Case Histories (Real-World Solutions)
Sustainable Products for Less
Partnering with Staples allowed The University of Colorado
to increase sustainability initiatives and create healthy and
productive learning environments.
The University of Colorado
maintains a strong reputation
as an environmental leader. As
part of its sustainability initiatives, the
university wanted to take advantage of
environmentally friendly facilities solutions
— supporting the university’s broad
cleaning needs, eliminating the reliance
on harsh chemicals and streamlining its
facilities procurement processes.
“We knew we could be smarter about
how we manage our facilities operations —
and be more green,” says Sandy Hicks, assistant
vice president and chief procurement
officer with the University of Colorado.
“The key was to find the right partner with
the right competencies to help us build an
enterprise-wide program with standardized
products and processes.” The university issued
a Request for Proposal (RFP) with a cross-campus
committee evaluating submissions
from nine vendors based on several criteria.
Staples Advantage received the highest
score among the group, moving the company
into the final evaluation phase along
with three other vendors. The University of
Colorado then conducted a blind cleaning
test on the Boulder campus, using
glass, multipurpose, floor and disinfectant
solutions from each of the vendors. Again,
Staples was the front-runner in the group.
Based on Staples’ impressive showing,
the University of Colorado awarded Staples
Advantage a three-year contract for its
Staples integrated with the university’s
existing e-procurement platform —
M@rketplace — allowing users to easily
search for and buy pre-approved facilities
products. The Staples team worked closely
with the university’s Boulder distribution
center to create ordering best practices,
determining each campus’ cleaning needs
and recommended inventory.
As a result of partnering with Staples,
the University of Colorado has extended
its sustainability initiatives, rolling out environmentally
friendly cleaning practices
across all of its locations. The university is
actively promoting a healthy and productive
learning environment, while reducing
its environmental impact.
This article originally appeared in the May 2016 issue of College Planning & Management.