As with everything else in the world, the security industry has been impacted by the global COVID-19 pandemic. Thankfully, we had the privilege of being deemed an “essential business” by the city of Westminster, CO in April of 2020. Isotec quickly adapted our procedures and processes to the rapidly changing global market as well as health and safety measures to ensure our quality was maintained and our staff was safe.
Security vs. The Supply Chain
Supply chains are crucial to more than just the availability of certain products in stores, they’re vital to whether or not a bussiness can flourish. There is a clear relationship between a company’s financial success and the depth and refinement of its supply chain. Every supply chain is made up of a million of moving parts working together; dozens of companies relying on their own materials, workers, machines, and shipping-, all hoping it their own supply chain is able to get them what they need to satisfy their clients.
One of the often overlooked necessities to achieve supply chain excellence, and thus financial excellence, is labor. Without labor, raw materials cannot be obtained and extracted from the Earth and finished products cannot be engineered, created, packaged, shipped, unloaded, and delivered to consumers. Right now, there are massive labor shortages that are disrupting supply chains on a global scale. This is in part due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and spikes in the newest variant of the virus, but there are a variety of other factors at play.
One of the most visible effects of how labor shortages affect supply chains can be seen in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. In September a record number of cargo container ships – more than 70 – were unable to unload the goods they carried because of a shortage of workers. This meant there were delays in goods being sent to businesses which saw delays in restocking that lead empty shelves and products becoming out of stock. Couple that with the fact that there are more labor shortages due to wage disparities and strikes both locally and nationally, many places are dealing with a lack of products hitting shelves and fewer items being available in online stores. There’s not just a shortage of people who unload cargo off of ships at a port – called longshoreman – but shortages of truck drivers, factory line workers, warehouse workers, retail workers, and more.
Labor shortages in other countries affect supply chains here in the United States because we have become so globally integrated. Similar to the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports, there have been delays are numerous Chinese ports all while we are still recovering from the blockage at the Suez Canal.
Labor shortages are happening all across the world and these staffing issues are affecting supply chains, impacting the efficiency of production lines and how quickly finished products can get to consumers.
What Isotec is doing to combat Security vs. The Supply Chain
We recognize how important what we do is for the country and how lucky we were to grow as a business during a pandemic, but does come with its own unique challenges. Understanding that while we are price takers over price makers, there are still client frustrations regarding changed procedures and pricing that we can not completely control. Longer lead times are everywhere in the supply chain, heavily affecting time and cost throughout nearly all industries.
Companies around the globe are hugely reliant on supplies and products from Asia. With the first outbreak coming out of China, their lockdowns brought thousands of factories to a halt. COVID-19 is still raging in much of the world, but especially so in less developed areas without vaccine availabilities. Unfortunately, that means that these places are unable to return to normal life and normal production rates. Because these locations are often the source of many niche electronic parts, the fact that we as a country are unable to produce them locally is especially devastating to the supply chain.
Luckily, we operate in compliance with the Buy American Act, meaning that 95% of our systems’ total value comes from American components. This does not mean that we are the exception to the new slow-downs, however. Lockdowns also swept our nation and lead to milling and manufacturing shut-downs. The lack of available material is raising demand, prices, and timelines.
Producing goods is one thing, getting the goods to companies who would deliver them to consumers was another. Global travel restrictions resulting from the pandemic forced various airlines to either completely suspend or at least reduce the number of flights, leaving companies looking for new options for international shipping.
Thankfully though, the worst of the pandemic appears to be behind us and we are optimistic about the future. We were even fortunate enough to grow our staff during the world-changing event and can’t wait to show our clients what we were developing while society was frozen. Isotec’s commitment to provide the best security systems on the market remains unchanged, even renewed as the we all settle back into our lives. Regardless of your security needs or your property’s size, we can design a system that works best for you and is highly effective. Contact us for a risk assessment today!
Those who threaten businesses don’t stop their attacks due to supply chain shortcomings, therefore we can’t stop creating the best security systems either. At Isotec, we are committed to sending you the best products on the market, and to ensure that we can, we are constantly expanding our supply chain. We are consistently vetting vendors to provide high-quality and timely materials in these uncertain times. Our promise to our clients is to be at the forefront of the solutions when presented with such issues.