This November, a record number of container ships were left floating off California’s busiest ports. The reasons are varied for the snag and other supply chain issues, including the global pandemic and labor shortages.
Because of these disruptions, supply-chain issues are significant and widespread in all industries. The global supply chain demands strategic management, but right now, shortages of resources and surging prices of critical materials have made this process incredibly complicated.
Unfortunately, because of this many companies are waiting months for their furniture. This issue poses challenges for vendors and consumers alike.
So how are you supposed to prepare for an upcoming shortage when you don’t know how long it will last? It’s not all bad news, and you can do things like working with vendors early and planning ahead to help you furnish your office during these lean times. There are multiple different types of office furniture to consider.
Here, we discuss how to plan ahead in creating your dream office space, while also navigating supply chain complexities.
How You Can Get around the Shortage
Optimum supply chain management has gotten the world accustomed to convenience, and it is largely dependent on the philosophy of the Just-in-Time (JIT) distribution system that originated with the Toyota Company in Japan.
Flash forward to today, and JIT doesn’t mesh well with the current supply chain congestion. There are weak links and delays in the supply chain that throws this system off since it depends on almost perfect distribution scenarios and optimistic levels of supply & demand variations.
And since the reality (wrecking ball) of today’s events is mucking up the works, many companies rarely carry excess inventory. And the shortages we’re experiencing today that affect furniture stocks are the very definition of inconvenience.
Still, there are ways to be creative and get around the shortages and extended lead times to furnish your office including:
- Planning your office space early
- Communicating with your company and building a plan
- Looking for a company that works with multiple vendors
- Going for used furniture
- Being flexible and ready for anything
What follows is a little bit more about these solutions.
Plan your office space early
Unfortunately, right now you can no longer buy an item and expect it within a couple of days — or even weeks. If you’re considering an office remodel or reconfiguration in the future, start making the necessary calls now.
While we’re all trying to figure out how to navigate the newfound struggles and complexity of the market, there’s one thing that’s for sure: You must plan ahead. Being proactive throughout the process is the best way to avoid the obstacles so many companies are facing.
One way you can get around the shortage is by planning ahead of time and using contacts in suppliers or manufacturers, so your company isn’t left scrambling to find alternatives when materials are delayed months later.
So research vendors, get quotes and discuss what the options are. Then, figure out your ideal timeframes and when you actually have to make an order.
Communicate with your company and build a plan
While you’re planning ahead with your office space, keep in mind that any plan is only as good as the company behind it.
Construction and remodeling can be a tricky process to navigate, but when you have a clear picture of what everyone wants, needs and expects from each other, this task becomes much easier.
Make sure all members of your team are on the same page about timelines, changes and expectations.
Remember that communication throughout this process is key, so make sure you’re talking with everyone involved to determine who can do what. This way, there won’t be any surprises when you finally submit your order or start construction.
Look for a company that works with multiple vendors
Since many of the items you’ll need will be in short supply, another good way to get around this is by going with a vendor who sources from several suppliers.
This means they have their own relationships and can often circumvent some of these issues by getting products faster or knowing when certain materials will become available. You can also work with your technical furniture vendor to identify any manufacturing potholes, so they can be addressed before your order is placed.
Go for used furniture
Another creative solution is looking into companies that offer used or refurbished furniture, which is often on par with new items for sale at a fraction of the cost. You can also blend new and used office furniture and reconfigure existing designs to maximize your investment and create the workplace you need in a more affordable way.
Also, if you’re planning to do renovations in your office space, then consider using temporary materials until you get all the parts needed for permanent fixtures. This is especially true if you’re planning to add a control room console to your floor configuration.
Be flexible and ready for anything
In the end, you can’t always avoid a wait when it comes to finding office furniture but there are things you can do along the way that make this process easier on everyone involved. To prepare your company for these shortages, be prepared with backup plans in case something doesn’t quite go as planned.
For example, plan for simple and effective office reconfigurations in case you don’t get the desired timeframe from your vendor. In addition, you can use temporary furniture or move into a smaller space until construction is complete if needed.
Having options like these when you need it most can provide peace of mind that everyone will be comfortable and productive throughout this process.
You can also get around the shortage by simply being more open to different options when it comes to furniture, colors or materials. While you may have had a specific vision in mind at one point, now might be the best time to rethink your look entirely in terms of what you can get your hands on.
If you’re flexible, then the only thing holding you back is what’s available to order right now. And by looking into options other than traditional materials that are prone to long lead times or high prices due to scarcity, you can find a way to work around the supply chain issues that are affecting every industry.
Let Saraval Industries Help You Prepare Your Office Space during the Supply Chain Shortage
For more information on how to prepare your office space with used and new furniture during the supply chain shortage, you can rely on Saraval Industries. We are a total service technical furniture dealer that is based in New York. Unlike our colleagues, we offer our customers multiple vendor selections in the technical furniture industry.
We can help you prepare your office during the supply chain shortage with our wide inventory of new and used conference room tables, monitor arms, protection screens, sit/stand desks and more. In addition, we make sure our office furniture or control room solutions fit with your budget, lead time expectations and project scope first before recommending a vendor and their solution.
To learn more or get a free quote today, you can call us at (516)-768-9033.