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VMAC survey: Majority of service truck professionals report supply chain challenges impacted business

A VMAC air compressor
A VMAC air compressor

VMAC surveyed 340 service truck industry professionals, and an overwhelming majority of 83 percent of survey respondents reported supply chain challenges are negatively impacting their businesses.

VMAC surveyed owners/operators, mechanics, fleet managers, and upfitters from the service truck industry for the 2022 State Of The Mobile Compressed Air Industry Report. Regardless of the job titles and industry segment, the global supply chain challenges have impacted almost every survey respondent.

"When facing the global supply chain challenges, it's easy to identify barriers, but the industry's future leaders will figure out alternatives, find new markets, or take advantage of where their competition is floundering," notes Tod Gilbert, VMAC's president. "There's also an opportunity for businesses to respect their customers and be transparent when challenges arise, showing what it means to be a partner."

Nearly half of respondents were impacted by skilled labour shortages (47 percent), internal equipment/truck purchase delays (47 percent), and increased business expenses (45 percent). Additional impacts included increased employee absences (42 percent), delays in customer equipment and truck purchases (41 percent), and low employee morale (37 percent).

When asked more specifically how the shortage of truck chassis has impacted their businesses, 64 percent of respondents could not replace their aging trucks within their fleet. A third (33 percent) could not fill customers' service truck orders, and a quarter (25 percent) experienced stalled company growth.

"The chassis shortage impacts many customers, dealers, and partners," says Yolande Freed, VMAC's supply chain manager. "In addition, industry professionals are now faced with rising component, raw materials, and freight costs. Pair that with increased lead times on most materials resulting from factory labour shortages and shutdowns, and a lot of uncertainty remains."

This uncertainty shows in the survey results, with respondents sharing mixed outlooks. Only 30 percent of industry professionals expect business conditions to improve, while 28 percent think conditions will worsen. Meanwhile, 42 percent of respondents believe business conditions will stay the same.

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