Vending machine for common supply items saves time

District 5 has adapted the vending-machine concept to supply items, greatly reducing the number of interruptions created by walk-through traffic seeking items. Before the change, if an employee needed an item, he or she would go to the Supply Section, request the item, and a member of the section would go back to the storage room, find the item and bring it out.

"Now, you just walk over to the machines, scan the vending-machine card issued to all employees, and get what you need," explained District 5 innovation steward Greydon Wright. "The machines have worked really well."

The vending machines, located in the service station and available to all employees 24 hours a day, were a collaborative effort from the D5 purchasing team.

The machines stock commonly requested items, such as safety vests, WD-40, tape, batteries, hard hats, spray paint, gloves, and similar items.

"We have experienced lots of compliments on their ease of use and how quick it is to get items, as well as suggestions to what items they would like to see in them," said District 5 Senior Buyer Lora Lognhurst. She added that the vendor inventories and stocks them weekly.

Times 7 Focus: Ideally, these innovations will not live in a silo — they will be catalysts for ITD's other district offices and work areas, and inspire duplication statewide. These innovations represent time and money-saving measures, process improvements, and customer-service efficiencies that are transferrable to other districts. In that spirit, if this innovation is something you'd like to adapt to your own district or work space, and you have any questions, please contact District 5 Innovation Steward Greydon Wright at 5-3611.


Published 08-26-16