We understand in a world still struggling to bounce back from COVID, lead times and back-order dates are unfortunately becoming the new normal in the durable medical equipment world. While AAA Mobility strives to continue rolling inventory to eliminate, or at least reduce the lead times for supplying equipment, as lead times grow, the time between deliveries increases. So, I wanted to use this month’s blog to explain how the ordering process works.
In our show room, we have a variety of scooters and powerchairs available, some of them are for specific customers while others are inventory equipment. When I say inventory, I specifically mean scooters that are not assigned to a specific person. These scooters are available today; however, I cannot guarantee that they’ll be available tomorrow because these are the scooters, we fill orders with.
When you order power mobility equipment such as scooters, vehicle lifts or power wheelchairs and the term “lead time” is used. It means that the manufacturer is missing a component, or components of the power mobility equipment however they have a date for when those component(s) will be available. This is not a concrete date, but a rough estimate for when equipment will ship if the component(s) comes in when they’re supposed to. In some cases, lead time can also refer to the length of time it’s going to take a manufacturer to build the ordered item, especially items that are custom such as power wheelchairs.
However, when you order power mobility, such as the items listed above, and the phrase “back-ordered” is used – that means there is not an estimated delivery date for the missing component(s) and the manufacturer is not able to supply an estimate shipping date. It could be six weeks; it could be six months.
In all cases, here at AAA Mobility we follow up on all open orders every Friday, double checking lead times and back-order dates on all pending orders, for all mobility equipment. That way if anything changes, not only do we know as soon as possible, but so do you!