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Until recent years, many portable restroom operators didn’t spend much time thinking about consumable products. When your paper towel or glove stock ran low, you simply ordered more. However, supply chain issues and price hikes have put PROs in a tough spot. Simply put, procuring everyday items shouldn’t be this difficult or expensive.
We’ve heard your concerns and want to learn more. Where do you buy durable goods, and what drives your purchasing decisions? Check out the questions below and message us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact JohnTalk on Facebook, Twitter/X, or LinkedIn.
How Do You Manage Portable Restroom Consumables?
Everyday goods run the gamut from supplies like toilet paper and paper towels to safety gear like gloves and high-vis apparel. Some PROs track every detail in inventory management tools, whereas others pick up some coffee or batteries when the need arises. How do you monitor consumable goods inventory?
Think about the following everyday items. Do you count stock levels and replace them regularly or automatically? Can you pull up a product’s history to see price fluctuations? Or, do you buy them as needed with minimal tracking?
- Paper towels
- Toilet paper
- Office supplies, like printer ink
- High-vis apparel
- Miscellaneous safety gear
- Bottled water and coffee
- Light bulbs
Where Do You Buy Durable Products?
We want to know what your go-to place is for buying consumable goods. Working with product suppliers has its advantages. They know your company and provide personal service. But many things changed during the pandemic. Some PROs switched to big-box stores or online-only businesses to source durable items. In 2024, where do you buy consumables?
Are You Using One Vendor or Multiple?
Using multiple vendors can provide a bit more stability for frequently out-of-stock items. However, managing multiple suppliers versus one vendor is also more challenging.
How many vendors do you use when considering your durable goods inventory? Does your answer differ based on the category? For instance, we’ve heard from several PROs who prefer shopping locally for office and maintenance supplies but buy safety gear online.
What Factors Affect Your Purchasing Decisions?
We know it can be challenging to find vendors who check off all the boxes, and getting the best service from suppliers is vital. But what does great service mean to you? The lowest price? Readily available items and short shipping timeframes? All of the above?
When purchasing durable goods, how important are the following factors:
- Cost: How much weight do you put on product prices? Does the lowest cost win every time, or do other factors (like delivery deadlines) matter?
- Convenience: Do you prefer to order online or over the phone? Do you look at product details on a website or use automatic ordering tools?
- Location: Does the option of local pick-up appeal to you?
- Shipping and delivery: How do shipping prices and delivery timeframes affect your decision?
- Environmental impact: Do you consider sustainable options when buying everyday goods?
Share Your Perspective on Buying Consumable Goods
Managing your durable product inventory isn’t glamorous. But you should have convenient and affordable options. Think about your process and vendors, then send answers to these questions to email@example.com or contact JohnTalk on Facebook, Twitter/X, or LinkedIn.
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