Archive for the ‘furniture’ Category

How to Select Cost Effective, Quality, Durable Office Furniture

Saturday, January 15th, 2011

When selecting office furniture for our workplace, one of the first considerations that comes to most people’s minds is cost.  In many cases, budgets guide our design process from start to finish.  So how do you select furniture that will fit within your budget without sacrificing quality?  How do you find affordable office furniture that won’t fall apart in a year?

It is important to avoid being sucked into the trap of believing the most cost effective furniture is the least expensive.  Big sales, low prices, and short lead times can sound attractive but they can leave you with office furniture that has poor construction, a minimal or non-existent warranty, and little to no ergonomic benefits.  Office furniture will ideally last a decade or more, so its important to make the necessary investment rather than settling for a quick, cheap option.  Working with a reputable furniture dealer to order the right furniture for your needs will most times give your more value than buying retail.

Solid wood furniture is one of the most attractive and long lasting options for the office.  It can also be the most expensive option, so if you’re on a strict budget, this should be reserved for the most visible parts of your office.  Incorporate solid wood into the reception area, the offices of the most important executives (if they regularly have clients present in the office), and any other public area.  Not all of the furniture even has to be solid wood.  Solid wood guest chairs and a solid wood desk will be the most visible areas, while you can get away with laminate or veneer on the bookcases, return, and storage areas.

Laminate furniture is very durable and the manufacturing technology has improved greatly in the last several years.  This is a viable option for a large portion of most offices.  The visual look of “Wood” laminates have been greatly improved and is sometimes indistinguishable from actual wood.  Laminate desktop surface are much more durable and not easily scratched.

Talk to your designer about what you value most so they can select the best furniture for you.