Economic pinch must be passed on

The headlines are gloomy this month, with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) forecasting that inflation in the UK is set to continue rising to over 10%, and the UK economy will grind to a halt in 2023 before things start to improve. The OECD puts this down to the shortage of workers and supplies, alongside high energy prices. 

This is concerning for all manufacturing industries, but particularly for the fire door manufacturing industry – the sustainability of fire door supply and competent fire door installers is key to ensuring buildings protect the life within them. Our mission to enhance life safety at every fire door involves maintaining quality above all else. Installing a fire door properly requires skill, and a fully functioning fire door can mean the difference between life and death in an emergency. We should never compromise on that.

We have already written about the pressure that the war in Ukraine is exerting on the door manufacturing industry, not forgetting the fact that the post-pandemic boom had already sent prices soaring in 2021 – we wrote about the need for sustainable pricing then too. We’ve also written about the danger of value engineering when it comes to life safety – poorly conducted e-commerce tendering can drive down price to the extent that corner-cutting starts to creep in. Clearly, we have a bee in our bonnet about this!

The projections from the OECD further impress on us that the current pinch is not a temporary blip (in fact it has already been here for quite some time!) and that we must take measures for the longer term. It is therefore a reasonable assumption that door manufacturers must pass on the rise in costs by increasing their prices if they are to remain sustainable businesses.  

Whilst attempting to weather the storm by absorbing price increases might have been a reasonable policy at the start of the year, the war in Ukraine and subsequent sanctions against Russia has changed all that, and the OECD report predicts that economic pressures are not going away any time soon. If the industry is to guarantee fire safety and security for future buildings, door manufacturers must be allowed to implement sustainable and realistic pricing to ensure that they remain in business to help provide that guarantee.

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