Do you feel pressure to reduce costs and save time ordering everyday essentials? Whether you’re in charge of buying supplies for a four-person office or a fortune 500 company, your goal is usually the same: to help reduce overall supply costs for your business.

While you may be tempted to shop around and buy supplies from multiple vendors, that strategy usually doesn’t offer overall cost savings or a good use of your time. You'll actually end up spending more by spending excess time shopping around for very minimal cost savings.

If you want to really help your company, you may want to consider vendor consolidation, which can help you save time and money in the long run.

At Egyptian Workspace Partners, we've walked hundreds of clients through this process. From gathering invoices and performing a business product audit, our goal is to help you reduce your overall costs and save you time ordering supplies.

In this article, we'll help you understand what a business product audit is and how your current invoices can help your company save time and money so you can focus on more important everyday tasks.

What is a Business Product Audit?

So, what exactly is a business product audit, and how can it help your company save time and money?

When we conduct a business product audit, current invoices are a vital part of the process. We'll take your last three months of invoices and comb through them to highlight areas where we can help you reduce costs.

By performing a business product audit, we'll be able to see the products you're using and the products you're not using, so we can price everything correctly and show you all the cost savings available to your organization.

Ultimately, a business product can help you:

  • Reduce supply costs
  • Increase your soft cost savings
  • Streamline your ordering process
  • Identify private label products available to your organization
  • Consolidate the number of vendors you order from

Why are Invoices So Important?

What Invoices Do We Need for a Proper Price Comparison?

At the end of the day, our goal is to help you save money on the products you use on a regular basis.

For example, let's say you use blue file folders, but the company next door uses red folders. Instead of pricing red folders because they're readily available, we want to give you the best price possible on the blue folders because those are the folders that your organization actually uses.

To perform a proper price comparison, we need invoices from all your suppliers you’re looking to consolidate.

Even if you buy breakroom supplies from a wholesale club, office supplies from a big box store and janitorial products from a local vendor, it helps you if we can review everything you’re buying.

Some of the invoices we want to see include:

  • Office supplies from Staples, Office Depot or a local supplier
  • Janitorial products from Industrial Soap, Cintas, HP Supply or a local supplier
  • Coffee services from Ronnoco, Aramark or Walmart
  • Breakroom supplies from Sam's, Walmart or a local supplier
  • Any additional products from Amazon

What Do Invoices Show Us?

We use invoices to look at the number of items you're buying and the product categories you're not buying, as well as brands to see if there are any private label options that can help you lower costs without sacrificing quality.

Invoices also help us identify the number of vendors you're using. We'll use this information to reduce your soft costs, the number of websites you order from and the number of checks your accounting department has to write, so you can spend less time shopping and more time completing more important tasks.

We'll also use invoices to find cheaper cost-per-use alternatives to products you regularly use, like chemical dilution systems in place of ready-to-use chemicals or hard-wound towel systems instead of multi-fold paper towels.

What if I Don't Want to Share My Invoices?

Some customers don't want to share their invoices because they don't want us to see the prices they're currently paying. Although we understand this, invoices are extremely important because we need to see the item number, description and quantity for every single product you buy.

If you're worried about sharing your invoices with us, you’re more than welcome to mark out the prices. Still, we'll have a good idea of what you're paying since most prices are readily available online and we have programs that show us what everyone is currently charging.

However, if you decide to leave the prices, we’ll be able to identify more ways to help you reduce your costs. The more information you give us, the more savings we'll be able to provide.

Can I Send a List of Items Instead of an Invoice?

You may be wondering, why can't I just send over a list of the items we use instead? Unfortunately, if you only send us a list of items and no additional information, we won't be able to see item numbers, quantities or product descriptions.

Is a Business Product Audit Worth Your Time?

Here at Egyptian, we know how time-consuming the vendor consolidation process is because we've been through it ourselves hundreds of times. We're constantly auditing our vendors and trying to consolidate them so that we can pass our savings along to you.

We spend a lot of time on your business product audit to help identify ways to reduce your costs and bring value to your organization. After all, you’ll have to spend a lot of time gathering and printing invoices to send over, and we don’t want to waste your time.

By giving us at least three months of invoices from your current vendors, we'll able to help you reduce spending and save time ordering. We'll also be able to help you:

  • Streamline your ordering process
  • Identify private label products available to you
  • Consolidate the number of vendors you order from
  • Increase your soft cost savings

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Andrew Stephens

Written by Andrew Stephens