Lab Workshop Solutions to Staffing, Cost-Cutting, Revenue Problems

It’s a first-ever opportunity for the lab industry: a hands-on lab workshop to share proven best practices

This is an excerpt of a 1,591-word article in the August 8, 2022 issue of  THE DARK REPORT. The full article is available to subscribers.

CEO SUMMARY: Responding to requests from numerous lab managers, The Dark Report is organizing a one-and-a-half-day lab workshop program that will come to your city. Workshop leaders are from labs successful at cutting costs, at staff hiring/retention, and at increasing their lab’s revenue. The learning will take place in facilitated sessions to encourage networking and sharing of best practices and clever ideas. Participating lab managers with come away with everything needed to implement solutions in their own labs.

THIS FALL, INNOVATIVE CLINICAL LABORATORY LEADERS will assemble in Chicago and Miami specifically to share what’s working in cutting lab costs, recruiting more lab staff, and producing more revenue at their labs. All three problems are creating high stress for lab managers across the nation today.

These three elements of lab operations—cost-cutting, staffing, and producing more revenue—are interlinked. For example, when a lab cuts costs the wrong way, the resulting stress in the lab can cause valuable medical technologists to quit and take the same job at another lab across town. This is one reason why there is a close relationship in how a lab operates and its success in retaining its best employees.

This workshop series is titled Lab Management Essentials to Effectively Cut Costs, Improve Staff Hiring and Retention, and Generate More New Revenue. The first event happens on Oct. 20-21 in Chicago. The second happens Nov. 10-11 in Miami. 

“Last April, more than 900 lab professionals attended our Executive War College in New Orleans,” stated Robert L. Michel, Founder and Director of the conference. “Three topics dominated the interest of attendees during the sessions. 

“First is the sustained pressure on labs to cut costs,” he said. “Many hospital labs are being asked by administration to reduce spending, even as inflation increases the price of analyzers, tests, and other lab products.

“Second is the near-impossible task of hiring and retaining lab staff across all types of positions and skills,” continued Michel. “In every region of the country, labs report that they operate with unfilled positions representing as much as 20% of authorized staff levels. 

“How different would things be in your lab if—within months—your sales team added $10K to $50K in monthly revenue from new physician clients?”

– Robert Michel, Editor-in-Chief, The Dark Report

“The third issue is the pressing need to increase revenue,” Michel added. “More revenue can ease the pressure to cut expenses—particularly if drastic cost cuts erode customer service levels in ways that cause referring physicians to switch to a new lab provider. More revenue also makes it possible to fund the salary increases necessary in both staff recruitment and staff retention.”

Never Offered Before Now

Building on the suggestions and requests from attendees at this spring’s Executive War College, The Dark Report team has organized a lab workshop never before available to clinical laboratory managers: a one-and-a-half day workshop with case studies, facilitated networking, and sharing of best practices by invited speakers and practitioners. 

Smart Cost Cutting: The morning of the first day is devoted to proven ways to cut costs. Innovative labs will provide case studies of effective cost cutting and workflow redesign, followed by facilitated discussions and a sharing of best practices. 

Effective Staffing: The afternoon of the first day deals with the recruiting, hiring, and retention of lab staff. Case studies will provide approaches that are working in today’s competitive lab recruiting market, again followed by facilitated discussions of what’s working among the participants. 

Generating More Revenue

Increasing Revenue: The morning of the second day tackles the important goal of generating more revenue. These are proven ways that increase your lab’s net profits and provide additional cash to help close budget shortfalls. 

Lab case studies and the facilitated discussions ensure that all participants acquire the knowledge, insights, and confidence they need to return to their labs and produce new streams of profitable revenue. 

“It is important to understand that we are bringing to Chicago and Miami the same proven learning approach that has made our annual Executive War College the nation’s largest conference on the business and management of labs and pathology groups,” Michel explained. “By design, labs within driving distance of these first two strategic roundtables can send teams of their most effective lab leaders to use these local workshops as the opportunity to learn what’s working and what’s not in cost reduction, lab staffing, and building lab revenue. 

“This unique learning opportunity will deliver high value to the labs who send their most talented managers,” he noted. “The benefit to your lab is obvious when they return from this information-packed lab workshop program with proven methods to cut costs that quickly produce ongoing savings of $20K, $40K, or more per month.

Benefits of More Revenue

“Similarly, how valuable will it be to you and your lab team when those same managers apply the lessons on staff recruiting, hiring, and retention and are able to swiftly close your FTE staffing gap by five, 10, 20 individuals or more?” Michel asked. “It’s the same with new revenue. How different would things be in your lab if—within months—your sales team added $10K to $50K in monthly revenue from new physician clients? These are three reasons why this workshop is a low-cost, high-return opportunity.”

The lab workshop will be limited to 50 participants. Each of the three learning modules will start with two short, concise lab cases studies, presented by the lab executives responsible for implementation in their respective labs. Their experience, advice, and techniques will be applicable in labs large and small, whether independent labs or hospital labs. 

Following the two case studies, participants will break up into groups of 10-12 individuals. Skilled strategic facilitators will lead the discussion that follows. All attendees will have the opportunity to share what’s working in their labs and what’s not. The case study presenters will be proctors during these discussions. 

Idea Exchange

This is where the collective savvy of the participants guarantees a rich exchange of valuable ideas. The essential resources needed to enable the lab to reach its goals will be discussed. These discussions will generate a prioritized list of the actions that are most achievable and which will produce the biggest results in the shortest time. 

Each module will end with the individual discussion groups reassembling together. As a single group, they will share, compare, and identify the best strategies, and tactics. All of this information will be captured by the strategic facilitators. Every participant will get a digital file with the key discussion points and recommended action items. 

The sidebar below, “Experts with Proven Ways to Swiftly Achieve Lab Cost-Cutting, Staffing, and New Revenue,” provides information about the case study presenters and the range of topics that will be discussed in each of the three modules presented during the 1½-day lab workshop strategic roundtables.

Achieving Fast Results

It is recommended that labs plan to send four or more of their most productive managers. Having their key contributors learn together will allow them to return to the lab and speedily launch programs designed to reduce costs, and to fill more open positions at the lab. 

This is a unique opportunity for lab managers with initiative to interact with peers while learning powerful approaches to cutting costs and boosting revenue for their labs. Information and more details are available at this link:

How will new ideas for cost-cutting, staffing, and revenue enhancements impact your lab? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.