Compared to other industries, education faces a unique set of supply chain issues.
Across the country, schools are dealing with a shortage of basic supplies—from paper and pencils to technology and toilet paper. As such, the education sector is constantly looking for ways to improve the way they manage their facilities and equipment. This means making sure the right tools and technology are in place to help students learn safely and effectively.
Education is not exempt from supply chain challenges
The supply chain is one of the most important aspects of a school’s operations; it’s what keeps students learning in climate-controlled buildings, classrooms stocked with textbooks, and teachers equipped with adequate technology.
But supply chain challenges within the education industry are nothing new. Districts often rely on vendors that specialize in specific services or have multiple providers for each piece of technology they use. To keep schools and instructional facilities running smoothly, education leaders need tools to help them make the best decisions in key areas of school operations.
- Instructional technology: When it comes to the classroom, there are few things more critical than instructional technology. Teachers depend on computers and tablets to create interactive lessons that make learning more engaging. Students use them to do research and complete assignments. But when schools struggle with scarce or out-of-date technology, students lose out on an important part of their education. The shortage of laptops and tablets can lead to higher costs for schools that are trying to keep up with growing student needs.
- Furniture: Steel is used in desks, chairs, lockers, and other classroom furniture. It also goes into construction projects like building new schools or renovating old ones—but when there isn’t enough supply on the market, contractors have no choice but to pass along those higher costs to school districts or higher educational institutions.
- School lunches: Labor shortages, along with rising food costs and other supply chain disruptions, are impacting processing and delivery schedules. This is forcing schools to look for new ways to manage their supply chains and ensure that students have access to healthy meals every day.
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