Joint call for industry unity

Ryan Green, managing director of Clayton Glass

Nineteen suppliers to the home improvement market have written an open letter to the fenestration industry, calling for a united approach to delivering continuity of supply in the current trading climate. Amid unprecedented demand and global supply chain pressures, the signatories called “for everyone in our industry to show a #unitedfront in order to weather a common storm”. Read the full letter here.

Through the letter, bosses from companies including Clayton Glass, Conservatory Outlet, Consort, Emplas, Glazerite UK Group, Nationwide Windows and Doors, Solar Frame and Sternfenster, jointly address several Covid-19-related issues that are currently hampering how they can meet the national appetite for doors, windows, roofing systems and glazing products. The firms, which are based across the UK and span different specialisms of the supply chain, lay out three of the main challenges, including disruption with materials, rising prices/energy costs and significant labour shortages due to the pandemic and Brexit.

“I don’t think anyone could have prepared us for what has happened in the last 20 months – from having to close due to government guidance and making our factories Covid-19 secure, to then having to scale up to cope with what has been a 130% increase in demand for many of us,” explained Ryan Green, managing director of Clayton Glass, one of the driving forces behind the letter. “It would have been a big enough challenge on its own, but we are having to achieve this against a backdrop of global shortages in our core materials, workforce uncertainty due to isolation/a lack of workers and now rising prices across the board.”

Ryan continued: “This cocktail of issues has unfortunately caused suppliers across our industry significant difficulties, and we can’t escape the fact lead times have been pushed out and supply has been disrupted. The letter isn’t a sob story, it’s more a case of trying to give our customers and, in turn, their customers, a clear insight into what we are all dealing with. It’s not one company doing something wrong, these issues are affecting all of us.

“We will continue to work round the clock to deliver a product and service that clients are happy with, and we are confident that together we will correct these issues and things will stabilise – it’s just the timing that is currently uncertain. If any industry can adapt and emerge from this year stronger than ever, it’s ours.”