Office Supplies and the Sourcing Process

THE OFFICE SUPPLIES CATEGORY is one of the most universal spend areas in sourcing. And why wouldn’t it be? Everyone uses pens, pencils, paper, paperclips, envelopes, highlighters, and staples. Because office supplies are commonplace across companies and even industries, you would think that pricing would be relatively standard, and that most companies would get about the same level of pricing, but nothing could be further from the truth.

Think of it this way: Your organization has short- and long-term goals and objectives. While office supply spending may not seem like it plays a vital role in these goals, it very well can. Tactical costs like office supplies affect the bottom line and set unwritten rules about how your organization operates. Efficiency can be achieved throughout all aspects of the business plan—from what you buy and how much you pay to who controls the spend and how orders are placed.

The main focus of sourcing office supplies is to create a more efficient and streamlined process while simultaneously lowering acquisition costs and developing sustainable implementation plans to keep budgets in line. This chapter demonstrates the necessary steps involved in sourcing office supplies, which will also lead to a more practical understanding of the details of sourcing projects in general. Not only is it important that you have a clear understanding of your purchasing profile, but you also need to understand your ...

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