Research Lab Manager


Position summary

This position will primarily be responsible for providing strategic, operational and space management for the Department’s research laboratories and teaching facilities. This includes responsibilities for short and long-term planning; management of shared research facilities and shared laboratory spaces; and environmental and occupational health and safety compliance.

Primary duties and responsibilities

Support for research:

  • Direct, supervise and contribute to the effective and efficient management of the Department’s Research Support Facilities including glass washing and other services.
  • Provide advice to the Chair and liaise with the Department Infrastructure Advisory Committee on the management of current equipment assets, purchase of new equipment and disposal of old equipment, as well as the development and implementation of strategic plans regarding future research facilities supporting the Department’s research directions.
  • Establish processes and procedures in conjunction with the WUSM Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety Manager, designed to ensure compliance with requirements of EHS legislation and relates EHA responsibilities and procedures developed by the University and the Department. Contribute to the effective monitoring of these systems.
  • Manage the Department’s communal equipment and assets, including budgeting, strategic procurement, installation, training, ongoing maintenance and audits.
  • Coordinate and maintain asset management within the Workday system for all Department equipment. Collaborate with labs to complete physical asset tagging for such equipment.
  • Assist in submitting work order related tickets via the Service Now system.
  • Plan, manage, and assist laboratories to liaise closely with the Operations and Facilities Management Department as the Department research activities move into the new Neuroscience Research Building (expected move mid-2023) to minimize research downtime for all laboratories. Ensure research continuity during the move.
  • Contribute to the planning and management of building projects for the Department including the modification of laboratory space and services and the installation of large- and small-scale laboratory instrumentation.
  • Work closely with the laboratories within the Department, and following the move into the Neuroscience Research Building, between laboratories in different Departments, to ensure the smooth running of laboratories, equipment and space management.
  • Ensure research is supported in laboratories within the Department that are not moving to the Neuroscience Research Building.
  • Conduct research to identify suitable equipment options and pricing and provide specialist advice on compatibility, infrastructure and support requirements for scientific equipment purchases.
  • Manage infrastructure and equipment requirements for the establishment and onboarding of new research groups and ongoing equipment needs of established groups.
  • Become familiar with the equipment and space needs of new investigators to the Department to ensure they can be productive as soon as possible. Help these investigators negotiate pricing for new equipment and develop relationships with companies that support the research activities within the Department.
  • During the recruitment of investigators with established laboratories, assist with all aspects of moving the laboratory and establishing their new lab at Washington University. Act as the contact point for onboarding new faculty and their laboratory members with regards to establishing their research program.
  • Work collaboratively will all members of the Department Business Office to help support the research operations of the Department.
  • Work cooperatively with the Operations and Facilities Management Division and the Department of Comparative Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine to ensure appropriate service delivery.

Strategic planning and operational support management:

  • Oversee all scientific operational functions within the Department and support the Department Chair by ensuring organizational and financial efficiencies within these functions.
  • Provide input into the strategic and operational planning and review processes of the Department.
  • Develop and contribute to five-year budget and succession plans for the Department’s shared research facilities and equipment.
  • In conjunction with Laboratory and Re-charge Facility Managers and researchers, identify future infrastructure demands and establish effective solutions, ensuring effective operations and delivery of high quality service to our research mission.
  • Identify, develop and implement initiatives to promote the continuing development of the Department’s shared research equipment and establish relationships across Departments that will ensure the most efficient processes and facilities exist for research in the Neuroscience Research Building.
  • Partner with investigators to constructively contribute to a culture of continuous improvement in operations, services and facilities.
  • Represent and advocate for the Department where required in key forums and committees.

Resource and staff management:

  • Provide leadership in developing a collegial environment within the Department and across neuroscience laboratories at WUSM particularly for non-academic research laboratory staff to enable a culture that will deliver a highly collaborative environment.
  • Manage the technical or support staff required to oversee the Department’s shared research facilities. Build a culture of shared research facilities to maximize resources within the Department and between the Department of Neuroscience and other Departments at Washington University.
  • Lead, contribute to, and promote a high standard of staff performance, skills development and productivity across all Department laboratories.
  • Manage appropriate allocation of laboratory space to ensure research needs and safety requirements are met. Provide advice to the Department Chair and OFMD to manage forward planning strategies for future space requirements.
  • Manage keys and card-access for the Department, including issuing new keys and maintaining an inventory. 
  • Manage space-reporting assignments within the Archibus system, including completing annual reporting. 

Ensure departmental compliance:

  • Environmental health and safety, radiation, drugs, shipping, hazardous waste, incident management, and ethical conduct of research.

Working conditions

This position works in a laboratory environment with potential exposure to biological and chemical hazards. The individual must be physically able to wear protective equipment and to provide standard care to research animals.

Preferred qualifications

  • Postgraduate qualifications in neuroscience and substantial (at least 10 years) experience managing a scientific research facility; extensive (at least 10 years) experience in safety management in the context of a research laboratory environment; or an equivalent combination of relevant experience and/or education/training.
  • First Aid Certificate.
  • Proven ability to efficiently and effectively manage a scientific research facility and laboratories.
  • Broad scientific and technical knowledge with some areas of specialist knowledge in neuroscience.
  • Exceptional leadership skills, with a demonstrated ability to supervise, lead and motivate technical and operational staff working in a team environment.
  • Sophisticated understanding of compliance requirements and their application in the research environment.
  • Ability to operate independently within established framework and guidelines; prioritize competing demands and meet deadlines; and maintain a strong orientation to the provision of quality client service.
  • Capacity for forward planning and prioritization of tasks.
  • Knowledge of University policies and procedures as they relate to environmental health and safety, genetically modified organisms, building and laboratory operations and maintenance.

Required qualifications

Master’s degree with five years of experience in research lab operations or equivalent combination of education and experience equaling 12 years.



Salary Range

$61,000.00 – $110,600.00 / Annually

The salary range reflects base salaries paid for positions in a given job grade across the University. Individual rates within the range will be determined by factors including one’s qualifications and performance, equity with others in the department, market rates for positions within the same grade and department budget.

Pre-employment screening

All external candidates receiving an offer for employment will be required to submit to pre-employment screening for this position. The screenings will include criminal background check and, as applicable for the position, other background checks, drug screen, an employment and education or licensure/certification verification, physical examination, certain vaccinations and/or governmental registry checks. All offers are contingent upon successful completion of required screening.

Benefits statement

Washington University in St. Louis is committed to providing a comprehensive and competitive benefits package to our employees. Benefits eligibility is subject to employment status, full-time equivalent (FTE) workload, and weekly standard hours. Please visit our website at to view a summary of benefits.

EEO/AA statement

Washington University in St. Louis is committed to the principles and practices of equal employment opportunity and especially encourages applications by those from underrepresented groups. It is the University’s policy to provide equal opportunity and access to persons in all job titles without regard to race, ethnicity, color, national origin, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, protected veteran status, or genetic information.

Diversity statement

Washington University is dedicated to building a diverse community of individuals who are committed to contributing to an inclusive environment – fostering respect for all and welcoming individuals from diverse backgrounds, experiences and perspectives. Individuals with a commitment to these values are encouraged to apply.

Job ID JR68381