Partnering key to efficient production in 2021

Stairways Partnering key to efficient production in 2021

Tight timber supply conditions pose both challenges – and significant opportunities – for the year ahead, Stairways Midlands bosses are predicting.
Throughout 2020, the raw material supply chain has been beset by new hurdles, most significantly those coming as a result of pandemic-related issues and sea-changes in market dynamics.

Stairways Midlands director Neil Stevens believes the key to making the most of the situation is even closer partnership working for both suppliers and customers, to help forge ahead where unforeseen restrictions and a fluid regulation space are the new normal.

Neil said: “I know everyone has heard this a thousand times, but what we have all faced in 2020 has been unprecedented. No one could have predicted this, no matter how well-developed business continuity plans were.

“We have learned a lot though. It has helped us all review our processes, work smarter with customers and suppliers – and invest further in our staff. This is the blueprint for future working.
“We must all work more closely with all links in the supply chain to help avoid significant delays and price fluctuations.

“It helps mitigate major supply issues and is a no-brainer when you stop to think about it – which we have had plenty of time to do this year.”

Stairways Midlands remains a significant player in the construction industry, serving a range of accounts for nationwide builders, as well as a significant number of smaller and bespoke companies.

Working in closer partnership with stakeholders helps support the company order bank, ensures facilities are large enough to “stockpile” for pipeline orders and helps safeguard against the challenges an exit from the EU will undoubtedly throw up in the coming months.

Neil added: “We simply don’t yet know how imports will be affected and what changes we will see to haulage costs.

“We would urge customers – and potential customers – to start conversations with us sooner rather than later. This can help both them and us with purchasing strategies to avoid supply issues and unbudgeted cost inflation.

“Materials through this year have been hit by things like a surge in people, confined to their homes, undertaking DIY projects. There is no way we could have predicted this a year ago.
“We also faced fierce competition with other European countries, and the USA, seeking structural timber, something which impacted our traditionally well-supplied timber sector in the UK.

“Like it or not, the new normal is longer lead times, which we can manage, but need to be aware of what is coming down the track.

“Demand for our products remains high and the construction sector has rebounded strongly, but to keep it buoyant in the coming year, we must continue to work more closely, to the benefit of all of us.”


Author: Stairways

Stairways, founded in 1989, has grown to become one of the UK’s largest manufacturers of carpentry and joinery products. Stairways now boast three state-of-art facilities that offer over 85,000 sq ft production capacity. Stairways goal is to raise their profile and brand awareness to become known throughout the industry as the UK’s leading staircase and door solution provider.

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As a highly reputable firm within the industry, Stairways are dedicated to meeting their client’s product and application requirements. All materials used are manufactured to the highest quality and meet the relevant standards achieving ISO9001, FSC®, and various product certifications, whilst their staircases and door solutions are manufactured with compliance to UK building regulations & legislative standards in mind. Using the knowledge, passion, and experience acquired across all team members over the past thirty years, Stairways aim to continue to be the best in what they do.


Stairways are continuously looking for opportunities to improve and expand their service offering; this includes the investment in new machinery to further enhance and innovate the manufacturing process, with the aim to shorten lead times and increase overall in-house capacity. The changes Stairways employ are always focused upon improving the customer experience, to ensure their process remains as efficient as possible from start to finish.


Privately owned and managed since it was founded in 1989, Stairways has grown to become one of the UK’s largest manufacturers of carpentry and joinery products. Starting as a small staircase manufacturer, Stairways now boast three state-of-art facilities that offer over 85,000 sq ft of bespoke and mass production capacity.