If you’ve ever had the job of ordering school or college furniture for the start of a new academic year you’ll know that it can be fraught with problems. Will the tables for the new teaching block arrive in time ? Will there be enough chairs for the new intake …….? Will there be enough comfortable new chairs for the staffroom ?
The production of educational furniture (desks, tables, storage cupboards, classroom and office chairs etc) is highly seasonal. Thousands of schools, from Penzance to Aberdeen place their orders from April to August and expect to take delivery in time for the start of the Autumn term in September…
Unfortunately it’s almost impossible for manufacturers to meet such a demand and ensure that every school or college gets what they want in time….simply because there’s not enough production and transport capacity to meet the extra demand in the summer months.
And this year, the year of covid 19, has thrown a massive big spanner in the works as several furniture manufacturers have already shut down for nearly two months….. thus reducing production capacity even more.
Is there a way to improve the odds of getting your furniture delivered on time ….. ?
Here are FIVE things you can do:
- Decide as soon as possible exactly what products you want to order. This may mean discussion with the site manager, the finance office, heads of departments ….but it should be done as a matter of urgency.
- If at all possible your premises should be open for deliveries during part or all of the summer holidays. This will mean that manufacturers can make AND deliver your orders before the start of the new term. Provide your supplier with the mobile tel no of your site staff…
- If possible, be flexible. This is particularly important if you are late in finalising your orders. If you specify a different type of chair or table or a different colour it may mean that they arrive in time, whereas your ideal choice might not be able to be delivered until eg. October.
- Contact some local schools and see if there is a way of collaborating. One school may have spare tables, another may have excess chairs. It may be possible to borrow / loan / swop to help each other out.
- Last but not least…and this is very important. If you are replacing existing products then do not dispose of them until your new furniture arrives. This is vital as it means that even if the new furniture does not arrive on time then at least you can continue to use your existing chairs, tables etc.
If you are planning to order new furniture then please contact Central Educational Supplies Ltd.,
They have been supplying schools and colleges since 2004 and would be pleased to help. They can make suggestions and offer alternatives if you are having difficulty in obtaining exactly what you want. Their links with UK manufacturers and importers mean that they are able to source a wide variety of educational furniture….which in turn could benefit your organisation.
Their advice is free and without obligation, so if you’d like to chat and maybe discuss your furniture requirements please phone: 020 7515 1797 and ask to speak to Martin Evans. You’ll get the facts and impartial advice without any “hard sell.” That’s a promise.