B2B Office Supplies and Technology Sales See Gains as Employees Return to the Office

According to Circana, formerly IRI and The NPD Group, business-to-business (B2B) sales revenue for both the office supplies and technology industries finished 2022 with growth of 8% and 10%, respectively. While each industry faced its own set of challenges throughout the pandemic as employees worked from home for an extended period, the return to offices has also created opportunities in each industry.

As of February 2023, Circana estimates that 39 million employees worked from home with the expectation that this number will continue to decline to 20 to 30 million on average, as holiday seasonality continues to settle. This is down from a peak of 88 million in August 2020. The increased number of employees returning to the office in a full-time or hybrid capacity resulted in changing demands for businesses and manufacturers alike.

“While work-from-home policies and preferences are still evolving, the impact on business needs and spending is clear and can vary by vertical sector,” said Tia Frapolli, president of Circana’s Office Supplies practice. “For manufacturers, being able to see performance and purchase trends at the vertical level across the office supplies and B2B technology industries allows for more informed decision making and the ability to identify untapped opportunities.”

To read the full press release, visit the NPD website. 

Source: NPD

Microsoft is Adding AI to Office Apps. It Could Change Everything.

Microsoft is adding artificial-intelligence capabilities across its suite of business applications, and the world may never be the same. In a web presentation on March 16, the company introduced a new service called Microsoft 365 Copilot, a natural language interface that will run across the company’s suite of productivity applications, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Teams. Microsoft has been using “copilot” as a term to describe the addition of AI capabilities to other apps—like GitHub Copilot for coders, and Dynamics 365 Copilot for enterprise applications—and with this announcement, it brings the concept to business applications.

Source: Barrons