On to the Year of the Tiger!

With the start of the new lunar year, it’s time to look back at the past year and take a look at 2022 and the Year of the Tiger.

Last year’s Chinese zodiac sign, the strong and persistent ox, proved to be a remarkable fit for White Horse Laboratories. The team at White Horse has always been characterized by tremendous dedication and intangible determination. In recent months, however, teamwork and mutual support have carried us through the year. Looking back now, we can be very proud of what we have accomplished. Not only in how hard we worked, but also in the certainty that we took the right steps where no path had yet been mapped out.

How to face a perfect storm

Looking back, the past year seems like a “perfect storm.” Demand for technological innovations like electric cars, as well as everyday items like laptops and monitors for extended home offices and home networks, and healthcare products, far outstripped supply. In addition, closures, power outages and in-house material shortages further depleted available capacity.

We invested in more capacity, more automation, additional workstations, and testing equipment. Even the layout of our testing lab was revised. We added an additional facility and three new offices. Like a real family, the team grew in size and cohesion. The latest round of capacity expansion seems to have finally balanced demand. Turnaround times are back to where they should be, and we can handle rush orders without having to put up with insane work hours. They are still long, but the feeling of swimming against the tide has subsided.

Eye to eye with the tiger

This year, we have set out to reduce the burden on our employees even more significantly by breaking new ground in merging technology and processes in a changing market landscape.

We expect shortages to continue to dominate the industry into the third quarter of this year, and in parts, likely into 2023. New capacity created to increase chip production will not come on line for some time, as it is often overlooked as one of the most complex and capital-intensive manufacturing processes. We also expect the regionalization of production from components to finished products to continue through 2023, as this offers many opportunities for segmentation and risk diversification.

What we see as a very healthy trend that has developed in recent months is increased communication between OEMs, their EMS and test labs. Identifying, evaluating, and determining defects and risks requires more steps than meets the eye, and certainly more direct and trusted communication. We are very grateful to our business partners and customers for always relying on this kind of collaboration with us.

As the Year of the Tiger unfolds, we will continue to advance our strategy to meet the needs of the global marketplace, which is evolving well beyond scarcity and pandemic management. Tigers are bold and adventurous, and so are our plans for this year. Furthermore, since the tiger and the horse bring with them the ideal “marriage” of traits, what should stop us this year? Here’s to a healthy, prosperous time full of enriching encounters.

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