasing departments, and executives for biotech companies.

A List of Woman-Run Scientific Suppliers

We analyzed 70 common distributors and manufacturers of scientific supplies, services, and equipment. There are only 6 that are run by women. If this is important for you as you shop for lab supplies, support the companies below.

Elizabeth-Iorns-scientific-supplierScience Exchange – Elizabeth Iorns, PhD is the CEO and co-Founder of this hot startup that supplies scientists with easier access to experiments.

Dot Scientific – Dorothy Boone is the Founder and President of this distributor of general lab supplies and equipment.

Chemglass Life Science – Regina Surdam is CEO of this manufacturer of scientific and chemistry products, and supplier of chromatography vials and closures.

Gilson – Atika El Sayed, PhD is the CEO of this manufacturer and supplier of a wide range of manual and automated liquid handling solutions.

Macherey-Nagel – Carolin Wagner is the CEO of this supplier specializing in filtration, chromatography, Rapid Testing, bioanalysis, and medical diagnostics.

Recently discovered: Cori J. Smith owns BioLink Scientific, a distributor of general laboratory suplies.

To see our full analysis, visit: An Analysis of Woman-owned Scientific Suppliers

An Analysis of Women-owned Scientific Suppliers

Summary

When a lab hires HappiLabs to be their virtual lab manager and do their lab shopping, we want to make sure we buy from suppliers who fit the values of the lab. Recently, one of our customers asked, “Who are the female owned suppliers? We’d like to buy from them.” Therefore, we hired Dr. Vidhya Sivakumaran (above photo), a cardiovascular–focused postdoc from Loyola University, to do research on the topic. This is an informal study assessing the population of women-owned suppliers of scientific supplies, services, equipment, and reagents. 

happilabs shops for women-owned scientific suppliers
The 70 companies that were surveyed for this analysis

Methods

  1. We selected 70 suppliers with whom HappiLabs has purchased from over the past 6 months
  2. Scanned their website to identify the sex of ownership
  3. If it wasn’t clear, we confirmed website findings with a phone call or email

Note: If we missed any women-owned business beyond the 70, please notify us: hello at happilabs.org

Discussion

It is well know that most industries are male-dominated. However, this is slowly changing and with this many labs are looking to buy and work with women-run scientific suppliers when it comes to purchasing pipette tips, chemicals, antibodies, centrifuges, etc. It was our hypothesis that there are few women-run businesses. Based on our research, this is true. However, science is doing better than the Fortune 500.

Lab shopping for female owned science businesses
92.9% male vs 7.1% female owned scientific suppliers

From the sample we looked at, 5 out of 70 or 7.1% of science suppliers are owned and/or run by women: DotScientific, Chemglass Life Science, Gilson, Macherey-Nagel, and Science Exchange. This is slightly higher than the 4.8% of fortune 500 companies run by females (Catalyst.org). Yay science!

happy labs shopping for women-owned scientific suppliers

We did find out through the course of our study that women-owned businesses out-survive male-owned businesses in several industries and areas, such as education and restaurant establishments (Kalnins et al, Journal of Business Venturing, 2014).

We also observed that only 16.9% of corporate board seats were held by women in 2013, with little progress in narrowing the gender gap (Huffington Post). Michelle Rowley, a tech entrepreneur and founder of Code Scouts (a non-science business), knows this feeling all too well. She was quoted in Entrepreneur magazine as saying, “that is a weird dynamic – being the only woman in the room – and they are all staring at you because they have to. I thought, I wonder how the dynamics would change if we could get more women involved.”

How does HappiLabs want to help? HappiLabs is interested in supporting women-run companies by making it easier for scientists to purchase supplies and services from them. We also plan to reach out and possibly work with several groups that promote women in science, such as AWIS Chicago, the Field Museum Women in Science, Women in Bio, and the Chicago Collaboration for Women in STEM.

Please share this post with other scientists who might be interested in knowing about women-owned scientific suppliers. And sign up to receive our monthly newsletter with updates about tips and suggestions for being a conscious shopper (and user) of scientific supplies: