It has long been said that a grocery list can tell you much about the person who wrote it. So, what would Corporate America’s shopping list tell you about how the U.S. did business in 2020?
I think it would say: “We stayed home—but we worked hard!”
The list of Top 10 items sourced through Fairmarkit in 2020 gives you a unique picture of what procurement departments were doing this year—and on the whole, they were preparing their colleagues to work from home.
By March, many companies in the U.S. and around the world were subject to lockdown measures in a bid to protect workforces from the spreading COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic. Many employees were unable to access their offices but still needed to work. In stepped Procurement to help their colleagues set up workspaces on kitchen tables, living rooms, or converted basements—anywhere there was good WIFI connection and a reasonable amount of quiet.
No surprises, then, that the most frequently requisitioned article in Requests for Quotations (RFQs) on Fairmarkit this year was Apple’s Magic Mouse 2. Buyers across the U.S. ordered these smart handheld devices by the dozens. In fact, of the ten most frequently requested products, four of them were mouses or keyboards (or combination purchases of both). The sixth and seventh most popular items were the Apple Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad and the Apple Magic Keyboard 2, respectively. And rounding out the list was the Logitech Wireless Combo MK345 keyboard and mouse set.
While big buys can bring significant accolades, sometimes it’s the small purchases that make the most difference for your colleagues and fellow employees. This year, every item on the Top 10 Most Sourced list was some sort of computer-peripheral device. 2020 proved how important it was for procurement teams to move fast and stay tuned to their coworkers’ needs. Without the quick purchase of computer equipment during the pandemic, many staff members would’ve been unable to contribute to their teams and keep their companies going through enforced quarantines and lockdown orders.
For many remote workers, video conferences have become a core part of the workday. As such, a good pair of headphones has become crucial to keeping the focus on the meeting and not on the household chores, home-schooling, or wayward pets causing a ruckus in the other room. It’s little wonder, then, that Apple’s AirPod Pros were the third-most-popular product sourced this year. With their compact size and effective noise reduction technology, the little white buds have become a familiar sight in the ears of workmates peering out across the ether.
Naturally, computer screens were also in high demand throughout the pandemic, as the spare room replaced the cubicle—and none more so than Hewlett-Packard’s 27-inch G2 LED monitor. Crystal clear and just the right size for a home office, the unit was the fifth-most popular item on this year’s list. And for those coworkers who were a little more space-conscious, HP’s 24-inch version made the eight spot.
When home bases became workspaces and company laptops the primary business machine, docking stations arose as an essential component of the work-from-home starter kit. For people with company-issued laptops, a docking station helps provide a desktop experience without the additional cost of a larger computer. Docks also reduce the number of cables and cords, which, in turn, minimizes workspace clutter. It’s not unexpected, then, that two of these items made the 2020 Top 10 list: At number two was HP’s Thunderbolt Dock G2, and at number nine was the Targus USB-C Universal DV4K Docking Station Power.
Fairmarkit wishes you a Happy Holidays and congratulates procurement teams around the world for making it through 2020. Well done! We wish you the best for all your procurement needs in 2021—whatever they may be!