9 Basic Office Supplies Every Business Needs
by Martin Lieberman, Staples® Contributing Writer
Now that your small business is big enough for you to have an actual office, its time to celebrate! And its also time to think about the office supplies, furniture and other essentials you need to keep your business operations running as smoothly as possible.
What are those basic office supplies you need? Take a look at this list of essentials:
1. Desk Supplies
Start with the real basics. Were talking pens, tape, highlighters, paper clips, scissors, a trash can, etc. all the various things you take for granted, but that you need for getting work done. They will enable you to take notes, be creative and go about your normal daily business.
Even if you have a tablet or a powerful mobile phone, having a laptop computer or desktop makes running a business easier. Sure, you can balance your bank account and launch marketing campaigns right from the palm of your hand, but if you use any kind of proprietary software or perform more advanced tasks, youll need a computer. In addition to greater functionality, your computer can be used for storing important documents and backing up your mobile devices if you dont feel comfortable with storing all your data in the cloud. While youre at it, dont forget a printer and a wireless router to keep all your devices connected with each other and to the Internet.
3. Apps & Software
Regardless of your device, youre going to need software and/or a few apps to help you manage your business, and handle tasks like tracking customer payments or client invoices, scheduling appointments, maintaining a Web site or blog, monitoring your social media presence and doing your taxes.
Now youll need things to write and print on. Stock up on notebooks, notepads, sticky notes and paper for your printer and copier. (And make sure your printer and copier have plenty of ink and toner so your pages dont stay blank and youre never in a lurch before a major presentation.)
5. Organization Supplies
Staying organized is essential, so have a stapler and binder clips handy to keep your various documents and printouts together. Add some folders both regular file folders and the hanging kind so you dont lose important paperwork, such as personnel files or legal documents.
6. Office Furniture & Storage
Where will you sit? Where will you file away your folders? Whether you choose to completely furnish your office or just want a comfortable office chair and a functional desk, youll need office furniture (including storage pieces) to help you work more effectively and give your space a more professional feel.
7. Stationery & Mailing Supplies
When it comes time to send mail invoices, paychecks or payments, promotional offers and other documents youll need something to send it in. Stock up on envelopes (closed and window types, letter size and manila) and postage.
8. Time Tracking & Planning
The busier you get, the more important time management becomes. Even if you have a calendar on your mobile phone thats synced with your office calendar, its always good to see things visually in relation to your other goings-on. Thats why we recommend buying a calendar or planner to hang on your wall or keep on your desk for tracking all your appointments, deadlines and to-do list items.
9. Supplies for Hanging
Make your office more appealing and functional by using pushpins and thumbtacks to hang signage, photos, art, a calendar and brainstorming notes on your walls.
It's All about Building a Foundation
It doesnt matter if youre an accountant, a plumber or a florist some office supplies are used by everyone. Start with this list as your foundation and keep on growing from there.