Dealing with multiple suppliers can be very tricky when it comes to acquiring equipment for your laboratory. Given the needs and specifications involved, as well as the budgets that go with it, makes transacting with more than one vendor a very complex situation.
So the idea is to choose just one supplier that can provide you the lab furniture and systems that you need at budgets you can work with.
It goes without saying that choosing a supplier with an established name and reputation should be a priority. The quality of your laboratory apparatus will depend on the craftsmanship of the manufacturer, as well as the kind of materials that they use.
Another main consideration is the expertise of the manufacturer when it comes to a particular type of lab furniture or science equipment solutions. You need to find a supplier that has expertise in creating apparatus and products for your type of lab.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Supplier
Say you are planning to build a new lab facility that has several laboratories and you will need lots of customized furniture and products with high standards.
Whether it be for your furniture fume hoods, cabinets, storage, or various stainless steel solutions, dealing with the right supplier can make or break this project.
Below are the factors you need to consider:
Working with Fewer Vendors is More Practical
Careful planning design and vendor selection are necessary in order to prevent unwanted delays and other problems that may arise. This is especially true if you’re planning to build more than one laboratory and different kinds.
Each lab will have its own specific requirements like storage, laboratory fume hoods, cabinets, and stainless steel products. You can assign a different supplier for each, but that can turn out to be complicated. It’s best to choose just one, if possible, to provide all the apparatus needed for all the laboratories.
This means you have to find a supplier or manufacturer that has a history of working in a similar situation and has the design and manufacturing capability in your area.
If you already have a long-standing working relationship with the supplier, so much better. It’s just simpler to have just one supplier responsible for work on several laboratories at the same time.
The communication process is more streamlined, which eliminates or lessens errors that may come up.
Get a Supplier With Expertise in Custom Equipment
It’s easier to get a supplier if you only need stock stainless steel furniture and apparatus, but it’s a different story when it comes to customized ones.
Unique features that you may need to include are chemically-resistant science lab benches, cabinets, fume hoods, and safety showers. Therefore, you’ll need a supplier that can work with your specifications.
For instance, you may need to design stainless steel laboratory furniture with working surfaces that have no physical joints and easier to sterilize. This will require building a long casework assembly and you may need to modify a part of the lab to accommodate this.
You may even need them to be mobile. This requires the expertise of a supplier who makes customized apparatus.
Choosing between standard and customized apparatus is a weighty decision. Each has its pros and cons. When it comes to costs, it’s definitely economical to go for standard lab furniture.
Off-the-shelf safety cabinets, tables, chairs, and fume hoods are produced in mass quantities and are definitely cheaper. If you’re lucky, you will have a lab that will do just fine with a stock apparatus.
But if you discover that standard furniture cannot support the kind of work that you do regularly in the lab, buying custom-design furniture might be the better solution. You will avoid the hidden costs of repair and replacement in the long term.
Having customized furniture means having the perfect fit of form and function in your laboratory, which then leads to better workflow and productivity. Of course, this will certainly cost you. A high standard does indeed come with a price.
This will definitely have a huge say on who you can afford to deal with when it comes to products and services. Choosing your supplier should not be based on price alone.
If you need to shell out more for a reputable supplier, then consider it money well spent. You don’t want to compromise the efficiency and safety of your lab by signing up a supplier of sub-par furniture and apparatus.
Also, consider the fact that getting furniture of lower quality means there’s a need for repairs more frequently, which can lead to higher expenses for you compared to getting excellent furniture that will require lesser repairs or replacement.
Overall Product Quality
Whether you choose to go for stock or custom-design furniture, whether old or new, high quality will always become a top factor.
You don’t want to see thousands or even millions of dollars go down the drain because your furniture like storage, cabinet, fume hood or tables couldn’t keep up with your workflow.
The benefits of getting excellent casework can’t be stressed enough. It can handle the daily and constant use of your lab technicians and stand the test of time.
Level of Customer Service
The transaction doesn’t stop when all the laboratory furniture ordered is delivered and installed. Some laboratory apparatuses like fume hoods or microscopic tables may require repairs or after service. This is why it’s essential to get a supplier that can be easily reached for help.
Unfortunately, there are suppliers that can become lax with their services once the sale or installation has been done. Not having a direct contact us page for help and service is usually a bad sign.
Do research on customer reviews for your potential suppliers to get genuine feedback on their apparatus and service quality.
Lead Time for Creating and Delivering Equipment
Take note that lab designers work on deadlines, something you should remember when choosing furniture suppliers. Your lab people have projects to finish and they will need their apparatus as soon as possible.
If you’re going to order customized furniture or mobile ones like lab tables, cabinets, storage, chair, or fume hood, understand that naturally, this will take time to finish. The shipment period is also a crucial factor because it can affect the deadlines of the people in your lab.
This is why clearing the lead time is essential. You want to give your supplier enough time to work on excellent casework and at the same time, you don’t also want to hamper the work of your technicians.
Make sure that you get the perfect furniture for your laboratory, standard or custom-made. Trust only a lab supply company that has a wide array of laboratory furniture and furnishings for most types of scientific environments.
For all your scientific lab systems and apparatus needs, contact us at the LabTech Supply Company today.