Inside Info: Managing an Awesome Office Pantry

Considering the number of hours that we spend in the office every day, it is safe to say our office has become a second home to many. And no home is comfortable without the need of having a well-equipped pantry.

4 tips on managing your office pantry

1. Work with a budget

With great pantry, comes greater need to invest on stocking up your pantry. A small company size of 1-10 people would averagely spend about RM400 per month (RM100 per week) on pantry items.

Here’s an idea on some basic pantry essentials you can get with RM400:

  • Milo Softpack 2kg x 1
  • Maggi Curry/Chicken Hot Cup – 6 X 58g x 3
  • Gardenia Classic Jumbo Sandwich Bread x 4
  • Farm Fresh Pure Fresh Milk 2 Litres x 8
  • Nescafe Original Blend & Brew Premix Coffee x 2
  • OSK Japanese Green Tea 50 x 2g x 1
  • Hup Seng Cream Crackers 700g x 1
  • Kellogg’s Cornflakes Jumbo Cereal – 500gm x 2
  • Nestle Honey Stars Cereal – 500gm x 2
  • Skippy Chunky Peanut Butter – 500gm x 1
  • Munchy’s Oat Krunch Nutty Chocolate with Hazelnut x 2
  • Banana (Cavendish) 6kg
  • Red Apple x 10 pieces
  • Navel Oranges x 10 pieces

If you don’t have a budget as this moment, we suggest you propose one during your ‘makan’ sessions with your office managers or any other who are involved in this decision making process.

2. Understand what your co-workers need

Scenario A: After long stressful hours, you will hear your marketing manager murmur words to their lonely pet fighting fish, “Tired…need something to munch…I wish there were chips…yasss”. That’s when you recall that you just stored up few bags of Lay’s Sour Cream & Onion Potato Chips and 100 Plus isotonic drinks today.

Scenario B: Your co-worker, Eugene came back to office all drenched in sweat after meeting a client in the afternoon. He could’t resume back to work, as he needed to stand under the air-cond for a while to cool his body down.

Help Eugene counter off the heat with some good-old ice-cream ‘potong’, mango pudding or chilled lemon tea packet drinks.

Scenario C: It has been raining heavily for the past couple of days, and your good-old superhero cardigan / hoodie you’ve put on and your Dance-Pop upbeat playlist you’ve been listening to, did not do enough justice.

Set fire to the rain by stocking up on instant hot & spicy cup noodles or instant soup. Best to have? Everyone gets mini marshmallows in a cup of hot chocolate! Now that’s the way to make everyone’s work happy.

3. Evaluate consumption pattern

It is important to review what items in your office pantry that are well-received by your fellow co-workers (In our office, Yakult cultured drink is our Kryptonite). This should give you a heads up to order more quantities in the next round of restocking.

Do take note of any items that are least favorable (stock level depletes rather sluggishly because your office buddies got bored having to eat that same biscuit /cereal over the course of the year, or perhaps items that not even moving at all; sitting on your pantry rack while collecting dust). With this, you can consider to switch to a different brand or flavor of that particular product.

4. Maintain your organization scheme
In our office, pantry items are arranged by group, size and height. This looks appealing visually and everyone knows where the items are supposed to be.Here are some common groupings:

  • Bags of snack foods
  • Bottles of sauces & dressings
  • Jars of jam & spreads
  • Boxes of grains (oats, cereal, pasta)

Put the items you use most regularly in the rack space between your shoulders and knees. It’s easier to reach and easier to put back after use.
Most importantly, throw away expired goods! Access each item one-by-one and ask yourself this question: “Has this expired?” If your answer is ‘yes’, throw it out! You wouldn’t want anyone to call in sick the next day!

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