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Office Life

10 Ways to Cut Costs Around the Office

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Jeff Gapinski

Photo of a piggy bank next to stacks of quarters with the caption "10 ways to cut costs around the office"

As an Office Manager, there may be multiple reasons why you’re looking to cut costs around the office. Perhaps you’re looking to set aside money for other initiatives like company events, professional development, and additional office perks—or maybe you were asked by upper management to improve cash flow. 

Whatever the reason may be, there are many ways to trim office expenditures without sacrificing quality and comfort—it may just take a bit of creativity, research, and planning. 

Not only will the tips highlighted in this blog post save your business money in the long run, but they will also help your office become more sustainable. Win-win! 

Let’s take a look at 10 different ways you can efficiently cut costs around the office.

1. Purchase office snacks in bulk

Office snacks are always a hit amongst employees. Unfortunately, these costs can add up over time, especially if you’re paying the full retail price and frequently restocking your snack cabinets. 

Though large boxes of single-serving chips and cookies are convenient, they could be costing you more money than you think (and tons of wrapper waste!). 

One way to save money on office snacks is to buy products that come in single, large containers. Encourage employees to portion out their own servings using cups or small bowls. Not only is this a cheaper alternative to traditional single-serve packaging, but you’ll also be reducing your plastic use.

2. Create a designated office supply center to encourage sharing

Take a moment to look around your office. Do you notice multiple staplers or rolls of packing tape collecting dust or taking up space in a supply cabinet? 

Think about how often your employees use certain office supplies—staplers, hole punches, scissors, labels, etc—and start a shared space where employees can access common office supplies. 

It may sound elementary at first (remember fighting over the fruity-scented markers in fourth grade?), but trust that your employees will respect this new initiative.

Try placing a sign by the shared supplies reminding people to return anything they borrow once they are done using them. If you’re including single-use products like paper clips or sticky notes, remind employees to only take what they need.

3. Switch to LED light bulbs

When LED lights were first introduced back in the 1960s, they were insanely inexpensive (think $200 per bulb). Thanks to improvements in technology, LED bulbs are now considered cheaper than traditional incandescent bulbs. 

Take a stroll around your office space and note areas that currently use either fluorescent or incandescent lighting. If you work in a large office or in a shared commercial space, you may need to work with lighting professionals to make the switch. But trust us, it will absolutely be worth the effort considering LED lights are 75% more energy efficient than incandescent lights.

4. Encourage employees to go digital to save on printing costs

It’s estimated that the average full-time employee costs a company $725 a year just on printing habits. Of course, this is only an average and will not apply to everyone in your company, considering everyone’s specific printing needs. 

Regardless of how much you currently spend on ink, paper, and printer maintenance, cutting down on printing costs is as simple as encouraging employees to go digital. Urge workers to only print what they absolutely need and stick to black and white ink when possible.

5. Switch to a smart water cooler for your beverage needs

If you spend a lot of time and money restocking your company fridge with cases of bottled water and flavored seltzer, you’ll be thrilled to know we offer a cost-saving (and environmentally-friendly) solution.

By switching to a smart water cooler like Bevi, you will be saving roughly 30,000 bottles and cans a year, along with saving on beverage costs. 

On average, a glass of water from the Bevi machine costs roughly $0.20 per 12 oz glass—less than half of what you’d pay for bottled, flavored, and sparkling water.

In addition to being better for the planet, your employees can make custom drinks with over 12 flavors made from natural extracts and no artificial ingredients, enjoy water enhanced with Caffeine or Immunity (a vitamin blend), and rally around the real-time counter that shows how many bottles your office is saving.

6. Open the windows if the weather allows for it

It’s estimated that air conditioners account for one-fifth of the total electricity used in buildings around the planet. When you consider the other objects that also use electricity such as machinery, electronics, and kitchen appliances—that’s a large piece of the pie. 

If you can open a few windows to bring in fresh air when it’s nice outside, you may be able to get your office air conditioner a break. Plus, welcoming in fresh air is shown to improve mental health.

7. Purchase secondhand office furniture

Purchasing brand-new office furniture can get expensive very quickly, with the average office chair costing between $150-$300. 

Instead of buying your office furniture and decor from a known retailer, take a look at local secondhand stores or online marketplaces for great deals on gently used furniture. It may take some research before you find a bargain, but once you do, you’ll be on your way to cutting down office expenses in no time!

8. Switch to surge protectors and turn them off when leaving the office for the day

When packing up to leave for the day, it can be easy to forget to turn off or unplug your tech. Leaving technology plugged in overnight (and especially over the weekend) can cause your energy bill to skyrocket. 

To save both time and money, use surge protectors to power up your most used technology around the office. That way, all your employees need to do is flip the power switch before leaving the office, as opposed to unplugging every power cord.

9. Buy office supplies in bulk

Even in the digital age, there will almost always be a need for office supplies such as paper, envelopes, file folders, labels, and tape. 

Look for office supply companies that offer discounts when you buy wholesale, such as Staples or Amazon.com. 

Before buying wholesale, it doesn’t hurt to take inventory of supplies you already have to avoid overspending. If you have an overabundance of paper clips or sticky notes sitting in your supply cabinet, you can probably scratch those from your list.

10. Install motion-sensored lights

Listen, forgetting to turn off the lights happens to the best of us, especially after a long day at work. With many other important things occurring during the work day, switching off the office lights may be at the bottom of your to-do list by the time you pack up for the evening. 

That’s why another great way to cut costs is by investing in motion-sensor lights. In addition to being economical, they also remove some responsibility from the last employee to leave for the day. Those employees will seriously thank you!

Ready to start saving?

Cutting costs around the office doesn’t need to be a daunting task, especially if you only choose to implement a few of these tips at a time. 

Not only does reducing your office expenses improve your business’s cash flow, but you will also be doing the planet a huge favor by trimming your energy bill and eliminating excessive waste. 

Do you have other cost-saving tips you’d like to share? Send them our way on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn!

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Jeff Gapinski

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