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nursery matters JOHN BARKER

Barking Mad Pramland’s John Barker is taking a look at stock issues and how this is having an impact.


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shoulder. I mean fire fighting in a customer service sense. I am of course referring to dealing with annoyed customers. But why would a customer ever be annoyed? After all they are known for their rational behaviour and calm understanding of any problems. Well it will come as no surprise to any retailers reading this that I am of course heading slap bang in to everyone’s favourite debate. . . .stock issues. Now before I start I need to make this VERY clear, I am not singling out any one supplier or brand. As far as I can tell EVERY brand we deal with has seen stock issues in some shape or form this year. Brands seem to have either had issues and have come out of them, or have been fine and are now facing them. I also need to make it clear that I fully understand the issues are as a result of circumstances completely out of everyone’s control. Unfortunately not all customers have the same understanding. I’ve mentioned in previous articles that during lockdown customers seemed more relaxed to potential delays as the situation was

very real and current. Every time they turned on their televisions they saw lockdown this, panic buying that and this seemed to appease them. Unfortunately when people started to return to work their lives started to return to something resembling their pre-lockdown life and they thought that meant everything should be normal again. They didn’t consider

the effects of a manufacturers factory being closed for a few months, nor did they think about the fact that once the factory re-opened it would only do so with a reduced production facility. They completely forgot that many of the worlds distribution networks where affected by Covid-19, from no containers leaving ports to that many containers leaving shipping

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020 has seen so many highs and lows it’s like an episode of your favourite TV show. We had the period of lockdown and then we all re-opened to unprecedented levels of business. I think it’s safe to say it took us all by surprise at just how busy ours store have been. We’ve seen the kids go back to school and the effects of local lockdown restrictions on trade. October seems to have been a quieter month for all retail yet as the end of the month approaches and Boris has announced his new lockdown tier system customers seem to have regained that urgency again. We’ve benefited from the closure of Mothercare and the fact that for many the holiday money sat in the bank might as well get spent on something for the new baby. I’m sat here mid October with the deadline for my article well and truly passed. But what’s been taking up all my time this month? Is it the increase in orders? Yes to a certain extent, it’s remarkable how soon busy becomes the new normal. Is it the increase in deliveries coming in to the already fit for bursting warehouse? Again, yes to an extent. The truth of the matter is that the majority of my time is currently being taken up with fire fighting. Don’t worry I haven’t taken up being a fire fighter in my spare time, I don’t have the physical attributes to be shimmying up and down ladders with a cat in one hand and old lady over my

No matter how we spin it we are and we responsible for completing their ordmerers will are un able to do so. Some custo ent item invariably insist on either a replacem or without any addition al co st to them venience. compensation for the delay and incon

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Nursery Today October 2020  

Nursery Today October 2020