Posted on 5/31/2021 7:00:00 PM by Legrand AV Team
We are emerging from a pandemic that brought many digital signage projects to a halt. With new projects on the upswing and plenty of work to do, as if on cue, (record scratch sound) the industry is hitting a new speedbump – a combination of increased demand and material shortages. Even the Suez Canal had a clog, for crying out loud. And in a world that times supplies to minimize inventory, any delays can be catastrophic.
A Commercial Integrator article describes the shortage of semiconductors affecting power management, display devices and microcontrollers that was exacerbated by a quicker-than-expected economic recovery resulting in high demand. The article concluded, “Pro AV displays have seemingly been the most impacted, but I imagine integrators will soon be experiencing increased wait times for many other devices.”
If there’s anything the past year has taught us, it’s how to pivot. The pandemic forced much of the industry to quickly adapt to new safety guidelines and areas of opportunity when other markets shrank. We can take that mindset and plan now to mitigate future problems. As Darius Rucker once yarled in Hold My Hand, “We’ll rise above the mess, with a little peace and some harmony.”
We spoke to the Legrand | AV Digital Signage team about the emerging situation and what can be done. Luckily, we have a lot of ways to mitigate and plan for holdups in any digital signage integration plans.
“When your dream product is out of stock, we can find alternatives,” said Michelle Montazeri, National Solutions Manager. “Consultation services are needed in digital signage.”
“We know who has supply,” agreed Patrick May, National Sales Manager.
Here are the top tips from our digital signage team for keeping projects moving:
Plan a swap. Consider universal mounts over custom so you can use a substitute display while you are waiting for the final product.
Consider projection. Projectors are much brighter now and can be used in areas you may not have dared to before. Match with an ambient light rejecting screen and you’ve got a great digital signage solution. FullVision screens look great as a borderless option that blend into the background when not in use.
Go portable. Live event integrators can take advantage of portable screens and projectors for a versatile, budget-friendly solution as they begin to recover from the last year.
Rough-in the infrastructure. Phased installations can also be helpful to keep installers busy even if there are delays in some products. Place your in-wall storage, available equipment and mounts ahead of time. Middle Atlantic’s frame to furniture approach provides flexibility in installing equipment and having the finished panels shipped when you are ready for them.
Manage expectations. Speak to the content creators that often look to AV integrators for hardware solutions to be sure they understand the timeline. We can help bring pieces together and find the right partners to reduce bottlenecks.
Ask us! Legrand | AV’s digital signage team is also ready to help navigate using their industry connections to find displays that will work with your project. The earlier you get them involved, the better.
One of the most important things we can all do is remain open and transparent with our partners about our product availability. At Legrand | AV, we’re working to update the site with quick visual indicators that let you know what’s in stock and ready to roll, starting with Middle Atlantic. Our sales team is getting constant updates on impacted products. The best thing we can do is work together to get through this and that starts with communication.
This is all just another challenge, but we thrive in an industry that is continually evolving and overcoming obstacles. With a little planning and managed expectations, we’ll get there. We’ve got a hand for you.
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