One expense that you simply cannot ignore when starting a new business is the cost of office supplies. Office supplies are so important that some employees even buy their own favorite brands, spending an out-of-pocket average of about $90 each year, according to Staples Inc. There are a few basic supplies that are an absolute necessity if you plan to run an efficient office environment.
The average office worker goes through about 10,000 sheets of paper every year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Copy and printer paper is an absolute necessity for just about any office. Your employees will need paper to make duplicates of important documents, send faxes and print files from their computers. In addition to printer and copy paper, you also need other types of paper such as envelopes, sheets of mailing labels, notepads, legal pads and sticky notes.
Printer ink, whether it is in the form of inkjet or toner cartridges, is another essential supply for your office. The Inktec Zone America Corporation estimates that the average person spends about $600 on ink for the life of each printer. This figure may be more for an office worker or small business owner who must print and copy multiple documents on a daily basis.
Another important supply that you will need to stock in your office is writing utensils, including pens, pencils, highlighters and markers. Each employee will need an adequate supply of writing tools to sign off on documents, take notes in meetings and fill out printed forms pertaining to the business, among other uses.
Your office will not be complete without fastening tools, including staples, paper clips, binder clips and pins. These are important for office organization—without a selection of fasteners, your multi-page paperwork and files will be difficult to keep orderly. In addition to metal and plastic fasteners, tape is also an office necessity. Make sure that you have plenty of light-duty and shipping tape in the office for your mailings.
- Christopher Robbins/Digital Vision/Getty Images