Frequently Asked Questions on Office Supplies

1. What office supplies will no longer by funded by the University?

The following items will not be available for purchase through Staples Advantage:

  • CASE PAPER (cases of paper for ONLY letter, 3-hole letter, legal & ledger sizes): Email directmail@smu.edu with order details: size/type of paper, quantity, delivery location, org#.
  • COMPUTERS & COMPUTER EQUIPMENT: Please contact your departmental technology support personnel or financial officer for guidance or email techsales@smu.edu for computer equipment requests.
  • FURNITURE & CASE GOODS: For all non-construction-related furniture purchases contact Chanda Arnold at 8-4647, for recommendations.
  • MEDICINE: Over-the-counter medications (i.e. Advil, Ibuprofen, etc.) are no longer allowed to be purchased through Staples Advantage or any other sources.
  • PHONES & PHONE EQUIPMENT: Please call the OIT Help Desk at 8-HELP or email help@smu.edu with any phone equipment requests.
  • PRINTER INKS & TONER CARTRIDGES: Please follow the instructions on the tag on your printer by emailing ImageNet@smu.edu with the following information for toner needs: contact name, printer model, printer location (building and room), org number to charge and tag number on the printer (if it exists)
  • PRINTERS & FAX MACHINES: Please contact your departmental technology support personnel or financial officer for guidance or email techsales@smu.edu for printer or fax machine requests.

Office supplies purchased through other suppliers will not be reimbursed by SMU.

2. What items can I purchase on Staples Advantage?

Items on Staples Advantage are separated into 4 categories and include office supplies outside of the 7 categories listed above:

CORE ITEMS – Core items have deeply discounted contract pricing. Please select core items as often as possible since they are the most cost effective.

NON-CORE ITEMS – These have discounted pricing that is 5% less than items on the staples.com site.  Non-core items are an option if the product you need isn’t on the core list.

HARD-SUB ITEMS – Hard-sub items have an automatic substituted item that can be purchased in place of the item that was searched for.  For example, you can buy a box of markers, but only a specific type of marker. Hard-sub items cannot be purchased.

BLOCKED ITEMS – Blocked items cannot be purchased through Staples Advantage.  The University has established other avenues for purchasing these items.  You will see a pop-up message for blocked items with instructions on how these items should be purchased.

3. Who do I contact with specific questions about office supply ordering?

 You can contact the FO or AFO for your department/unit. The list can be found here.

4. What is the turnaround for orders from Staples?

Orders placed by Authorized Users before 3pm will be delivered the following day. Be sure to check with your Authorized User for their ordering schedule.

5. How much longer can purchases from Office Depot be made?

Beginning April 1, Staples is SMU’s official office supplies vendor and no more purchases should be made from Office Depot. If an employee makes a purchase at Office Depot on or after April 1, the purchase will not be approved and they will need to reimburse the university.


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