The corrugated box variety offered bywww.SheridanSystems.com and others, can be placed in company or small office kitchens and break rooms. When employees take their breaks, they can choose one of the snacks from your assortment and put the minimum donation amount in the box.
The term “honor box” comes from the fact that you are leaving both the snacks, as well as the donations in an unsecured environment. Anyone can take the candy or the money. You’ll have to monitor each location to determine if you want to continue delivering to them, but in general, most people are pretty honest and generous. In a study,[i] typical results showed that payments averaged about 90-95% of the suggested amount. Whether that average would increase when the honor box is done as a charity fundraiser has not been statistically determined.
Another version of the honor box is a clear acrylic candy dispenser that has a donation box fitted on top. This is usually designed for the bags of small candy samples or mints that you see in most stores. These are sometimes placed in the same areas recommended in the write-up in the Donation Boxessection of this book. These are more costly than the corrugated cardboard honor boxes. You can see samples of this type of honor box atwww.CoolPlastic.com.
Consider how perishable each product might be. If you’re going to do donuts and bagels, those items have to be replaced daily, so you might only want to deliver them on Friday’s. Candy tends to last much longer. Check the expiration dates on each product, if available.
Ideas to Consider:
Best locations are usually in the company break areas and small office kitchens. Other areas might be union halls and association meeting places, as well as libraries on a profit-split basis. Some of the larger corporations already have vending machines, and they may not be willing to put a competing box nearby. A compromise location or selection of items that are unique from the ones sold by the for-profit vending routes may be worked out to everyone’s satisfaction.
Best places to obtain low-cost candy bars and snacks are going to be Wal-Mart, Costco and Sam’s Club. However, if you watch sales at local drugstore chains, especially after Halloween, you’ll see some extraordinary buys. You might also be able to get some of the candy donated, especially if this is a short-term project.
If you live near a manufacturer of these snack items, see if you can work out a direct purchase deal. At the very least, you can ask for some donated products.
As with the donation boxes, you can set up a monthly revenue stream along with people who can manage the routes for you. Ideally, you’ll have many friends and supporters who work in some of these target companies. Perhaps you can persuade them to manage the boxes and money on your behalf.