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Group Purchasing For Non-Profits?
October 13, 2012 12:04 PM   Subscribe

Non-profit group buying? Do it myself or use a service thats out there?

So, I have been doing development (fundraising) for a while now at Universities in my professional life and at small non-profits in my volunteer/personal life.

It has become evident that a lot of the small non-profits that I work with could really benefit from the big bulk purchasing that I do at work. For example, when I buy envelopes, I buy 200,000 at about 1.4 cents a pop. The local child advocacy group at needs 1,200 envelopes gets them for nearly three times that. So I started looking at some group purchasing sites. There seem to be a lot that are subscription based and I'm finding some questionable reviews.

What I'm asking is, has anyone worked with a group purchasing group for non-profits before? If so… any success stories or concerns? Has anyone organized their own collective bargaining groups with success or failures?

I was imagining if we didn't like an existing service that it could be as informal as me contacting some other local non-profits and coordinating purchases. Am I over simplifying this?
posted by meta x zen to Work & Money (1 answer total)
 
In 27 years of purchasing as an administrator at a nonprofit, I never found a system or service that made this worth while. Either the items I needed were not what the service offered, or, and this was the deciding factor, the value of the time involved in making the purchase through this type of service/system negated any savings.
posted by HuronBob at 12:48 PM on October 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


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