No matter the size of your company or organization, your employees need a variety of supplies to be productive. These overhead costs are great places to look for savings, especially if you’ve been renewing contracts with the same suppliers year after year. IBISWorld research can show if you’re paying the right amount for goods and services to keep your staff efficient.
This graphic shows next year’s average forecast price change for the office management category as a whole, along with a selection of specific sub - categories of office management products and services. Click into each sub - category to see a buying guide that will get you up to speed quickly on the product or service.
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Cellular Telephone Services
General Office Supplies
Managed Print Services
Office Furniture Systems
Wireline Telephone Services
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Trends in the office management sector are seen as a barometer of the state of business growth in the United States. This is true in part because office supplies and services are known to be among the more discretionary investments made by commercial firms and municipal entities. For example, the volume of products or level of services procured shifts in line with expansionary efforts. In assessing the current and future state of the office management sector, three different, yet related, market-driving trends (substitutes, market fragmentation and profit trends) have been weighted.
- The more integral office management product and services can be substituted
- The popularity of substitutes have pressured downstream markets to limit price growth
- Some vendors are adapting by expanding their scope of service offerings or product catalog to include substitutes
Key Takeaway: Despite slow price growth for office management products and services, buyers can choose to leverage the threat of procuring viable alternatives to obtain lower prices for traditional products and services.
- Key markets within the office management sector (e.g. communication and office furniture suppliers) are becoming dominated by a handful of firms
- Concentration has risen on the back of widespread merger and acquisition activity
- While the rising level of concentration has harmed smaller firms, it has driven competition among the top firms
- Smaller firms are adapting by specializing in offering niche products and services
Key Takeaway: When dealing with top firms, buyers must pit vendors against one another or seek specialty vendors to obtain negotiation leverage. This practice will allow buyers to find a supplier that will offer a more acceptable price.
- Throughout the sector, the average vendor earns a moderate level of profit
- To further drive profit margins up, operators are increasingly investing in automation machines in services to cut down wage costs
Key Takeaway: Moderate profit margins benefit buyers by giving them some leeway to negotiate on price. That said, buyers must be sure to properly research the financial health of a potential supplier before making a purchasing decision. Otherwise, buyers risk sourcing from a financially compromised operator, which could lead to a disruption of service and loss of capital invested in the contract or purchase.
Key sector trends will continue to be favorable for buyers in the next three years. IBISWorld anticipates that prices for office management products and services will experience sluggish growth. As in recent years, substitutes will continue to be considered as viable alternatives to traditional office management products and services. In addition, the level of price competition in the sector will further strengthen; vendors are expected to offer incentives to buyers for their business as they look to steal market share away from competitors. Finally, profit margins are expected to increase in most downstream markets. This trend will afford buyers additional room to negotiate rates for office management products and services.