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Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kit Processing: Five Objectives Toward Forming a Positive Relationship With a Private Vendor Laboratory

NCJ Number
Date Published
February 2018
3 pages
Because outsourcing DNA testing for projects that require an immediate surge in resources is a good way to use private partners with minimal impact on current crime laboratory initiatives, this report explains five objectives for creating positive partnerships with laboratories for processing a backlog of uncommitted sexual assault kits (SAKs).
One objective is open communication between the laboratories in the outsourcing project. The outsourcing laboratory should designate a liaison person to the vendor laboratory, who will be the main point of contact between the labs. A second objective is the creation of a shared vision. This involves the creation of a processing plan that includes a clear timeline of expected SAK shipments, laboratory reports and data package return, and SAK shipment return. A third objective is an effective site visit. A site visit provides the means for the agency's local laboratory to accept ownership of the work produced by the vendor for means of participating in the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS). A fourth objective is to provide feedback to the vendor once the outsourcing has started. Let the vendor know services are appreciated and also discuss policies or practices that are causing difficulty. A fifth objective is to be creative in developing or using more effective ways to be efficient without diminishing the quality of the work. Overall, remember that lapses in communication, vision, and feedback can have an adverse impact on project success.

Date Published: February 1, 2018