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With more and more companies going paperless these days, office supplies and printing paper seem outdated. Yet, in the era of everything digital, companies still buy them and use them every day.
Office supplies are a necessity, but if you’re not careful, they can affect your budget and productivity. For example, if you do most of your work via the internet, you may not need a sophisticated phone system or tons of mailing supplies.
Similarly, if you sell physical goods and work with customers in person, you don’t need complicated computer software to run things. It’s about taking inventory, prioritizing, and asking your employees what they need.
Check out this list of office supplies and equipment you should have in your workplace from day one.
1. Computers and Internet Connection
No matter what industry you’re in, you need a reliable internet connection and computers for the digital section of your business. If you get most or all of your work done on a computer, you need a high-performing machine that can handle all the software, tasks, and documents.
Besides computers, you’ll also need additional equipment like keyboards, headphones, computer mouses, external hard drives, surge protectors, monitors, and wireless routers.
2. Printer and Scanner
Printers and scanners are some of the most widely used small business supplies. Even though companies make efforts to go paperless, sometimes, you just need to scan or print a contract, report, or make copies of important documents.
Don’t forget extra printing paper, ink, and toner so you don’t have to rush to the store if the office runs out. These supplies are costly, so have a policy in place about the use of the printer and only print documents that are absolutely necessary.
A shredder is another essential item for your office supplies list, especially if you deal with sensitive information that needs to be destroyed.
Companies are responsible for protecting this valuable data from getting into the wrong hands. Shredders are a must for whenever you print or write down a client’s sensitive information for short-term use but won’t need it in the future.
The biggest chunk of your office supplies budget will go on small stationery items. Although they’re the least expensive, people go through them quickly, lose them often, or take more than they need.
The most common office supplies you’ll need are pens, pencils, erasers, post-it notes, notebooks, folders, staplers, binders, markers, correction tape, highlighters, and anything else that your employees need.
5. Chairs and Desks
Chairs and desks are the focal point of an office and can affect employee productivity levels, both visually and mentally. Low-quality pieces can be uncomfortable to work in, especially if the employee has to sit most of the day. They’re also not durable, so you’d need to replace them often and make the employee get used to a new model.
These essential items are an investment in both your employee’s happiness and your budget. Go for high-quality computer desk pieces that are ergonomic and adapt to the human body to make working pleasurable and pain-free.
You can always get quality Eames chairs for style and decor purposes to bring a mid-century modern feel to your office.
6. Business Phone System
Your office should always be open and available for clients, so a phone system is a must if you want to stay connected. Internet and email are great communication tools, but when clients need an instant reply, you need to have a system in place.
Think about the features you want for your business. For example, you’ll need an automated attendant that directs callers to the right extension, Computer Telephone Integration (CTI), call hold and music on hold, handsets and desk sets, proper wiring, and configuration.
7. Collaboration Tools
Collaboration tools are basic office supplies for companies that do a lot of meetings or teamwork. You need an online whiteboarding tool to present your ideas, a bulletin board to post updates or reminders, a presentation projector for important company-wide meetings, a phone conferencing system for when you talk to clients from around the world, and calendars and planners to keep track of time and tasks.
8. Office Furniture
Aside from desks and chairs, you need additional office furniture like sofas, armchairs, bean bags, shelves, kitchen elements, room dividers, and conference room furniture. The type and amount of furniture depend on the square footage, but these are the essentials to make the space functional.
If you’re not sure how to make the most of the space, hire an interior designer that’ll help you create a pleasant, productive place to work. This can also save you money on unnecessary furniture pieces that could clutter the place.
9. Mail Supplies
If sending mail is a regular part of your workday, you need to add mailing items to your office supplies checklist. This includes envelopes, promo materials, scales, postage software, mailing labels, packing tape, stamps, and bubble wrap.
Even if you send the occasional flyer or product sample to customers or clients, you need to have these basic mailing supplies at hand.
10. Kitchen Supplies
For many, coffee is the ultimate productivity tool and the first thing they reach for in the morning. Make sure your office has a kitchen area where people can grab a coffee, snacks, water, and fresh fruit to keep them focused and healthy.
For the coffee section, you’ll need a coffee maker, cups and mugs, sugar and sweeteners, creamer or milk, tea, an electric kettle, spoons, and a few bags of quality coffee. For snacking, you’ll need plates, forks and knives, a microwave, a refrigerator, napkins, and drinking glasses.
This Is the Ultimate List of Office Supplies!
When you spend over 8 hours in your office every day, it starts feeling like a second home. Your workspace should be bright, comfortable, and equipped with everything you need to get the job done.
This detailed list of office supplies will help you turn your office into a result-oriented hub of creativity, productivity, and positive energy.
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