Maintaining office supplies need not be tedious, time-consuming or difficult. There are several steps that one can take to help maintain office supplies and equipment.
First, make a list of the office supplies that you or your organization are using and then make a list of approximately how many of these supplies are used each month. This list needs to be utilized as an inventory list. Once you've seen, on paper, your inventory requirements, you can then begin to calculate a realistic monthly budget for office supply needs.
This list can be transformed or stand alone as a checklist, where you can keep track of all your office supply needs; as each item is used, the items can be checked off so you know exactly how much of each item is left. Marking on this list when supplies need to be ordered can save hassles and the inconvenience of going without.
Second, create a standard office supply list; a list where employees can order when necessary by following the contents of the supply list. By doing this you will help to keep supply costs down and will help reduce many inquiring questions on what types of products to order because the list will be standard; eliminating the search for a needed object.
Third, make up and maintain an office supply policy for all of the employees - and then hold them accountable. This will help you maintain your budget and keep all products in an orderly and organized fashion. By assigning just one person to be responsible to log out supplies to employees, the budget can be maintained. Making fewer orders will keep costs down and be more efficient and manageable.
Fourth, approximately every two to three months review your office supplies and then check your expenses. Look at specific items and see if there are other products which can save you more money and still offer a good product. Have an employee do some comparison shopping. Use internet sources and local office supply stores for the best prices. When possible, buy in bulk and check out any discounts that might be offered.
Fifth, if your company or organization is large or expanding, it might be helpful to ask for a detailed list from each department for specific supplies such as employee personnel files and check registers.
Sixth, be sure to keep all receipts so you can deduct your office supplies. Deductions should be listed as a lump sum on IRS Form 8829. Ensure that accurate records are made of all expenses, for this will help come tax time.