To Our Clients, Supplier/Partners, Colleagues, and Industry Friends:
Here’s an update on what The PMG Family is doing to ensure continued and uninterrupted support for your direct marketing programs during the ongoing pandemic.
- We continue to operate remotely with a limited number of team members working out of PMG’s offices on a rotating, voluntary basis.
- All of our client work is managed by teams, so if we do have folks go out sick, we have cross-trained teammates. Several very-senior team members who currently work part-time are willing and ready to increase their hours if we have extensive absences.
- All data processing, merge-purge, and list fulfillment systems are accessible by our teams through secure connections from anywhere, and all work proceeds on schedule.
- Our core production supplier base of approximately 30 is dispersed throughout the country, so we can shift work if needed. We define core as tried and true, very loyal partners who will not walk away from us in a crisis, even a long-term one like this pandemic.
- Our larger production supplier group of about 100 is spread nationwide (but often more expensive or specialized) and continues to operate, in some cases with reduced workforces due to social distancing protocols or staff availability.
- We are finding that the pandemic is having a bigger impact on our work lately, with Covid-19 cases on the rise at various production facilities, reducing staff availability and causing delays and more errors. Production facility staff members are under stress and stretched thin, after eight months of pandemic-related pressures at work and at home.
- We strongly recommend that our clients build more time into their project schedules, given the risk of unforeseen delays within any stage of production. Several production partners can no longer accommodate a “day for a day” schedule shifts due to tight schedules at their plants. For example, an art file that is one day late could mean a four-day delay in a mail date. Some suppliers are no longer guaranteeing mail dates.
- Because we manage postal logistics in-house and use multiple commingle and drop ship partners, we are able to shift the mail as needed. All operations are running smoothly.
- Mail delivery delays in the fall were sporadic and we were seeing at worst one to two days delay. This was mostly due to the fall mailing season and the General Election. Covid-19 outbreaks at presort and postal facilities slowed down some processing. Stimulus package unemployment benefits and competition for labor created hiring challenges industry-wide. Now that the political mail has tapered off we expect delivery times to remain consistent.
- PMG recently conducted a client survey to determine if our service levels are meeting client expectations as we continue to operate remotely. We are pleased to report that overall, our clients are very satisfied with our service and work product. However, we continue to look for ways to improve our communications and processes, and for ways to adapt to our clients’ needs as the pandemic progresses.
In sum, PMG continues to provide ongoing support for your direct marketing and fundraising programs, with operations running smoothly. We continue to closely monitor our production partners, postal logistics operations, and the US postal system and are well-prepared for any contingencies that may arise in the weeks and months ahead.
If you have any specific questions about our services and business continuity plan, please reach out directly to Chip Heartfield, Chief Operating Officer.
We will keep you updated on any new developments as we navigate this evolving situation together. Take care, stay safe, and thank you for your partnership.
The PMG Family