If your business has been operating remotely but you are about to reopen the office, there is a lot to consider in order to get things ready to welcome back your staff. But just because these are extraordinary times that require additional measures to help keep your staff safe, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be out of pocket. It’s worth changing your overall purchasing strategy to save money on office supplies.
We’ve put together some tips on the best ways to work smart and save money.
- Buy in bulk
The greater the quantity of supplies you buy, the better the unit price you get, so it makes sense to buy in bulk as much as possible. This is an especially smart move when it comes to products you use on a daily basis such as paper towels, hand sanitiser, face masks, cleaning products, disposable cutlery, etc.
- Negotiate split delivery
If you want to take advantage of buying in bulk but don’t have the storage space, talk to your supplier about split delivery, which allows you to schedule part deliveries over separate dates. This means you can free up space for other things, and there’s less to unpack!
- Hold stock with your supplier
Another way of taking advantage of bulk-buying cost savings is to talk to your supplier about storing products with them, even if it’s on a temporary basis to enable you to free up space in your office to help with social distancing.
- Compare brands
In the same way that supermarket and generic brands of food can be just as good as branded products, it’s a good idea to shop around for non-branded office stationery and supplies. There are cheaper options available which offer the same quality as the more popular brands, as well as greater availability.
- Save money by saving space
Create more space in the office by shredding old documents and storing archived documents more cheaply off-site. The extra space in your office can be used more smartly – for example, for providing social distancing, housing new sanitising stations or to reposition workstations.
Make sure everyone changes their default setting to print in black and white rather than colour. That way they will be less likely to accidentally print documents using the more expensive colour inkjet cartridges.
- Change utility supplier
You may well be spending less money on utilities while all your staff are working from home, but you could save even more than that by shopping around commercial utility suppliers for the best deals on water, gas and electricity.
- Instant caffeine
Having a drinks machine will help save on the time wasted waiting for the kettle to boil. A machine that dispenses coffee, tea and hot chocolate also ensures there are fewer touch points which makes it more hygienic, especially if you opt to have an antibacterial coating on the buttons. Even if you don’t, they’re easy to clean with antibacterial wipes.
- Sustainable cups
Whether you have kettles or drinks machines, you can save money by issuing staff with reusable cups, which are also much better for the environment.
- Does your corporate credit card give you rewards?
Make your credit card work for you in the form of cashback or points that you can turn into rewards. Banks such as Capital One offer a points-based reward system, whereas others like NatWest, Barclays and Santander offer a small percentage cashback on purchases.
- Digital FM tracking
Facilities management can be a headache, especially if you are managing it across multiple sites whilst working remotely. Using cloud based FM tracking software makes it a lot easier to manage your assets on one system, reducing the time and money you spend and simplifying supplier, asset management and reporting process.
- Promotional gifts
Impress clients and employees alike with practical promotional gifts that are reusable and sustainable, such as branded face masks, Antibac coated reusable water bottles or the ever-useful USB memory stick. And remember, the more you buy, the lower the unit cost. The more useful the gift, the more likely it is that your clients will use it, ensuring your logo is in sight for a long time.
- Discount codes
Everybody loves a bargain, so why not give discount codes for your suppliers to pass on to their own clients. It’s a great way to enjoy new business that’s come directly to you, win win!
- Repair rather than replace
If something in your premises is damaged – such as a cracked sink or tile, damaged furniture, or scuffed UPVC window or door – don’t automatically replace it with a new one. A specialist repair company may be able to repair the damage far more quickly and cheaply than it would be to replace it – with the added bonus that repairs are far more environmentally friendly than replacements and can be carried out quickly as typically parts won’t need to be ordered in.
15. Discount Scheme
The last five months have been a difficult period for the economy and many businesses have had to adapt to the challenges that the new ‘normal’ has presented us with. During these difficult trading times, we wanted to find a way to help our customers gain new clients and save money so we have set up a discount page to help make savings within the Quills community.
If you’d like to be included in our discount directory page and possibly gain some new clients, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm the information we will require in addition to your logo.