At some time in your career, you will be responsible for maintaining and
ordering supplies. Plentiful supplies ensure that all workers have what they
need to perform a task and that your shop remains versatile and fully capable.
Monitor your shop for waste and abuses in supply use. Curb the tendency to
loan or give supplies away. Correct abuses, minimize waste, and use limited
shelf-life items before the expiration date. The amount of wasted supplies
should not exceed 2 percent of the total supplies used on a job.
Inventory the supplies on hand regularly. Information from the job log on
completed job requests, current job requests, and upcoming special projects
combined with prospective deployments and exercises will show trends in
quantity. Common sense gleaned from past experience will guide your
decisions to order the quantities required to maintain adequate supply levels.
When purchasing new equipment, project the future requirements of your
shop and what technology offers to fill those needs. Consider the equipment
life expectancy and service contracts offered by the manufacturer. Increased
quality, ease of performance, and increased production should be the effects
Limitations in purchasing consumables are often related to storage space.
Some supplies are temperature and/or time sensitive. Use the first in/first out
system of storing. Clearly mark the contents and receipt date on the package
before storing it away.
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