Global supply chain impacts on book publishing

An update from your collection services team
January 14, 2022
As we start the New Year, we want to take a moment to thank you for your ongoing support of Sacramento Public Library and for weathering the ongoing publishing challenges with us. What publishing challenges? If you are asking that question right now, it means you have been finding your next read at the library. But, if you've noticed some delays in new items becoming available, here's why.

It’s no secret that there are ongoing global supply chain issues and staffing shortages in many industries, including book publishing and distribution, that have created a trickle-down effect for consumers. Book publishers are experiencing a shortage of materials, including paper, and a staffing shortage of book printers. Publishers are also pushing back publication dates, sometimes months, making us all wait for many anticipated titles. Our book vendors are not always able to deliver product to us in a timely manner, and are struggling to procure their own processing supplies and maintain warehouse staffing. Then there are the shipping disruptions too.
All combined, this means the library is experiencing delays in getting new materials out for you to borrow. You may also experience:
  • Materials listed in our catalog as “on order/in processing” for longer than usual
  • Titles not available at the library by the on-sale date
  • Slower moving hold lists as our re-orders for popular items take longer to arrive
  • Cancelled holds for books that we are unable to purchase or receive
We apologize for these inconveniences. It frustrates us too. We will continue to do our best to get the materials you want into your hands as soon as possible. Here’s how:
  • Maintaining strong relationships with our book vendors to ensure Sacramento Public Library receives priority fulfillment.
  • Ordering more copies of expected hot titles to avoid having to reorder additional copies later to fill hold lists.
  • Ordering titles further ahead of publication dates to ensure the fastest delivery possible.
  • Sourcing titles from a variety of vendors to maximize our delivery rates.
  • Managing our catalog records to minimize frustration.
While you wait for your favorite books to arrive, take advantage of all the wonderful collections your library has to offer: Thank you for bearing with us as our industry continues to recover from the pandemic. We are doing all we can to provide the best materials for your reading pleasure.