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Supply Chain

Containing COVID Vital to Economy

Long-term effects of the pandemic are creating a challenge for more than just individuals and families. Businesses large and small are hurting because of what COVID-19 has done to the global supply chain.

In fact, 90% of businesses reported disruptions because of the virus back in April 2020. Two years later, that number has fallen only to 66%, nationwide.

Here, businesses are doing a little better, but still struggling. In West Virginia, 41.9% of businesses say they are seeing domestic supplier delays. In Ohio, the figure is a little higher, at 48.8%.

According to a report by David Heacock for Filterbuy, “The onset of the pandemic and subsequent waves temporarily shut down businesses or had them operating at limited capacity, while labor shortages in the logistics industry have frequently left goods sitting at ports and warehouses. These issues created additional challenges further downstream in the supply chain. Businesses that struggled to secure supplies, parts, or other materials faced increased difficulties meeting their own production quotas.”

At the same time, demand actually increased, as many started shopping online — a trend that has not slowed.

For Ohio, that has meant nearly 30% of businesses are also experiencing delays in delivering or shipping to customers. In West Virginia, that figure is closer to 23%.

Businesses are having a tough time finding alternative suppliers, and are being hit by heavy production delays. It must be maddening, particularly as they then turn around and face criticism from angry customers.

Be patient, folks. Remember, if it is going to take months to get your car repaired at the body shop, or your favorite item is not on store shelves, it is not the fault of the local men and women just doing their best to keep their businesses afloat.

In the meantime, continue to do all you can to prevent the spread of this and other illnesses. Get vaccinated or boosted if you have not already; and practice all the techniques we know can contain the virus. If we do not, there’s no telling how great (and how long lasting) the damage to the global supply chain might be.

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