Bulk/Discount Buy Group Management
November 29, 2011 2:11 PM Subscribe
I'm a member of a few different groups that periodically put together a bulk orders from wholesalers as a way to get a discount and also to bring products to our small island community that are hard to get otherwise. I'm managing one of these groups, and am finding that as it grows the amount of time spent keeping track of everybody's orders, calculating how much everyone owes, and dividing up the order after it's been received, has been increasing with each larger order. I've incorporated spreadsheets and a mailing list into my process but it still involved a great deal of manual processing. I've started writing some scripts to help out as well, but it occurs to me that others doing this must have faced these problems as well. I've tried some googling but haven't found much information out there, so I'm wondering how the rest of you do this.
posted by Emanuel to Shopping (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Some particular questions I have: (but feel contribute anything relevant even if it doesn't fit exactly into one of these questions, since no doubt there are areas I haven't thought about)
- Are one or two people primarily responsible for keeping track of orders coming from different people at different times, or does the whole group meet to take care of the management together?
- How do you do the physical work of dividing up the order and distributing it to all the members?
- Do you use any software to help manage everything? If so, what, and how do you use it?
- If one or two members of the group do more of the work, are they compensated somehow? If so, how?
And, if you want, some background might provide helpful context:
- What, if any, are the frustrating aspects of your group?
- About how many members are in your group?
- Who do you order from?
- How often do you order?
- About how much is a typical order worth?