The Comeback Kids of the Lab Supply Marketplace: How Suppliers Are Bouncing Back

This decade has been heavy on the curve balls. Despite the most careful business planning, no one could anticipate the global pandemic that snarled our lives and our supply chains. Add to that an expected war in Ukraine which made recovery even more of a herculean task. There is, however, a feel-good update to this story. Lab supplier performance data, such as lead times, transit times, and billing cycles, tell a tale of resilience and recovery.

Note on this article’s data source:
As the leading lab supply marketplace, ZAGENO serves as the Amazon of the life sciences industry, covering 5,300+ brands and 40 million+ different product SKUs. The breadth and depth of products offered provides ZAGENO with unique insights into best practices and changing market conditions, which can empower R&D to make informed lab supply purchases that enable both resource optimization and scientific choice.

Lab supplier performance trends, 2022 Q2 – 2023 Q1

1. Lead times: Backorders have trended down

KEY TRENDS: Leading up to 2022 Q2, the lab supply industry wrestled with pandemic-related international supply chain issues, as well as the war in Ukraine and other complicating factors. Chaotic supply chains, massive backorder volumes, extended lead times, raw material sourcing difficulties, and transit issues all affected suppliers’ ability to provide the goods needed to run experiments.

However, since the peak backorder times seen in 2022 Q2, the average time between order and ship has fallen by 46% in the last year.

Chart showing that the average time between order and ship fell 46% in the last year

Biotechs and pharma lab supply purchasers should expect low backorder rates and strong lead times from suppliers, as seen by ZAGENO in the supplier landscape.


2. Transit times: Carrier delays have also trended down

KEY TRENDS: Carriers experienced similar struggles to suppliers during COVID and beyond. Caused by driver shortages, truck shortages, and other obstacles, carrier delays impacted biotech and pharma significantly.

Carriers typically lag suppliers in times of both difficulty and recovery. So, as suppliers adjusted to new demand structures and began to address ship and lead times, carriers were also able to adjust. Trailing suppliers’ recovery, average time between order and ship fell 10% in the last year.

Chart showing average time between order and ship falling 10% last year

As seen by ZAGENO’s data, carrier performance began to rapidly recover after hitting a low point in 2022 Q4 and continues to improve.



3. Billing cycles: Invoicing has also improved

KEY TRENDS: Supply chain issues also adversely affect the billing cycle. With suppliers unable to bill until goods are shipped, protracted backorder and lead times trickle down to negatively impact the billing cycle.

Per ZAGENO data, invoice lateness statistics peaked right on schedule in 2022 Q3, following the peaks of backorders and carrier delays. Since then, billing cycles have seen massive improvement, with the average time between ship and invoice falling by 55% in the past year.

Chart showing average time between ship and invoice fell 55% in the last yer

As seen by ZAGENO’s data, carrier performance began to rapidly recover after hitting a low point in 2022 Q4 and continues to improve.


Supplier performance: Data tells a story of recovery

ZAGENO’s data tells the story of recovery, as supplier performance continues to transition from a period of tremendous supply chain disruption and unseen demand.

  • KEY TRENDS: Post-pandemic, demand has softened. Suppliers have figured out how to adjust strategy and return to or even improve upon historical performance levels.
  • LOOKING FORWARD: The scientific community should expect orders to ship increasingly faster, more reliably, and with a shorter billing cycle.

Operating a lab supply marketplace enables ZAGENO to produce this first-of-its-kind analysis for the life sciences industry, with more insightful trend data to follow, such as supplier pricing and market share trends.

Did you know you and your purchasing teams could also start shopping for lab supplies on the ZAGENO marketplace? Contact us to see ZAGENO in action, visit us at

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