Part-time lab directors are a cost-effective option for high-complexity CLIA laboratories. Part-time lab directors can be hired on an as-needed basis to provide the required oversight for the laboratory. This arrangement can significantly reduce overhead costs for the laboratory. Part-time lab directors are appropriate for laboratories with the following demographics:
* Low patient volume
* Low staff turnover
* Limited testing menu
* Fewer than five full-time employees
Part time Lab Directors generally only get paid between 10–30% of their full time counterparts, creating significant savings for the lab.
Part-time lab directors can effectively delegate certain tasks to staff. By doing so, the part-time lab director can focus on the big picture while the full-time staff executes the day-to-day operations. This allows for a more efficient use of the director’s time, as they can typically visit the laboratory quarterly unless the state in which the lab is located stipulates more frequent on-site visits. In general, a part-time lab director will spend somewhere between two-to-eight hours per month on site. Ultimately, this arrangement can be beneficial for all parties involved as it allows the laboratory to run more smoothly and efficiently.
Part-time lab directors are often brought on board to provide oversight for a limited number of hours per week or quarter. As a result, they are typically not involved in day-to-day operations, and may not have the opportunity to participate in method development or validation studies. Instead, these activities are typically completed by a technical supervisor or another experienced staff member. In some cases, a consulting agency may be employed to assist with these studies. However, the part-time lab director should still be kept informed of these activities and be available to provide guidance as needed. By working closely with the rest of the team, the part-time lab director can ensure that the laboratory is running smoothly and efficiently.
The criteria for Directors may vary by state, but in general, they must have a certain amount of experience working in the field and managing staff. They also must complete Continuing Education credits every few years to maintain their credential. Some States also require that directors be board-certified in one of the health science disciplines. If you are interested in becoming a laboratory director, you should check with your state’s requirements. Once you have met the qualifications, you can apply for a position at a hospital, clinic, or private laboratory. It’s not uncommon for full-time lab directors planning on retiring soon to step into this part-time role as a way to stay connected to an industry they love.
The part-time lab director role also lends itself to people who enjoy more flexible schedules to do things like travel, maintain a separate part-time business, or to become a part-time lab director at multiple labs before finding a full-time position.
Consider whether a part-time lab director is the right move for your facility. Interested in walking through that thought process? Feel free to contact us!