Ways to save on office supplies

When push comes to shove, the goal of any business is to make as much profit as you can while minimizing expenses. Sure, you’ve probably looked into all kinds of ways to do so, but have you ever considered that your office could be full of expenses waiting to be chopped?

No, relax, we’re not talking about laying off your co-workers or completing eliminating your Electronic Medical Records department. We’re talking about your office supplies and what you pay for them. Here’s a few ways you can cut your office supply expenses without turning your office into a prison.

Go generic

If you’re not already doing this in the office, you should be. While you want to show your co-workers that the office should be a comfortable environment, the fact is that you do not need the best brands of coffee, paper towels, or soap, among other office products. Pick out the cheapest possible option when it comes to these items, and chances are your co-workers either won’t notice the difference or won’t mind the difference.

In the bathroom

We do not, I repeat, do not, recommend skimping on toilet paper, as that will only leave your entire office unhappy. That is one area where remaining with a quality product will be beneficial to the office. However, when it comes to drying your hands, an electric dryer will be more inexpensive and less wasteful than constantly restocking your paper towel supply. Yes, the cost is much greater up front, so it can be a daunting switch, but in the long run it will pay off for your company.

Energy-efficient lighting

If you haven’t realized the benefits of energy-efficient lighting by now, you’re only costing yourself and your company a ton of money. Energy-efficient light bulbs last for much, much longer than traditional incandescent light bulbs while also saving energy and providing more light. Also, energy-efficient lighting should help your air conditioning as well, since incandescent bulbs give off much more heat.

Build a relationship with your supplier

As with anything in business, the key to success is building a relationship that benefits both parties. One way to do that is to explore rewards programs offered by a supplier, as even the smallest discount or reward will help your company do business with your supplier.

Remember, to the office supply companies, you’re the customer they’re looking for. Don’t be afraid to drive a hard bargain with them in order to save off of your own company’s bottom line, especially when it comes to larger or more frequent orders. As a reliable customer, chances are they’ll be willing to move on the price, at least a little bit.

As you can see, there are plenty of ways to buy smarter for your office that can lower your expenses while maintaining the same quality, or even improving it in some cases, of your supplies.

July 22, 2011