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.
After graduating from the University of Massachusetts, I was on the hunt for experience in the healthcare field. I started my career with Mayo Clinic back in 2015 as a contracted client site specimen processor at a client site location in Springfield near my home. My work involved preparing, batching and packaging samples for testing at Mayo Clinic Laboratories. At the time, I didn’t know much about Mayo Clinic. Now, after more than seven years of working here, I have learned quite a bit and have gained deep respect for our company’s patient-centric care.
As a field service coordinator, much of our time is spent onboarding and training new staff on the Client Site Specimen Processing (CSSP) and Regional Service Representative (RSR) teams. Both units are field-based and involve traveling to client locations around the country. We are also responsible for document control, and host regular presentations on topics including test updates, transportation schedule changes and anything else that impacts customer and field service work.
As a part of Mayo Clinic Laboratories, we provide accurate and timely test results for our providers and patients. This includes providers and patients at our client site locations. Many of the steps that happen “behind the scenes,” such as sample preparation or shipping, can affect lab test results. It’s very key for us to follow procedures and ensure test accuracy because our results will be used to make healthcare decisions.
Most people would be surprised to learn about the variety of tasks and duties our Field Service Support work unit handles. There are many new tools related to client test ordering in development that we are testing, improving and documenting every day. In addition, I am an equity, inclusion and diversity champion and I do my best to present and share that content with our work units.
It can be challenging to work in environments that are not open or receptive to feedback. The mindset, “this is the way things have always been done,” can sometimes make it hard to address issues or make improvements. It’s important to be respectful about these sensitive topics in discussion with a client. At the same time, we want to use the best and most efficient procedures possible. Sometimes, this can feel like a balancing act.
Growth and development of our team gives meaning to my work. Each day, we strive to improve our services and reduce issues that may interfere with accurate lab testing. It’s encouraging to see new employees become seasoned experts over time. As someone who was once a brand-new Mayo Clinic employee, I try to be an approachable and positive resource for my fellow team members.
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As supervisor of the Tissue Registry Archive, Annette Bjorheim finds purpose in her work to provide archived material for patient testing, education, and research needs.
Wendy is a clinical laboratory technologist who works in the Hematopathology Morphology Laboratory at Mayo Clinic Laboratories. Although she’s worked with Mayo Clinic since 1989, her greatest passion is serving others throughout the community.