After returning from the 2019 Lab Design Conference, our team discussed the increased use of robotics in labs and ways to improve existing facilities. It inspired us to remind lab managers everywhere of a few issues that are worthy of consideration.
As laboratory practices and technology evolve, is your facility keeping up? Here are a few things you can do to enhance your space.
5 ways to improve your laboratory space:
Too much bench space? With new equipment and technologies, lab managers are finding themselves with the wrong mix of bench and floor space. Utilizing flexible casework systems and ceiling panels with utility connections can accommodate needs as they fluctuate over time.
Are you looking to the future? Being aware of industry trends helps you maintain leadership in your sector, make strategic decisions, attract and retain new employees, and maximize the utilization of current technologies.
How flexible are your utilities? Don't let services be the factor that keeps you from achieving optimal workflow. Solutions like an improved layout with flexibility in mind and putting utility access points on a grid in the ceiling both allow changes in the laboratory arrangement without affecting the infrastructure.
Is your sample retains area congested? Establish a process to regularly clear out your work areas to help with efficiency and safety in the workspace. Utilize separate storage rooms, readily adjacent temporary storage racks, and in some cases use high-density mobile shelving to manage materials.
Does your lab meet your current needs? Times change, jobs change, people change, instruments change, and practices change; your facility should accommodate your current needs. If you see opportunities for improvement generate an action plan and work towards achieving those goals with your team, management, and facility consultants.
Crump Wilson Architects works hard to stay abreast of current and future design trends. We harness that to develop results incorporating all aspects of safety, innovation, and efficiency in our designs.
Do you see any trends in your specific industry?