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Administrative Services: Remote Workstation Supplies and Purchasing

Administrative Services supports the MIT Libraries' mission and goals in the areas of Budget & Financial, Facilities & Operations, Personnel and Staff Services.


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Approved List of Furniture and Peripherals

See a complete list of allowable furnishings and workstation productivity items here.

Technology Setup Requests

Need technology items, like cables, headsets, keyboards, or monitors?

Visit the MIT Libraries' Help Center, click on "Desktop Support," and click on "Technology Basics," then choose "Technology Basics" to create your request.

Staff Member Responsibilities

Read this before requesting any workstation productivity items or remote supply orders. When making a request, you will be asked to confirm that you have read these guidelines and agree to comply. Please read full policy linked below.

  • In order to submit a request for remote workstation productivity items, staff need to initiate a conversation with their manager about their needs.
  • All staff members are responsible for confirming receipt of delivered items and submitting all packing slips that they receive within one week of item receipt.
  • Failure to confirm receipt or submit packing slips will result in a suspension of future orders.
  • Furniture, equipment, and other workstation items purchased or reimbursed by MIT are MIT property and must be either purchased at a depreciated rate or returned if a staff member leaves the Libraries. This is a rule set by central procurement which we must adhere to.

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Remote Workstation Productivity Process Overview

Overview of Process

  1. Discuss the likelihood of an approved hybrid work scenario with your supervisor
  2. If positive, assess your on-campus and remote workstation needs using the processes below
  3. Your supervisor will need to approve your requests 
  4. ADLIB and ITS teams will place your orders; please be patient

Please use the instructions below to begin acquiring furniture and/or equipment to set up your work locations appropriately.  This process is not meant to acquire new items for your workstations beyond the basics. If you have a new need for furniture or technology for your workstation, please discuss that request with your supervisor.

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  • If you then do not have appropriate furniture to work on at your remote workstation, please follow these instructions 
    • Supervisors and staff have a conversation to discuss individual staff needs. 
    • Staff submit requests via google form. Spending cap is $500 (one-time only amount), and approved items for purchase can be found here.
    • Members of ADLIB and approvers shepherd requests through the approval process
    • Once approved, ADLIB team members will place approved orders and communicate order confirmation and tracking information to recipients via email.
  • Please email if you are seeking a small furniture item not on the list.


  • Due to world-wide logistics challenges, you may wait longer than two months for delivery of your furniture
  • When items are received, you are required to send your packing slip to the adlib team member assigned to your order.

Returning furniture to campus

Staff are responsible for either purchasing MIT-bought items or returning items to campus upon their departure. Please coordinate with your supervisor, and return your items during regularly scheduled business hours whenever possible. MIT Libraries will not arrange shipping or pay for costs associated with returning items to campus. Staff are not required to return fully depreciated furniture, see "Purchasing items" to calculate depreciation.

Purchasing items

If you wish to purchase your MIT-supplied item upon your departure, please work with your administrative assistant to do so

Furniture is set to depreciate fully after 4 years. Thus, the value of items will be determined by an annual decrease in price of 25% based on the original cost. (e.g., a chair priced at $400 will cost $300 to purchase after 1 year, $200 after 2, $100 after 3, and $0 after 4.)

  • Cost of initial shipping will not be factored into depreciation costs
  • Staff do not need to return fully depreciated items

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Technology Equipment

Tech Equipment

  • Equipment standards for work mirror those outlined in the Tech Basics process from last spring. Please see this list of standard items if you have questions. 
  • If you and your supervisor agree that you should have two functional workspaces for hybrid work, determine if you need additional equipment to have the basic set up in each location. Then, 
    • Submit your equipment need through Jira Service Desk 
      • Navigate to “Desktop Support” > “Technology Basics” > “Technology Basics”
    • After completing the form, your manager will be notified via email of the request.
      • Managers will approve or discuss the request with you
    • ITS will place the order after the manager has approved the request. 

Q. How do I let someone know that I returned my items to work and am no longer hosting them in my remote space?

A. Use the Jira tech form to notify ITS for location changes for technology equipment, and contact your local administrative assistant for updates on furniture whereabouts.

Importantly, please keep in mind the following issues:

  • There is likely to be a high volume of requests at this time, and our vendors may be overwhelmed.
  • Logistics in many industries are still delayed, and turnaround is slow.
  • We are re-establishing on-site workflows and services, and staff capacity may be limited.


  • Requests will be processed on a first come, first served basis. Please be patient as the team fulfills all of the requests.
  • Technology requests must meet ITS standards and are subject to ITS approval. ITS will work with the staff member to find an item that does meet our standards in the event the original request falls outside of our approved list.
  • You must upload a scan of your shipping document or a photo of your purchase to your Jira ticket within one week of receipt.
  • Staff are required to either return or purchase equipment to campus upon their departure.

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Supplies Request and Approval Process

To submit a request for supplies to be sent to you at home, please use this form. We will only be able to purchase items that are allowed by MIT's central procurement office. Our FAQ has a list of some common allowable and unallowable items. Please note that there is a $50 cap for each staff member on supply requests every fiscal year.

You must also read and agree to the Staff Member Responsibilities listed on this page before submitting a request.

Supplies for campus locations don't count against the $50 at-home supply cap for individuals.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: I have a question about reimbursements. Where should I direct it?

A: Please email


Q: What items are allowed/disallowed in terms of supplies? Can I buy a space heater/ear plugs etc?

A: Items that fall under a typical office supply umbrella, such as paper, pens, staplers, etc. can be purchased and shipped to staff at home. Items such as space heaters, ear plugs, and humidifiers cannot be purchased for individual staff and shipped to or brought home. If you have questions about other allowed/disallowed items, please email


Q: Why not? Why are there such specific restrictions on these purchases when I can get a space heater on campus?

A: As a recipient of federal research funding, MIT must procure goods and services in compliance with the Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) Uniform Guidance.  As sound guidance and practice, VPF has adopted this framework as its purchasing policy for all purchases made at the Institute, regardless of funding source.

A key principle is to abstain from purchasing items for personal use.  When we are on campus we can easily substantiate the business purpose of expenditures, such as furniture, peripherals, and supplies.  Being in remote workspaces, that are individual’s personal living spaces, the line between purchasing items for personal use versus work is much harder to differentiate, and are therefore under greater scrutiny.


Q: How are we differentiating between personal supply caps and on-campus supply orders?

A: Supplies for campus locations don't count against the $50 at-home supply cap for individuals.


Q: Why do I have to send in my packing slip?

A: Packing slips are required by MIT/Procurement as proof of delivery. The team ordering items and reconciling charges need this confirmation of receipt to complete reconciliations in a timely manner. 


Q: Now that I’ve sent in the slip, can I recycle it? Does this need to go back to MIT?

A: Please retain all packing slips. The paper copy is considered the copy of record according to MIT audit guidelines. When you return to campus, please ensure your name is somewhere on the slip and provide them to your Administrative Assistant for retention.


Q: I don’t have a smartphone. What are alternate ways to send in packing slips?

A: Please contact for guidance.


Q: My item did not have a packing slip. What do I do?

A: Please take clear pictures of items received as visual documentation of receipt and email to the ADLIB member who ordered your item.


Q: Where did the $50 limit come from for supply purchases? What do I do if I need something more expensive to do my job like toner cartridges?

A: The $50 limit per calendar year should cover most general supply needs in our current unusual circumstances. If you need something that exceeds the $50.00 limit, please submit your request to your supervisor (cc: for review.


Q: What form do I use to request technology purchases? Is this part of this process/the $50 cap?

A: Technology needed for your work should be requested using Jira Service Desk (navigate to “Desktop Support” > “Technology Basics” > “Technology Basics” to submit your request. These items will not be counted toward your $50 cap.


Q: If I order furniture/equipment through this process, does MIT own it?

A: Yes. MIT will own any materials purchased with MIT funds and these will need to be returned to campus or purchased at some point in the future. 


Q: What do returns on technology/furniture to MIT look like? Who needs to know about/receive returned materials?

A: To return technology equipment, enter a ticket using Jira Service Desk (navigate to “Desktop Support” > “General question or request”). It may be possible to purchase out of warranty technology equipment instead of returning it; if you’d like to inquire about purchasing technology equipment, enter a ticket using Jira Service Desk (navigate to “Desktop Support” > “Purchases” > “Purchase decommissioned equipment”). Please connect with your supervisor and administrative assistant on returning or purchasing furniture. MIT Libraries will not pay for or arrange for shipping of furniture.


Q: What is the deadline for purchasing furniture? For supplies? For technology? 

A: Requests will be fulfilled on an ongoing basis. 


Q: How long will it take for my order to be placed once I fill out the Google form?

A: Completion time depends on approvals and administrative team bandwidth, as well as item availability with vendors and shipping speeds. Desk and chair purchases will be placed via a batch process with central procurement. We’ll send shipping information for all orders when we have it.


Q: I have a question that isn’t covered here. Where do I go to get that answered?

A: You can email


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