Meredith Clark

Mayo Clinic Labs @ Work

Thousands of people in hundreds of different roles work at Mayo Clinic Laboratories. Mayo Clinic Labs @Work offers a glimpse behind the scenes into this busy reference laboratory, featuring staff from throughout the organization talking about what they do and why they do it.


What is your role at Mayo Clinic Laboratories, and how long have you been in it?

My role is a bid coordinator for Mayo Clinic Laboratories’ Bid Processing team, which is part of our Finance group. I’ve been in this role for four years, and I’ve been on the bid team for a total of 18 years. I started working as a laboratory bid analyst in August 2003 and then moved into the pricing analyst role in 2014.

Meredith Clark

Four years ago, I accepted this new role as bid coordinator. Prior to working on this team, I was a technical resource specialist. What got me to Mayo Clinic originally was my first job as a bench technologist in the lab then known as the Lipids/Lipoprotein Lab in 1995.


What does your day-to-day work involve?

Labs and hospitals outside of Mayo Clinic want to send their lab testing somewhere else because it may be more cost effective for them to send out their samples for testing. Our group bids on that business for Mayo Clinic Laboratories.

In my role, I create and manage processes with my colleagues so our team can work more efficiently. A great deal of my work is focused on test implementation. I help review the test implementation agenda to see what new tests or test changes might impact client pricing. I collaborate with other staff, such as product managers, to come up with a client pricing strategy. From there, I perform client price analysis that may entail adjusting fees for new tests.

I’m also part of a team that works to make enhancements with our bid tool application — a very robust tool we use every day in our work. Those enhancements help the bid team work more efficiently. I enjoy much of my day interacting with Mayo Clinic Laboratories teams and the bid team.


How does your work benefit providers and patients?

The bid team largely supports the field sales team. That team works with existing clients and new clients to bring additional laboratory testing to Mayo Clinic, and they can request anywhere from one test to thousands of tests that we then bid on. Oftentimes, there’s significant competition from other labs. The client pricing work that we do needs to be competitive enough to win the business. But more importantly, we want clients to use our services because we are aligned with the mission of having the right test ordered at the right time for the right patient. I feel good about being part of the success when we win business. But it’s not only about winning business. We’re trying to get testing through those client doors that meets patient needs, making sure our clients know what we have available to them. Many of our clients are regional labs. We work with them to expand the testing that they can offer to people in their area, and that has a significant benefit for those people.


Is there anything about your role that people might find surprising or unexpected?

With my background and experience as a laboratorian, I’m familiar with many aspects of the labs that people might not expect. For example, when I’m pulled into conversations where there are discussions about the optimal way to build a test, I can participate in those conversations. I have a degree in medical technology, so I can still speak lab. When I was a technical resource specialist, I supported clients and experienced how they were impacted by test changes, and I understand the financial impacts as well with my role today. That means I can lend my expertise on a lot of levels to help with the decision-making process.


What part of your job do you find the most challenging?

Balancing and prioritizing projects and day-to-day work is always a challenge. When I was in the lab, there was usually a concrete start and end to the day. In this role, the work flows from one day to the next. Managing workload and deciding on priorities for the day can be tricky.


What’s the most fulfilling part of your work?

Seeing success in the work that I have done and the projects I’ve been part of in collaboration with others is rewarding. For example, when there is good thought put into a client price analysis, and there are little to no calls from clients afterward — because we know we’d hear about it if there were problems — that is a win. I also lead and facilitate a project called the annual list review that involves working with  several departments. We start in August and finish in November. Now that I’ve worked on it for a few years and everyone understands their roles and deadlines, it goes very smoothly. Again, at the conclusion of that big project there is a feeling of accomplishment through collaboration. I’m proud to be part of a successful bid team.

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Tracy Will

Tracy Will is a senior marketing specialist at Mayo Clinic Laboratories where she covers innovation, specialty testing, and advances in laboratory medicine. Tracy has worked at Mayo Clinic since 2016.