Scientific Update's founder and consultant, Dr Trevor Laird is highly sought after for his valuable knowledge and extensive industry experience - Chemistry and Industry asked for his insights in this Interview in the September 2012 issue.
What do they bring to the table?
We are all familiar with the expression ‘those that can do, those that can’t consult’ but is this really fair? In this article I plan to explore what it is that consultants bring, both positive and negative, when they’re engaged, based on my own experiences of using consultants, working within a CRO where my clients used consultants to challenge my proposals and most latterly, working as a consultant to support chemical development programmes for my clients.
In this article I will cover the following key questions;
- When do you need consultancy input?
- What value does it add?
- Who is appropriate?
- Threats to internal staff?
In order to answer these questions and focus the discussion points, I will use examples from chemical process development and scale-up to illustrate where and how Scientific Update has positively contributed to the success of many projects for numerous clients.
More often than not, we are contacted at Scientific Update by potential clients when they have a problem and the standard battery of internal solutions has failed to reach a satisfactory conclusion. This brings me to my first point; obviously you will argue that consultants would like to be engaged early to ensure a longer collaboration for increased revenue, but in fact it is often so the very expertise you are paying for can be brought to bare on the issues early and likely help stave off the very issues we are subsequently asked to solve through not having been contacted sooner! So, this brings me to troubleshooting.