Purchasing office furniture doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task. If you do your homework ahead of time and plan carefully for what you need, your purchasing experience will go much smoother. Since business owners are always looking for ways to save both time and money, here are a few tips that will help you when you are in the market for office furniture:
Create a floorplan/furniture layout. Don’t just rush out to the local office supply store and buy the first desk, chair or workstation that you see on sale. You need to evaluate your office furniture needs and ask your employees for their input as well. Ask employees important questions like how much filing space they need, how important is privacy, do they use all of their current workspace? Keep in mind how much space you have available for the employees you currently have and factor in any plans you may have for hiring additional employees. Most office furniture dealers offer free space planning. It may be helpful to have a project manager draw up your space and give you ideas how to best use it. Your research and knowledge of your employees needs will help you assist the project manager in coming up with the best furniture layout for your office’s needs.
Shop around. Make sure you are comparing apples to apples. A Steelcase cubicle is more expensive than a budget office cubicle because it is made better and will ultimately last longer. Begin your search by examining websites and comparing pricing and product. Some websites like www.NewLifeOffice.com will actually give you layout ideas and pricing. Remember, there are many office furniture dealers out there so make sure you find someone who has been around for a while and has a good reputation.
Keep comfort in mind. In your planning stage, you surveyed the employees who will be using the new office furniture, so keep their comfort in mind as you shop. Make sure you select chair that are adjustable as well as ergonomic. Even better, ask your office furniture dealer if you can test drive a chair for a few days before placing your order. Let employees “vote” on the chair that is the best fit. Make sure that any workstations you are considering have enough leg room for the people who will be sitting there all day.
Ask colleagues for referrals. You can check with your local chamber of commerce for referrals for office furniture dealers. Ask past customers if they are satisfied with their purchases or if they are sorry they went in that direction. The more information you have, the easier it will be to make an informed decision about where to buy your office furniture.
Consider shipping costs when you buy online. Although it may appear that you are saving a bundle by purchasing online, you may be shocked when you’re hit with a huge shipping bill. Look for companies like New Life Office who offer free shipping on all orders.
Look for refurbished office cubicles. Refurbished office cubicles often look as good as new with rates that run at 50% of typical showroom-new office furniture. They also have a quicker turnaround time. Refurbished cubicles are not only economical, they also help to reduce solid waste from going into the landfill.
Ask/Look for additional discounts. Nowadays, most office furniture companies can be found on twitter or facebook. Check for additional discounts that may be offered on these social media sites as well as online newsletters.
Make sure you know what you are getting for your money, and you will feel better about the whole process of buying office furniture. By doing your homework, you can save your business both time and money.