Purchasing has been in contact with departments across the University regarding an increase in the instances of backordered items or orders not being filled due to vendor out of stock situations. As many of you are aware and may have experienced personally, there is large scale disruption in the world supply chain. Items are out of stock/on backorder for many reasons that are evolving daily, including global shipping bottlenecks, shortages of raw materials or manufacturing components, labor shortages, and manufacturing shutdowns.
Our suppliers are also experiencing this disruption and are doing what they can to keep pace with the demand for products. However, suppliers are not consistent in how they handle out of stock/backorder notifications. While some vendors proactively flag backordered items in their catalogs, others may not notify you until an order has been placed or not at all.
There are a few things that you can do to help mitigate your chances of finding yourself in an out of stock/backorder situation:
Plan purchases as early as possible, but do not bulk buy (which only contributes to the problem)
Track orders to ensure they are fulfilled and delivered timely
Contact suppliers when items are backordered to understand expectations for order fulfillment
If Preferred Suppliers are not providing adequate response or service on backordered items, please contact Purchasing at email@example.com. Purchasing Services will address the issues with the supplier and can also assist departments in locating item(s) as needed.