The Scientist Purchasing Cycle – Time Lost from Science

In your lab, who is responsible for negotiating prices, placing orders, following up on them, and tracking receipts for proper accounting?

If you answer “the scientists”, your lab is in a lot of trouble. For people who are not trained to manage money, negotiate, and understand accounting…does this make sense? No. And your lab is losing time (and boatloads of money) over it.

Welcome to the future! Where the purchasing role of the lab, and most lab manager duties, are available for outsourcing, allowing scientists to spend more time on science–what they are trained to do.

happy scientist at happilabs virtual lab manager purchasing


Lab Save of the Week: Gel spatula, $8.55 or $74.95?

Recently, one of our Virtual Lab Managers received a request for a spatula to open gel cassettes and transfer gels from one location to another. The customer found this product through Invitrogen for $45 plus $29.95 for shipping.

putty knifeBefore we place orders, we always check prices and products at other sites. We were able to track down a similar product–a putty knife–on Amazon for $8.55 with free shipping, a $66.40 save for customer. Yay!

Invitrogen- Gel Knife, Catalog #EI9010, $45.00 (+$29.95 shipping)
Amazon- Harris Premier chisel tool, $8.55 (free shipping)

What would you do with $66.40?

By paying attention to your lab spending, you can avoid overpaying for products.


How to save $140 on an antibody

Lab Save of the Week:

HappiLabs pcr tube solutionsA customer requested Bioworld Bovine Calpain-2 Catalytic, quoted at $491.00 from Fisher. Our Virtual Lab Managers knew we could get a better price than that, so we shopped around. We found that ordering directly from Bioworld resulted in major savings, with a quote for $351.18 (savings of $139.82). Think about what else you could buy with that money!

Fisher: Catalog #50-253-649, $491.00
Bioworld: Catalog #22060550-1, $351.18

Pay attention to where your money goes and you can save $140 on a single order.

Lab Shopping for Silica Gel and saving $100’s

Recently, one of our Virtual Lab Managers was shopping for Silica Gel for chromatography based a customer request (because they didn’t want to waste 15 minutes of work time googling this themselves).

The requests from the customer were for Sigma high-purity grade 200-500 micron particle size, 35-70 mesh at 40 and 60 Angstroms. Sigma quoted $1400/10 kg and $1110/10 kg for the respective sizes.

Purchasing and Customer Service ScientistWe found Silicycle with list prices of $1008/10 kg for the 40 Angstrom size and $540/10 kg for the 60 Angstrom size. This amounts to savings of $392 ($39.20/kg) and $570 ($57.00/kg) for the respective sizes.

Savings like these could make a huge difference for a start-up company. If you shop around, you could save hundreds of dollars for just one order. Think about what a HappiLabs Virtual Lab Manager could do for you and your funding!

Product Info:

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.