The COVID-19 pandemic’s grip on the world is easing up. Businesses are re-opening, activities are back, and people are starting to live normal lives again. However, with consumers at home and goods in higher demand than ever, economic growth has slowed sharply over the summer.
The supply chain bottlenecks have affected universities hard, including Arkansas Tech, where many remodeling projects have been rescheduled due to shortages of materials.
“Roofing materials for the Hull Hall project were delayed. We expected to do that project in June, but due to material delays, it was moved into the fall,” Jessica Holloway, director of business services, said. “As of last week, the contractor was still waiting on materials.”
According to Holloway, the new roof over Hull Hall is expected to be completed by the Christmas holidays, but the completion of the project will depend on the arrival of the materials needed.
Food service at Tech has also been hit hard. Ingredients needed to make meals have been delayed, and suppliers are spread thin distributing them across campuses.
“We oversee the Chartwells contract and they have reported shortages weekly on goods. Tortillas, of all things, were delayed from the supplier,” Holloway said.
The Information Technology department has also experienced delays. Products such as laptops, tablets and other accessories are the main items that have not been received.
“Even things such as docking stations and keyboard covers have taken three to five months to receive from some of our other suppliers such as CDW, Gov Connection and B&H Photo,” Cindy Hubbard, buyer in business services and procurement, said.
As of now, regular office supplies such as paper, stationery, and writing utensils have not experienced delays.