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Our Challenges During Covid

July 30th, 2021 by Gabi Crespo

How Covid Challenged Us

The pandemic has affected millions of people, families, and businesses throughout the world in ways that are difficult to predict, and unfortunately, we have not been the exception. The spread of coronavirus is felt globally; however, severely impacted regions are at the heart of our supply chain, leaving us vulnerable. We want to give you an inside look at our supply chain, international events and other factors that will continue to impact us. 

Our Supply Chain Explained

Understanding how our supply chain works is a crucial factor in understanding the current challenges that we are facing. In simple terms, the supply chain includes point A and point B. Point A being our manufacturers in Taiwan, and point B being our fulfilment warehouses in the USA and Canada. Between them, there’s a whole system that includes transportation (ships and planes) and partner companies that make it possible to get our tools from point A to point B so you can have the tool you need in your workstation. 

Challenges On Both Sides Of Our Supply Chain

The many issues that are impacting us, and it starts with production and carries through to importing, warehouse receiving, and then delivery to our customers. There are raw material shortages combined with previously placed orders tripling in size. There are shipping issues like port congestion for both departing and arriving cargo vessels and the shipping vessel that blocked the Suez Canal for six days that wreaked havoc internationally, the impacts of this are still being felt today. Lastly, there are workforce shortages due to outbreaks of Covid and a surplus of unfilled positions for receiving warehouses and order fulfillment. These are only a few examples of the challenges that exist, but you can see the vulnerability that exists in our supply chain that is unfortunately, out of our control. 

What is the impact?

Those challenges mentioned equate to a 150% and 450% increase in some raw materials and shipping costs, respectively (these will only continue to rise). Our lead times have extended from 3 to 8 months, turning our weekly shipments into quarterly. We are subsequently stocking out of some of our products from time to time, and our new product launches are delayed. Considering all of these factors, we are doing our best to maintain our current prices and avoid any stock-outs in the upcoming months.

Our Mission Is The Same No Matter The Challenges 

We wanted to be transparent about the challenges that we are facing not for sympathy but to let you see the inside of our operations and what we are up against. With that said, no matter what challenges we face, our tools will continue to exceed professional standards, will be made from the highest quality materials, and will still be professionally tested to ensure that your new tools will last a lifetime. We want you to know our team is working extremely hard to get the professional-grade tools you need when you need them. We will continue to ensure the best shopping and customer service possible. On behalf of the entire team at Olsa Tools, thank you for your support and understanding during these circumstances.