To say that 2021 has been an unusual year would be a massive understatement for those of us in the industrial products world. In my entire 40 year working career, I can not tell you how many times I have said or heard the expression, we have never experienced anything like this before.
I would also expect that many of you reading this feel as I do. None of us have lived through the confluence of events that has created this “Perfect Storm” of rising costs, long delivery times and reduced supply.
There are many thoughts and reasons as to why product prices, lead times and shipping costs have increased to record levels. The purpose of this letter is not to express my reasoning why, but rather to communicate what we can do to provide more value to our teams and customers during uncertain times.
GCP has adopted two operating principles in the second half of 2021. One, focus on providing access to products. Two, determine what we can do to provide as much certainty as possible.
Material shortages are real. Fortunately, GCP has a secure supply for our core brands and can get the products you need. Our mission to be your most valued partner demands accurate, effective and timely communication. GCP is in direct contact with our factory partners daily. Our information and knowledge comes from the source, not second or third hand.
In addition, GCP has sped up the pace of product development and is bringing new products to market. Equivalents to BISCO silicone foams, Masticated sheet rubber replacement and NSF61 rated sheet rubber are either being sold or in advanced stages of commercialization. If you are in need of a product, please contact GCP to find what you are looking for.
Accelerating certainty is the phrase we use at GCP to ensure that everything we do is designed to make your life (where we can) more certain. With all the challenges and changes swirling around us, GCP will do everything we can to bring clarity to your interaction with us. The goal is to lessen the load you have to handle.
One thing has become clear over the past 18 months, the way we run our businesses has to change. Gone are the days when you can order a product and expect it to be ready to be shipped with traditional lead times. Planning is crucial to your future success and growth. There is a saying by Benjamin Franklin – ‘If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!’ If you are not doing so already, you need to be planning 6 to 12 months out.
In 2020, GCP was able to deliver considerable cost savings to companies who committed to blanket orders for 2021. Our factory partners were able to pre-buy many raw materials which supported a fixed price over the blanket order period. As we transition to 2022 we face new challenges. Rapid raw material price fluctuations has made it difficult to set prices, however securing supply has taken precedence for many distributing and converting businesses.
To help with this, GCP has committed to a project we call, Predictive Ordering. We have developed proprietary software to analyze your purchases in order to forecast what you will require to order in the future. The program is designed to eliminate the detailed heavy lifting and remove the complexity from thinking 6 to 12 months ahead.
We can not change the fact that our industry is facing the “Perfect Storm”. What we can do is adjust for the conditions of the storm and come out ahead. Product on the shelf you can sell is key. GCP is here to help you plan for the future so you can get the products you need, when you need them. This is our way out of the “Perfect Storm”.
We look forward to serving you and helping you grow.
Until next time,
GCP Industrial Products