Spend Management in the Bathroom

In the past week, there's been a few good stories circulating around the Internet which offer both business and consumer strategies for cutting costs (and going green) in the bathroom. In the first case one company has decided to go to market with, well, toilet paper you can recycle (i.e, a cloth rag designed for the purpose). According to their marketing propaganda, "Using cloth toilet wipes actually has many advantages. For one, it's a lot more comfortable and soft on your most delicate body parts. It's also more economical, uses less paper ... And cloth wipes can be used wet without any of the sopping disintegration that regular toilet paper is prone to." I think I'll pass. But I would consider paying to use the loo at 35,000 feet. Which is precisely what I might have to do aboard Ryanair which, according to MSNBC, is considering charging "passengers to use toilets on planes". Coming from the airline that "has always made a significant portion of its revenue from charging passengers fees for extra services," maybe this is not so far flushed an idea after all (perhaps Ryanair should partner and sell the 'cloth toilet wipes' too). Maybe companies should consider a similar model. After all, many offices charge for coffee. Why not extend the paradigm to its logical conclusion? We are in a recession after all. And procurement should focus on revenue generation as much as reducing costs ...

- Jason Busch

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