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Thursday, 2 July 2009

The August shutdown..

In the office furniture industry - at this time of year at least - there is one phrase that can make a big difference to a project lead time. "Summer shutdown".

For the month of August - pretty much all the factories in Italy, Spain, France and mainland Europe close for the annual shutdown. The machines are cleaned and serviced, the systems revised and stock levels checked. To be fair - it's a pretty good idea. Whilst us Brits are sloggin our guts out in the August heat - the rest of Europe downs tools and goes on holiday!

This does affect the industry here in the UK though. If you are ordering furniture from an Italian factory and the lead time goes into August - you can basically add 3-4 weeks to the normal lead time. For example if the normal office furniture lead time is 4 weeks, and you order in mid July - you probably won't get the furniture until mid September.

There are ways round this in some ways - if you are dealing with a genuine furniture expert, they will advise you of the issue at the very beginning. They could use a UK factory, or make sure you know when the order needs to be in to get the last despatch before closedown. A day, or even a few hours can make the difference to getting that executive desk, or glass boardroom table when you need it.

That said, the Italians in particular make some amazing contemporary office furniture - and it is often well worth the wait!

Speak to Verve Workspace for some timely advice and friendly expertise. Our website is at www.verveworkspace.co.uk .

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