Shipment delays force CIOs to change computer purchasing strategies: 7 details

Faced with delays lasting weeks or even months, some CIOs are shaking up their computer purchasing habits by expanding vendor pools and stocking up on inventories of PCs to weather the shift in market, The Wall Street Journal reported Aug. 31. 

Seven details: 

1. HP and Dell Technologies, two major personal computer makers, said last week that the demand for personal computers has outpaced their ability to meet customers' orders. 

2. Shortages of semiconductors and various supply chain issues stemming from the pandemic, port backlogs and weather also have affected sales, according to the report. 

3. AARP CIO Najeeb Uddin told the Journal that it is waiting six to eight months for PC orders that used to take six to eight weeks. The nonprofit had been ordering PCs from various suppliers by thousands in occasional waves; now, it orders several hundred at a time and delivers 50 to 100 to its workforce each week, he said. 

4. Keeping frequent orders lets AARP build a big enough inventory to manage future needs, Mr. Uddin said. 

5. NTT Data Services typically gets laptops through vendor contracts with set pricing and warranties, but as the company faces six-month delays, it is opting to purchase laptops only as needed, NTT Data Services CIO Barry Shurkey told the publication. The company, which has 50,000 employees, said it plans to purchase about 15,000 devices this year. 

6. Not all CIOs have been hit by the PC shortage, though: Mani Sundaram, CIO of networking services company Akamai Technologies, told the Journal that the company hasn't seen any noticeable delays on its computer orders. 

7. Mr. Sundaram said the company may be experiencing fewer difficulties because it works with a variety of vendors and places PC orders for about 1,000 units about every six months, well in advance of its needs.


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