Following significant investment in plant and machinery we needed to update our operational processes. The level of bar code scanning used within the business was increased to improve visibility and efficiency throughout the manufacturing process.
However, there was an underlying fault in the existing technical system (SAP system), which had never previously manifested itself or ever been identified by us or our technical partners.
When the technical fault initially appeared, it was sporadic and intermittent and not easily identified. It was only after a few weeks of extended use of the new bar code scanning system that the scale of the underlying IT fault was realised. The issue affected retail rigid carcase sales for Sheraton and Mackintosh items due for delivery from the 5th August 2019.
The technical fault resulted in a misalignment of product in the manufacturing process, which affected the sequencing of all materials to the assembly lines and packing areas. In a volume operation where we are handling ‘000’s of cabinets and components it had an unplanned and unprecedented knock on effect to all areas of manufacturing for rigid items and quickly created a significant backlog. This has required hundreds of hours of manual unpicking and resequencing until the technical fault could be stabilised.
Using a specialist team of IT consultants we have now addressed the SAP system and realigned the sequencing so that product is flowing correctly again. We have introduced additional evening and weekend shifts led by the senior management team – and many of our employees have voluntarily cancelled holidays and time off to help us to restore our usual high standards. However, a bit like road traffic after a traffic jam or temporary road closure we are left with a backlog of orders.
We have a plan to the address all unexpected issues and order backlog with two clear areas of focus.
The first is to deal with the backlog of orders (due for delivery from 5th Aug onwards) as a priority, and secondly to deliver future kitchens right first time to the new ‘temporarily extended’ lead-times.
Everyone at Omega is totally focused and committed to rectifying the situation and working through the backlog to minimise the disruption to your business and your customers. Whilst the nature of the issue means that we are unable to confirm precisely when outstanding items will be delivered, we are working through the backlog chronologically by delivery date.
Following the communication of the 21st August, I apologise that in some cases we have not been able to achieve the extended two-week lead-time for orders confirmed before the 21st August. We are working to correct this and I will have more information for you this week. Our customer service and sales team will update you as soon as they have details on your orders.
In addition, we have recruited additional resource in key operational areas and we are working closely with our third party IT partners.
We are seeing a significant improvement in manufacturing and everyone in the business is completely focussed on and committed to restoring service levels.
We know that whilst the product process flow recovers, things will not always run smoothly or as planned, which puts our colleagues and partners under greater pressure. All our staff understand the challenges and inconvenience delays can cause and are doing everything they possibly can for the good of all our customers.
With all actions being taken we expect to be fully operational with all issues resolved by week commencing the 7th October.
New Orders and Lead Times for Sheraton and Mackintosh
New Orders and Lead Times for Sheraton and Mackintosh
We are confident that all new orders placed going forward with the temporarily increased lead time will be delivered on time and in full.
We have temporarily increased our rigid lead times to ensure we can meet all future delivery commitments and avoid any further disruption or inconvenience. Therefore, as communicated on the 21st August Sheraton and Mackintosh orders placed will be subject to the following temporary lead times:
Non-painted Sheraton and Mackintosh items 6 weeks’ lead-time
Painted Sheraton and Mackintosh items 7 weeks
Additions and remedials within 2 weeks.
Because of the complexity and sequencing on the four lines we unfortunately are unable to prioritize any individual customers within these lead-times. We really appreciate this is very challenging for you as customers and we apologise for this further inconvenience.
Please note Chippendale and English Rose production has been unaffected and lead-times remain as normal.
How to Contact Omega
Our customer service team is working tirelessly to handle all queries and will be available from 9am-4pm (Mon-Fri) to answer calls. This enables the investigating and inputting of data for the final hours of the day. We hugely appreciate your cooperation at this time and would request that you only contact customer services in relation to these matters. This will help us to resolve all queries and backlog much faster.
Calls after 4pm will be directed to our customer facing support team in finance and secretarial support. Please note that this is only a temporary situation and we will notify you when we will be reverting back to our normal operating times.
At all other times please email your dedicated sales office email address and we will respond to you the following working day.
Please accept our very sincere apologies for falling short of the service you should expect to receive from Omega, and let us assure you we are doing everything within our power to restore our usual high service.