August 2nd, 2020
Most "in-stock” orders continue to ship the day they are received. The 2 biggest issues we continue to see (besides Covid-19) are backorders and delays in the postal service. Many vendors have experienced closures due to Covid-19, and many have had a hard time hiring enough people.
Several manufacturers have been hit particularly hard. The clipper companies have all seen a huge increase in demand while their US factories were closed due to Covid-19 in the spring. Oster, Andis, and Wahl are all experiencing a huge increase in demand while trying to catch up and keep their employees safe. Other companies like Pet-Ag and Fortiflex that almost never have a backorder, are having a hard time manufacturing enough products to cover what we have on order. We all hate backorders. Our buyers are trying to stock up where they can and allow longer lead times with vendors to minimize shortages.
The second issue is a huge increase in the time the postal service is taking to deliver packages. This seems to have impacted about 15% of our “best way” shipments. 85% are delivered quickly with no issue. The other 15% may take up to 3 weeks. When we reached out to UPS to ask what was suddenly causing hundreds of delays, they explained that the postal service is struggling with numerous challenges to their system. Some of these challenges are closures of mail centers due to Covid-19, civil unrest and burned buildings, and fewer domestic flights resulting in more mail having to travel by ground vs air from one place to the other. If you would like to speed up delivery of your package, UPS Ground is $4.99 and we have not seen any disruptions.
On a personal note, my family is doing well. My son has been working in the warehouse and has adjusted well to his new routine of 4 insulin shots a day. He has a new kitten he is training to be a diabetic alert cat. Whenever his blood sugar is low, the cat gets her favorite treat. My niece who is 27 and one of the healthiest people I know, has had a rough bout with Covid-19 this past week. She seems to be doing better and we are all so thankful.
I hope you are doing well. We are all so thankful for your business. Having a job you love during this time feels like such a blessing. Please feel free to reach out anytime.
April 28th, 2020
We have all had quite the adventure this Spring. Most of the Jeffers team has been truly blessed with good health, and we have not had anyone diagnosed with coronavirus onsite. I love all the sweet emails and letters from customers. This morning, I had a TV show call me and ask what was the #1 thing that stood out about Jeffers? A unique product? Unique customers? My answer was, I have the most amazing co-workers in the world. They are what makes Jeffers truly special. They would all have jobs without me, but Jeffers wouldn’t be Jeffers without them.
Update on Jeffers:
We are still shipping most in stock orders within 1-3 days. Last week 20% went out the same day, 17% one day later and 26% were shipped more than 3 days later, but that number includes backorders and vaccines that were held until the following Monday. Backorders continue to be a challenge. We are making an effort everyday to reach out to vendors and check on their status. We are also working on systems to answer your questions as quickly as possible. My “no cell-phone rule at the dinner table” as been temporarily suspended at our house so I can respond quickly when an operator has a question. Our specialists are all monitoring the questions the operators have when they are not pulling orders in the warehouse. I love suggestions, and feel free to email me with any suggestions or questions.
Update on Ruth Jeffers:
It has been a tougher week personally. Last week, My son’s 11-year-old cat, who had breast cancer removed a few months ago, and a clear X-ray last month, took a rapid turn for the worse, and we lost Luigi last Tuesday. We rushed her to the vet, and her little body was filled with tumors, she was barely breathing. I am thankful she was well enough to be by my son’s side for the first month of his Type 1 diabetic diagnosis. For anyone not familiar with it, life becomes an emotional roller coaster as your blood sugar starts to stabilize. Luigi spent hours each day sitting by Alex on the back porch while he did his school work, and snuggling with him at night. Pets leave such big paw prints on our hearts.
Update on friends with coronavirus:
One friend is back home after weeks in the ICU. My other friend, Steve Vandenberg was doing much better. He was being moved to a step down unit, and Sunday night suffered a heart attack. He was a great mentor in my life and known as “The father of Ivomec”. My heart is truly broken. He was a great friend to so many in the animal health world and a real pioneer, working on both Ivomec and Eprinex. Please keep Steve’s family and friends in your prayers. RIP my sweet friend.
P.S. Please join me in continuing to pray for Jeffers, our elected leaders and our country.
April 9, 2020
Thank you so much for so many sweet words of encouragement and all of the love you have shared with both myself and our good folks in the call center and warehouse. Jeffers is currently shipping most orders within 3 days. There are two challenges in getting orders out the same day. The first is keeping team members 6 feet apart. The second is many vendors are shipping to us slowly, as well. If your order is urgent or if you have concerns about the delay in shipment, feel free to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or a message on Facebook. You are welcome to call 1-800-JEFFERS as well, but you may experience a little longer wait than normal. Jeffers is located in a small town in south Alabama. Most operators are working from home at this point and internet speeds tend to be a little slower. We have purchased hot spots for team members that did not have the internet at home.
Many of you have asked about my son, Alex. He is doing well and is back to attending online classes. I am still working from home. My heart goes out to anyone who has had to be hospitalized during this time. Our 14 days have passed since he was released from the hospital, and it is such a relief to know we were not exposed to COVID-19 while in the hospital. It is so scary to have a kid diagnosed with an autoimmune disease in the middle of such a scary time.
My two friends are both still in ICU. One of those friends sold Ivomec for many years. I have read the reports of testing the effects of Ivermectin on the coronavirus. I have hoped and prayed that might be the answer for him. He is such a great storyteller, and I can just see him smiling and laughing about it one day.
Please feel free to reach out to me personally if I can be of any assistance. I am so blessed to have such an amazing team that is doing an incredible job without me. I see them every day at 2:00 for our team leaders meeting, but I can’t wait to see them in person and thank everyone who has stepped up and made things go while I take care of Alex and work from home.
March 27, 2020
A lot of things have changed in the world since I wrote my first letter outlining Jeffers procedures for safety during this Pandemic. I hope you and your families are well. A week ago, I didn’t know anyone personally who had the virus. I now have two personal friends who are fighting for their lives, one of those friends is responsible for suggesting my 14-year-old daughter’s name Lili.
We are continuing to do whatever we can to keep our warehouse workers healthy. Everyone is giving 100% to get the work out and following strict protocols during work and at home. We have been delayed occasionally in getting every order out the same day. We have seen an increase in sales, but for now the warehouse team has chosen to work extra hours, and have help from the marketing team to ship orders versus someone new that may not have been following the same strict guidelines for the last two weeks.
Jeffers truly has the most amazing group of team leaders in the world. Last week my 19-year-old son ended up, completely unexpectedly, in our local hospital with Type 1 Diabetes. As many of you know Type 1 is an auto-immune disease. Since a common cold could return him to the hospital at this point our family has been isolating at home, but the team hasn’t missed a beat with me working from home. Our employees are truly amazing. As scary as it is to be diagnosed with an auto-immune disease during a pandemic, I thank God continuously he was home for Spring Break and not in NYC. I continue to pray for our family, our employees, our city, our country, and our elected leaders. If there is anything I can do during this time my personal email is below. All of our specialists are working from home and answering questions all day. May God bless you and keep you safe during this unprecedented time in our history.
March 19, 2020
Knowing that Jeffers plays an essential part in our nation’s ability to take care of animals, we started practicing social distancing, frequent hand washing, disinfecting, and requiring anyone who had respiratory symptoms to stay home for 14 days until those symptoms are cleared. These practices were implemented on March 10th.
Many of you rely on Jeffers to make sure your animals are healthy and vaccinated from various diseases. We take this responsibility extremely seriously. Our warehouse is working multiple shifts to allow everyone to stay 6 feet apart.
If you have trouble contacting anyone by phone, live chat is also available.
For local customers, you can place an order on the phone and pick up in the store. Just text us when you arrive in the parking lot at 334-326-3371.
Feel free to reach out if you have any concerns.