Understanding Supply Chain Realities and How We Can Help You

After two years of supply chain issues, you might assume that extended timelines and material availability would have improved. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case. Instead, the reality is that delays and shortages are still prevalent and even worsening on some fronts. But it isn’t all bad news! 

Renovations and new builds are still booming in popularity, and we have evolved and learned to navigate this new normal with creative problem solving and lots of patience. Today, I’m sharing an update on the supply chain, what you can expect, and how we keep things running smoothly while helping you triumph over potential challenges.

 

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Current Supply Chain Realities

First, it’s essential to accurately understand what’s happening behind the scenes of the supply chain. Facing these realities head-on will help you set reasonable expectations for your project timeline. Let’s take a look at the 3 main reasons for a supply chain delay… 

1. Material & Resource Delays

As demand has risen, the availability of materials and resources has decreased. Although significant product delays exist in numerous industries, the most prominent issues for our industry includes:

  • Cabinet lead times, with a 5-month wait or more
  • Appliances can take anywhere from 6 months to over a year
  • Windows can arrive anywhere from 3 to 6 months after placing the order
  • Materials imported from Europe and Asia are constantly delayed

2. Transportation Issues

Shipping dates are continuously getting pushed back, not due to shortages in materials, but due to shortages in labor and the shipping containers themselves. As a result, the trucks take longer to arrive, and once containers arrive at the port, it takes longer than ever to get them through customs. This impacts our project plans because we aren’t always certain when items will appear. 

3. Skilled Labor Shortages

This is likely the most significant issue of all. It seems like part of the workforce vanished into thin air! It has become extremely challenging to hire skilled labor, and when we find the right candidate, we need to offer a higher hourly wage (up to 20% more) compared to pre-pandemic rates…and competition is high!

So…what does all of this mean for your project?

 

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How Will Supply Chain Issues Impact Your Project? 

After working on many mid-pandemic and post-pandemic projects, we’ve noticed a couple of common challenges you may face regarding the supply chain. 

Nothing is guaranteed. Before the pandemic, we would rely on our vendor catalogs for available products and styles and incorporate them into our design. Currently, we have to call the vendor first to confirm availability. By the time we integrate it into our design, draft the plans, and provide proposals to our client, that item may no longer be available, and we could end up back at square one.

Lead times are constantly changing, making it challenging to plan the construction process. For example, our cabinet company confirmed that the cabinets would ship on a specified date, so we built our schedule around that date. After we had begun construction, we received notification that the ship date was pushed out 2 to 3 weeks, which completely threw off the other trades following the cabinet installation. 

I know these inconveniences sound debilitating, but the good news is that we’re here to help you navigate these challenges — and we have a TON of experience doing so.

 

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How Can We Help You Navigate Supply Chain Delays?

As we’ve faced erratic timelines, unexpected delays, and uncertainty with supplies and labor, we’ve worked hard to adapt to these inconveniences and help you make the most of the situation. Here’s what we can do:

1. Expanded Vendor Pool

To keep up with the demand, we’ve had to expand the pool of vendors with whom we work. We’ve spent years cultivating relationships with trusted vendors and as of lately, we’ve dedicated time to finding additional, reliable vendors for our clients’ projects. Having a larger pool of options means a greater likelihood of getting items on time.

2. Constant Communication

We’ve always had a seamless experience managing our projects, but we’ve tightened the process to include daily up-to-date information on where the project stands, because it is constantly changing. That also means staying on top of which vendors have in-stock materials and which items are readily available. Things might change often, but you will never be in the dark or have to manage them yourself.

3. Bringing Solutions, Not Problems

We are here to address any issues that may come up during your project. It’s our job to absorb the overwhelm of an ever-changing landscape so that the process is as stress-free as possible. This is the value of hiring an expert that knows how to roll with the punches, make the right calls, and guide you through this changing landscape with as much poise and efficiency as possible.

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As they say, “the proof is in the portfolio” — we have completed over a dozen projects since the pandemic’s beginning (including all the project photos featured in this post), with several more in the pipeline to finish this year. So not only have we completed the project successfully, but they are magazine-worthy! 

On a personal note, I honestly can’t express how much it means to us to have clients who continue to put their trust in our team’s hands. We take this responsibility very seriously and will continue to do everything in our power to make it the exciting, rewarding experience it should be.

If you’re ready to hand off your renovation or new build project to trustworthy experts willing to go the extra mile, we’d love to hear from you. Book a discovery call with us, and let’s get to know each other. 

Warmly,

Leila