Lead Times and the Supply Chain Shortage

Lead Times and the Supply Chain

There are many signs that society is headed in the direction of “back to normal.” Virus numbers are going down in many parts of the country (and in some parts of the world), people are going out more, and there’s an increased demand for many products and services. Those encouraging signs are becoming clearer as time goes on.

But there’s another sign that also indicates that business and consumer demand is growing, and it’s not as encouraging for many companies: Growing shortages across a large number of sectors. From semiconductors to lumber, entire industries are facing unprecedented price increases and delays, as the materials simply don’t exist to create enough products to meet immediate demand. Compound these shortages with global transportation issues, and many businesses, their vendors, and suppliers, not to mention their customers, are facing challenges at the exact time when patience and understanding is also facing a shortage. Lead times are growing, supply chains are facing increased stress, and businesses need to deal with the fallout while keeping their customers happy.

As a result, companies face multiple obstacles due to these issues, and they’re impacting a wide range of industries. The domino effect of raw material price surges and shortages are being felt across many unrelated businesses. The record price of steel, for example, affects home appliances and vehicles. Semiconductor shortages also affect vehicles and home appliances and computers, light bulbs, and any modern business that requires up-to-date infrastructure to compete in their industry.

Specifically, IT hardware and network asset needs affect every aspect of your business, and supply chain shortages and longer lead times can delay your work product from getting into customers’ hands. While you can’t eliminate these problems, there are a couple of ways to protect your company and make business obstacles easier to navigate.

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