Staples catalog in cyBUY features preapproved promotional items

A new catalog in cyBUY, the university's online purchasing system, will give campus units a simple and cost-effective option for purchasing promotional items. Think mugs, drawstring bags, pens, portable phone chargers, lanyards and the like. The Staples catalog in cyBUY Marketplace, found under Workday's procurement icon, launched Jan. 5 and features about 40 common items departments and programs might give away to students, employees or visitors.

"This is something we've wanted to do for a while: Help groups on campus acquire the common promotional items at a lower cost with faster delivery and fewer administrative requirements," said procurement director Cory Harms.

Preapproved = faster

Display of Staples catalog promotional items

Procurement services maintains a small display of the preapproved items in the Staples catalog so Iowa Staters can assess the quality before they order. COVID precautions currently require an appointment to visit the office in the Administrative Services Building; email to schedule an appointment.

The convenience and speed lie in eliminating the normal design and product approval process, which can take a few days to a few weeks. Trademark licensing (TL) director Leesha Arunsiripate Zimmerman, university marketing director Carole Custer and a procurement team approved all products in the catalog for quality and color (red or white). They also preapproved use of the university wordmark and college marks on the products.

"Everything in that system is preapproved so it's as simple as placing an order," Zimmerman said. "We think this is going to be an easy system for the university community to use."

She said marks for campus departments and smaller units likely will be added over time.

Harms said the catalog of preapproved items will evolve as shoppers use it.

"Buyers will tell us, based on standard orders and custom requests, what items are most popular and where we need to expand what's offered," he said.

He also noted Staples' capacity to keep a finished inventory of high-demand ISU items on hand for immediate shipping from its fulfilment center in Orange City. That could mean orders arriving in days, not weeks. Sales volume will determine what makes that list, too.

Custom orders remain an option

Harms emphasized the cyBUY Staples catalog doesn't limit purchasing options. It expedites requests for popular items. Campus units that want a product or color not in the Staples catalog may continue to use any of the TL-approved vendors. Or they may submit a custom request through cyBUY for a product from Staples' larger collection of promotional items. However, either of these options will require design approval from Zimmerman's office.

The lineup of preapproved ISU items in the Staples catalog does not include any clothing. Harms said the options for quantities of a clothing item are the same as custom orders: Use one of the university's hundreds of licensed vendors or request a custom order from Staples through cyBUY.

The Staples catalog in cyBUY Marketplace will feature promotional items only. Office Depot remains the only approved vendor for office supplies.

Catalog training

Procurement staff are leading a 30-minute virtual orientation to the new Staples catalog. Upcoming sessions include Jan. 19 (3 p.m.) and Jan. 28 (9 a.m.) via Webex. Register for cyBUY Staples Promotional Products Store Orientation in Learn@ISU under procurement services.