Increasingly long lead times for many products prompted SELECT and ECA to issue a joint alert to members, warning them of extended delays and urging them to plan ahead and order early. The advice from leading electrical trade associations comes on the heels of a recent warning from BEAMA that demand is likely to outpace supply for several months to come. The manufacturer’s trade association said the drastic drop in global steel production in the early days of the pandemic led to severe shortages. She added that since the mid-2020s, the demand for steel types used in cable management products has increased, along with other applications, as companies try to meet demand growth and complete unfinished projects. “Any shortage of materials is a problem that will clearly affect all contractors, so it is imperative that everyone plans in advance and take proactive action now,” said Alan Wilson, Managing Director, SELECT. “We are joining ECA in urging all members to keep abreast of any updates. And the realization that this may be a problem as the year evolves. “Ordering well in advance and dealing with potential shortages and rising costs will help if there is any ongoing disruption in the supply chain.” Steve Pratt, CEO of ECA, said: “When planning a project, keep in mind that the world has changed. Delays in availability of some materials affect the cost and completion time. Our advice is to order the materials you need in a timely manner to make sure that you can finish just as well. It is planned. We are in a developing situation, Member Support (link) will keep you informed when things change. ” Both organizations urge any members facing problems, or wanting to learn more, to contact their body. ECA and SELECT say they are committed to providing advice and finding solutions to help members overcome yet another obstacle created by these unprecedented times. The joint call comes two weeks after ECA and SELECT meet to identify key strategies and how to continue their close collaboration. The two leading bodies in the electrical appliances trade discussed skills, training and the green revolution during the virtual meeting where they discussed priorities for the second half of 2021 and beyond.