Office Supply Package

At the start of a new project, some builders give the jobsite superintendent access to office supplies from the main office for the construction trailer…or ask the superintendent to buy the necessary supplies and then get reimbursed.

Other builders might have an account at a local office supply store, at which the superintendent can purchase these supplies and charge the purchase to the builder.

Another option is to order office supplies online and have them delivered to the construction office trailer.

The problem to avoid here is a “reinvent the wheel”…individualized approach for every new housing construction project.  The builder should have a standardized list of the minimum items needed in the field to equip and supply the field office.

A suggestion I offer here is for the main office to assemble the package of varied supplies needed…boxed-up and labeled according to a standardized list…and order the equipment and furniture…all ready for use soon after the construction trailer is delivered and set-up on the jobsite.

This approach eliminates the possibility that some superintendents will under-supply the construction trailer because of an inadequate list…or the mindset that economizing in this area will be favorably looked upon by their supervisors…that getting by with less is commendable.

Another suggestion is to assign someone from the main office who is an expert in organizing the filing system and the file cabinet…to come out to the jobsite during the construction trailer set-up phase…to get this area of field operations up and running smoothly from day one.  This should be a non-negotiable, required company activity…using the same repeat office person performing this activity…with interim feedback and project close-out evaluation to improve this important field information management function.

A minimum list of office supplies, stationary, and equipment might include:

ball point pens

mechanical pencils & lead

scratch pads 8-1/2×11

scratch pads legal size

colored highlighters

colored pencils

paper clips

correction tape

fluid white-out

push pins


transparent tape holder

transparent tape


adhesive stick-on notes

file folders

file labels

stapler & staples

architectural scale

engineering scale

drafting triangles & templates

plans holders

key rings

key box

keyed padlocks


business card holders

business cards


paper hole punch

spray paint

upside-down spray paint

trash cans & bags

paper towels

first-aid kit

fire extinguisher

water dispenser

coffee machine

copy paper standard

copy paper legal

copy paper 11×17

copy machine toner

computer laptop

11×17 printer

fax machine

land-line telephone with conference call capacity

safety books

building code books

Author: Barton Jahn

I worked in building construction as a field superintendent and project manager. I have four books published by McGraw-Hill on housing construction (1995-98) under Bart Jahn, and have eight Christian books self-published through Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). I have a bachelor of science degree in construction management from California State University Long Beach. I grew up in Southern California, was an avid surfer, and am fortunate enough to have always lived within one mile of the ocean. I discovered writing at the age of 30, and it is now one of my favorite activities. I am currently working on more books on building construction.

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