Kiwi parents are "fuming" and "furious" after a back-to-school stationery service failed to deliver.
Orders have been delayed, leaving children to start their year without any books or pens.
- Back to school costs limiting Kiwi kids' future success - children's charity
- Budgeting service inundated with requests for help over holiday period
- Parents hit in the pocket by the rising cost of school uniforms
OfficeMax's online ordering system allows parents to search for their child's school and class, order the list of supplies they need, then get these delivered.
On its website it says delivery will be within five-eight working days, although some workbook titles may take seven-10 business days.
But parents have been leaving scathing reviews online, accusing the company of broken promises and failed deliveries.
"I can't believe you take longer than a week to send out a school stationery order! It's been eight days since I placed the order, and it still hasn't even left your DC [distribution centre]!!!" one person wrote on its Facebook page.
"Your online service is the worst I have ever experienced. I have had packages arrive from overseas quicker than that. No communication, apology, explanation! Not good enough Office Max!"
"My kids started and have had two days with no stationery, not cool when one is autistic and has been melting down something chronic!" another complained.
OfficeMax says its distribution centre has experienced a "series of technical issues" during its busy period, which has caused a backlog of orders.
"Fulfilling these as soon as possible has been the absolute priority for the business. OfficeMax is working around the clock to rectify this unexpected situation driven by exceptionally high and unusually late demand, and apologises for any inconvenience to those affected," a spokesperson told Newshub.
"A very high number of back-to-school orders are received and processed by OfficeMax each year. The number of orders received during the final few weeks of the school holidays were much higher than usual, resulting in delays in distribution.
"Usually there are more orders earlier in January with parents preparing for the new school year in advance. This time a very large number were received in the last two weeks which was inconsistent with our forecast, possibly due to parents extending their summer holidays due to the warmer weather.
"OfficeMax assures its customers that an extensive review of this issue will take place once we have fulfilled the remaining orders, to ensure we avoid this happening in the future."