There are four steps required to become a laboratory consultant: post-secondary training, related work experience, setting up the correct business structure, and finding business. A laboratory consultant is someone who has extensive experience in the set-up and management of laboratories, and can provide advice on the ideal layout, staffing, and equipment required. There are a wide range of types of laboratories, and most consultants specialize in a specific area or industry.
People who are interested in improving the industry standards, enjoy working with technology, and are detail-oriented find this type of work satisfying. In a consulting role, it is important to provide advice and guidance in a way that can be easily accepted and implemented. A great deal of business for a consultant is based on referrals, so it is critical to build a good reputation.
The first requirement to become a laboratory consultant is to complete a post-secondary education program. While there is no specific training program in laboratory consultant, many people in this field have degrees in the physical sciences, health sciences, or related fields. It is important to be able to immediately understand the client's intended use of the laboratory and the most common issues they face.
Related work experience is essential to become a laboratory consultant. In addition to academic qualifications, candidates must have at least 10 years' experience working in laboratories. The greater the number of laboratories the better, as this will increase understanding of the challenges and possible solutions.
In order to become a laboratory consultant, it is very important to set up the correct business structure. Registering your business with the local government is critical. This step ensures that you can offer your professional services to companies, invoicing them for services and depositing the payments into a business bank account. This process is also important from a taxation perspective, as a registered business has a different set of tax rules and deductions.
Consultants secure opportunities to provide their services through a range of methods. Some consultants sign contracts with specialized firms, who manage the business aspect of consulting, such as looking for clients, billing, and marketing. The services firm takes a portion of the consultants earning as a fee. Other people manage this aspect of the business themselves, building business relationships and partnerships with key players directly. Either approach can be successful, you simply need to select the one that will work best for you.