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Business Skills for Core Facilities


- November 10 & 12, 2020  

November 17 & 19, 2020 

Time: 1:00 - 3:00 ET

The Business Skills Workshop is full and registration has closed. 

Important Zoom Information: 

The business skills workshop will be utilizing Zoom breakout rooms during the sessions. In order for this to run as smoothly as possible, participants must be joining from the Zoom desktop client in version 5.3 or later. This will ensure participants can self-select different breakout rooms when prompted. You can download the newest version of Zoom by going to and look for "Zoom Client for Meetings." 

Core facilities provide instrumentation and services to a wide range of investigators and institutions. The seemingly straightforward fee-for-service model used in most cores is in reality a sophisticated integration of science and business. Core Facilities are born out of scientific need, but they are also driven by compliance and uniform guidance set forth by the federal government. Even though these two entities work in tandem, there often is a gap in understanding the relationship between science and business by the scientists and administrators of core facilities.

Business Skills for Core Facilities will provide a hands-on approach in addressing the business side of operating a core facility. Beginning with an overview of the pieces that make up a core, the program will then proceed with the manner in which science and business work together to operate efficiently. This will include recognizing the value of your customer, how to use information from that relationship in the evaluation of the performance of a core, and how that information can be effective in defining how a core is managed to its maximum potential.

This special program will be presented in four segments, each scheduled for  
1:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET:

Tuesday, November 10                              Thursday, November 12
Tuesday, November 17                              Thursday, November 19

The sessions are designed to be highly interactive, including work in small groups. They will cover developing the mission statement, creation of a business plan including exercises in budget development, review of policies and procedures established by the OMB, purchase and lease agreements of fixed assets and compliance issues through actual audit findings. During the workshop, we will also explore core marketing and aspects of customer relations that are crucial in establishing a successful service. The intent is to provide a comprehensive understanding of the relationship of the science, the customer, and the business side of operating a core.

The Business Skills Workshop, through instruction and exercises, will provide attendees with the tools to better communicate and better understand the need and the requirements of core facilities best business practices, thus, creating a relationship of cooperation between the scientists and administrators. We also will encourage participants to network with their ABRF colleagues to explore further the commonalities and uniqueness of the various business components that are required for an efficient operation of a core facility. 


Tom Colella, Arizona State University

William Hendrickson, ABRF Past President, University of Illinois Chicago (retired)

Justine Kigenyi, University of Kansas Medical Center

John Langone, Core Facility Business Manager. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Jeff Smith, Johns Hopkins University

Annabelle Stein, ABS Consulting

All registrants will receive pre-workshop materials and a short assessment to help the workshop leaders tailor the program content.



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