Cyberpower Service Update -- 13/01/21
Topic: Cyberpower Service Update -- 13/01/21
Posted: 13/Jan/2021 at 11:43
Cyberpower Service Update -- 13/01/21
In light of recent order delays and extended response times to customer queries, we felt it was time to give an explanation of current circumstances in order to better manager customer expectations. Our updates are usually brief; this update will be longer than usual so please have a seat.
At the moment there are two main issues we are facing which are service levels and supply delays. We'll address both.
Firstly, service levels. In 2020
we implemented a ticketing system (Zendesk) to allow us to better manage the
increase we've experienced in customer queries. These range from customers
looking to place orders through to customers looking to chase orders. We set
ourselves the target of answering all incoming queries (email, social media)
within four working hours; over the past few weeks we have been woefully short
of this target. This is due to a number of factors (details later) but the
simple fact is we have been utterly overwhelmed with the volume of queries
which have been received.
We have increased the size of the
team and the staff here are working extremely hard, some giving up their free
time on evenings and weekends, to help reduce the backlog. It is working, and
we are making progress. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, the
ongoing pandemic has made an impact. Staffing levels have been affected where
some have had to work from home and self-isolate. Realistically, as with every
industry right now, this is an issue which will continue for some time until
the pandemic is eradicated.
Our telephone lines are now
constantly busy with no lull in demand. The staff are taking calls all day,
every day, but we appreciate many customers remain unanswered. We fully
understand this is not good enough. Should you wish to contact us by telephone,
please do, and if we do not answer there is the option to request a call-back
and these are all being actioned.
We are extremely grateful to all customers who have been, and continue to be, patient with us. We apologise for the dip in the service levels - we're extremely proud of who we are and the service we've offered customers over the years, so please be assured we are doing everything we can to return service levels to a standard we're happy with. One thing we would request is, as much as we fully appreciate the frustration and anger many customers are feeling at this time, please do not abuse the staff. It will not be tolerated. Everyone on the team is eager to help and they are helping hundreds of people every day as quickly as possible.
Supply Delays - Products
Secondly, we come to supply delays. The simple explanation here is there is an overwhelming demand for products which the manufacturers cannot keep up with. We'll explain in a little more detail below.
Again, at the risk of sounding like a broken record, there is an ongoing worldwide shortage across a number of products. This has been well publicised in the press, in updates from ourselves and from our competitors. Regardless of whether you've made a purchase from Cyberpower UK or from one of our competitors, every one of us is being impacted by the ongoing supply issues.
The product delays which are the most well-known at the moment are GPUs and CPUs. Nvidia's RTX 3000-series and AMD's 6000-series GPUs are both phenomenal products which are in the midst of ongoing delays around the world. This has been the way since both product ranges launched. The primary issue facing us, and our competitors, is we have minimal visibility on when stock will become available. This is not due to a lack of effort, or any complacency on our part. We are talking to our partners every day, we are chasing our partners every day and we are doing this at the highest levels. However, stock allocation is unpredictable. We are in a position where, if the stock were available, we could take in thousands of GPUs and we have the capacity to build through our backlog very quickly once stock is available. The reality is the stock is only coming to us in batches. Some are larger than others (this can and has ranged from single units to hundreds of units) but we are continuing to chase for additional stock every day.
AMD's Ryzen 5000-series are tremendous products. However, as with GPUs, the range has also been mired by supply delays and a general lack of availability worldwide. This is purely down to demand; AMD cannot manufacture these products fast enough. Again, we are chasing our back orders every day but the visibility of stock is unpredictable. AMD are doing everything they can and we continue to work alongside them to secure as much stock as possible as swiftly as possible.
Supply Delays - Logistics
There are other supply delays
which have not been covered quite as famously as GPUs and CPUs so we'll cover
them now. These are mainly, but not limited to, Cases, Cooling products, and
These delays are impacting us and our competitors alike.
These delays are not due to a
lack of product availability; they are down to logistical problems which are
impacting every industry in the world. At Cyberpower, we're in the fortunate
position to be able to purchase most of our case/cooling/power products
directly from manufacturers such as Corsair, Cooler Master, Lian Li, NZXT etc.
We purchase these in bulk and they are shipped to us in shipping containers,
usually from China. Under normal circumstances, when we place an order for
cases, they would take 4-5 weeks to be manufactured and then an additional 4-5
weeks for delivery as they travel by sea from China to the UK. In total, we'd
have most of our products in stock in the UK within 8-10 weeks of us placing
our orders with the manufacturer.
Over the second half of 2020, the demand on the shipping services from China increased to levels which have never been seen before. This is due to the enormous worldwide spike in demand for PPE equipment as well as a huge increase in demand for technology products such as the new generation consoles, PC components, new smartphones, and a myriad of other products.
The situation reached a point in November 2020 where the shipping companies were running out of space on their vessels, so space was then sold at a premium. As such, this was adding an additional 2-3 weeks on top of the usual waiting times.
In December 2020, the issue developed further and continues now, where the shipping companies have been running out of shipping containers. This in addition to the issues with space on vessels, so there have been instances where stock in China has had to wait for over a month before it could be shipped to us.
This issue is further complicated
by the UK ports. There has been too much incoming freight traffic to the ports
for them to be able to cope. This initially led to delays as container vessels
had to wait before docking. It has now gone further as the shipping lines are
actively advising some of their vessels to bypass the UK entirely and drop the
containers in other ports around Europe and elsewhere. This adds an extra 1-3
weeks as new transportation has to be arranged for these containers on smaller
feeder vessels. One specific example is we had a container which was due to
dock in Southampton; the container was dropped in Tangiers (Morocco) along with
every other container that vessel was due to drop in the UK.
Overall, the logistics situation means that orders which would usually take 8-10 weeks are now taking perhaps 16-20 weeks. There is no quick fix for this situation. Both we and our competitors have been impacted, as you will see from a lack of options available on websites or the presence of 'pre-order' only tags on many products.
At Cyberpower, we're quite fortunate to have a very solid procurement department. We have excellent relationships with the manufacturers at the most senior levels and we have a lot of in-house expertise for logistics and freight. With that in mind, we would like to assure customers we have a lot of stock en route to us. Whilst there is nothing we can do to avoid the logistical issues currently facing everyone, we are working extremely hard in concert with our freight partners to gather information as quickly as possible so we can better inform customers. Whilst we detest delays, we understand they are currently inevitable for some products, and we're doing everything we can to alleviate this by warning customers as early as possible.
Supply Issues - Brexit
The newest issue is Brexit. Many
of the products we have on order from manufacturers such as MSI, Asus etc, come
to us via Europe as this is where these manufacturers have their main European
warehousing. Large batches of stock arrive in Europe which are then divided up
and shipped to the likes of ourselves.
Additional administration has been required to move products into the UK from Europe since the start of 2021, which is causing large shipping delays on both sides of the channel. Whilst we made every effort to be ready for the transition at the start of the year, we are finding many in Europe were not ready. As such, there are delays at the ports in the UK and also in Europe.
We are working with our partners to minimise these issues and will advise customers as quickly as possible should any of them become an issue for orders.
Apologies for the long update, we felt it was warranted and full transparency would help inform customers of the ongoing challenges the industry is facing.
These challenges are not exclusive to Cyberpower, they are being faced by every other system builder in the UK. They have been and continue to impact the high level of customer service we aim to deliver every day and, for this, we can only apologise once again. The majority of these issues are outside of our control and our scope of influence. However, we are doing absolutely everything we can behind the scenes to reduce the impact these issues are having on customers and we will continue to do so.
We would like to assure customers
we have more than enough products on order with manufacturers to take care of
our order backlogs. We have more than enough stock en-route from China, and due
to arrive soon, to minimise delays. The effort internally to work through the
backlog of customer queries is enormous and this will continue until the
backlog is cleared.
We thank all customers for their orders, their patience and their understanding. These are some of the most challenging conditions we have ever seen and we are working hard to overcome them.
Stay safe, and thank you.
The Cyberpower UK Team
Edited by Dave - 13/Jan/2021 at 22:24
|Forum Jump||Forum Permissions
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot create polls in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum