[Cytometry] SRL staffing problems - need community feedback

Cris Bare flowmail at verizon.net
Tue Feb 25 17:33:50 EST 2014


I agree in general with the 1 FTE per sorter rule of thumb, but having also
run a COPAS and ImageStream. These are both instruments that benefit from
babysitting. While they don't need a full FTE all the time, they do need
someone with deep knowledge and excellent troubleshooting skills.

Another factor to consider in the case of the ISX is the time and
complexity of the data analysis. When I teach newer flow users, I often
joke that it takes minutes to acquire the data and days to analyze it. The
Imagestream ups that by an order of magnitude due to the huge number of
parameters and processor intense nature of the data.CyTOF too.

But even if you have users self service, to insure proper maintenance and
troubleshooting you NEED a full time person at each site. That's a 4 FTE
for Vinko minimum.

-cbb


On Mon, Feb 24, 2014 at 7:04 AM, Rachael Walker <
Rachael.Walker at babraham.ac.uk> wrote:

> Dear Vinko,
>
> A paper was published last year in Cytometry Part A giving algorithms and
> metrics for evaluating a cell sorting service, this might be very useful
> for you.
>
> Petrunkina, A : 'Algorithm and metrics for a Standardized Evaluation of
> Cell Sorting Service Delivery'.  Cytometry  Part A: Vol 83A, 7, 602-607
> 2013.
>
> I can email you a PDF copy if you can't get hold of one.
>
> Best Wishes
> Rachael
>
>
> --
> Dr Rachael Walker
>
>
> Head of Flow Cytometry
> 501, Babraham Institute
> Babraham Research Campus
> Cambridge
> CB22 3AT
>
> 01223 496559
>
>
>
>
> On 21/02/2014 19:48, "Fisher, Nancy C" <nancy_fisher at med.unc.edu> wrote:
>
> >Hi Vinko,
> >I did an analysis in 2012 of  flow core instrumentation and staffing for
> >the top 10 US universities, based on NIH funding. I collected my data
> >from information posted on each facility's website. The FTE count
> >included the Director/Core Manager
> >
> > These cores had an average of 5.3 sorters and 7.4 analyzers and  9 FTE.
> >The breakdown:   0.8 FTE  (+/- 0.3) per instrument (combined analyzers
> >and sorters) or 2.0 FTE (+/- 0.9) per sorter.  No core had less than one
> >FTE per sorter.  The numbers don't match up perfectly because some cores
> >do not include staffing information on their websites.
> >
> >The approach that Peter suggests, to query cores to self-report, would
> >probably be more accurate and contain a greater sample size. However,
> >these 10 cores are from our larger universities and it looks like your
> >core has a similar level of instrumentation.
> >
> >I hope that helps!!
> >
> >Best regards,
> >
> >Nancy C. Fisher
> >Director, UNC Flow Cytometry Core Facility
> >University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
> >Flowcytometry.med.unc.edu
> >
> >
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: cytometry-bounces at lists.purdue.edu
> >[mailto:cytometry-bounces at lists.purdue.edu] On Behalf Of Lopez, Peter
> >Sent: Friday, February 21, 2014 10:22 AM
> >To: 'Vinko Tosevski'; Purdue Mailing list
> >Subject: Re: [Cytometry] SRL staffing problems - need community feedback
> >
> >Hi Vinko,
> >
> >This question comes up a lot.
> >
> >I sent out a survey to the Purdue list in June 2009 asking similar
> >staffing questions and had over 50 respondents.
> >
> >In these labs there was an average of 2.3 cell sorters, 4.3 analyzers,
> >and  3FTEs. The FTE headcount for the survey included the lab director.
> >
> >My interpretation was that an SRL needs at least one FTE per cell sorter.
> >For my interpretation I did not heavily weigh the analyzer count because
> >in my core all analyzers are run by non-SRL staff , although the SRL
> >staff do perform  QC on all core analyzers and assist users having
> >issues.
> >
> >Now things have changed a lot and this survey should be repeated. There
> >are SRLs that are now successfully operating self-service sorters, and in
> >2009 cores didn't have many  ImageStream and CyTOF systems .
> >
> >I think it would be very helpful if ISAC (and maybe also ABRF)  could
> >formally address this SRL staffing issue with some sort of guideline or
> >best practice document.
> >
> >--Peter
> >
> >
> >Peter Lopez
> >Research Assistant Professor of Pathology Director, NYULMC Core Cytometry
> >Facility, Office of Collaborative Science
> >212.263.0635 (office)
> >http://ocs.med.nyu.edu/cytometry-and-cell-sorting
> >
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: cytometry-bounces at lists.purdue.edu
> >[mailto:cytometry-bounces at lists.purdue.edu] On Behalf Of Vinko Tosevski
> >Sent: Thursday, February 20, 2014 4:16 PM
> >To: Purdue Mailing list
> >Subject: [Cytometry] SRL staffing problems - need community feedback
> >
> >Dear all,
> >
> >We're having issues convincing the decision-makers at the University that
> >we're understaffed so I wanted to collect some feedback from the
> >community.
> >
> >We're a young core facility (established in 2009) but really grew in size
> >and complexity recently. Right now we're operating or maintaining
> >following
> >instruments:
> >
> >5 Aria III
> >1 Copas
> >2 LSR Fortessa
> >2 Canto II
> >
> >We have just received CyTOF 2 and in few weeks also ImageStreamX arrives.
> >We're a team of 4 people, but only 2 of us being full time, the other 2
> >members being employed only for 20%. I need to add that all these
> >instruments are scattered at 4 different locations across the city (each
> >satellite location having one sorter and one analyzer, the rest being at
> >our central site).
> >
> >On top of all this, we're training users on how to operate instruments,
> >organizing courses for graduate school, giving regular methodology
> >seminars for students and postdocs and so on... Needles to say, sometimes
> >there's no time to check our e-mails during the day.
> >
> >Am I really so much off when I say we're understaffed? We just managed to
> >get one 80% technician position that's gonna be dedicated to the one of
> >the satellite sites and were told not to expect any new people allocated
> >in the near future (?!?).
> >
> >I would love to hear about your situation. How many staff members, how
> >many instruments, what kind of stuff you do? I would put together a small
> >report that would (hopefully) convince the University heads that we're
> >not really asking for impossible, when compared to other sites across the
> >globe. Or, maybe I'll learn that others are having even harder time and
> >that my expectations are unrealistic.
> >
> >I am looking forward to your feedback. It's quite a unique request from
> >my side so feel free to simply reply privately.
> >
> >Best,
> >Vinko
> >
> >--
> >Vinko Tosevski
> >Technology Officer
> >
> >Flow Cytometry Facility
> >University of Zurich
> >Winterthurerstr. 190
> >CH-8057 Zürich
> >Switzerland
> >
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