Are you nervous about opening a new office or looking to upgrade your current office furniture? Well, it's perfectly natural to feel anxious about undertaking something so fun yet overwhelming. There's much more to consider when buying office furniture than when acquiring computing equipment and other office supplies.
Coming up with an effective company furniture policy can help you avoid buyer's remorse. Such a plan can help your organization factor in suppliers, repairs, maintenance; without forgetting insurance policies and furniture disposal. It also goes without saying that your employees' comfort, aesthetics, and office space optimization are key factors to consider.
It's more about having a long-term mindset when buying office furniture. Today, we'll look at some of the people's common mistakes when crafting such policies and purchasing new furniture. So, grab a pad and a pen – By the time you're done reading this, you will be ready to avoid a severe case of buyer's remorse!
Being Too Dependent On Second-Hand Sources
Antique furniture comes across as retro or rustic. It can give your office appearance an edgy yet modern office design if well executed. However, there are too many factors to consider for flawless execution.
Most people source vintage office furniture from auctions, office liquidations, and other rummage sales. Thrift stores are also another popular hunting ground. The price might be low, and the material of superior quality. However, the furniture might require restoration, which comes at an additional cost over the buying price – Not to mention the time factor.
This might end up costing you more than buying new furniture in the long run. You also don’t get a warranty on parts and repair services like you would with brand new office furniture. You will not be able to return the furniture for exchange if it does not suit your office needs or if something comes undone. Again, with new furniture, you're guaranteed warranties, and most offer return policies if they do not suit your office needs.
Placing Aesthetics and Cost over Quality
An office that looks good inspires a positive and welcoming feeling in your employees, clients, and anyone that visits your office. It can also make your employees look forward to another workday at the office, providing a boost in both productivity and morale. But looks should not outweigh the comfort of your employees.
A chair that looks good but inflicts pain on the backs and necks of your employees will only cost you a loss in productivity and probably cause your employees injuries. Aesthetics are essential, but so is comfort. It would be best if you had furniture that would still be comfortable after hours of sitting down. Weigh both options carefully to develop the right mix for your office space and employee comfort.
Not Addressing Your Employees' Ergonomic Concerns
The shape and height of chairs can affect the comfort and productivity of your employees. What might work for one employee might not suit the other, with differences in size and shape, choice of chairs should come to play – Or at least some adjustable ergonomic office chairs!
Chairs that are not ergonomically correct will cause unnecessary movements and awkward working positions. These chairs do not consider the height and weight of the user, which will lead to muscular injuries in most cases.
Opting for ergonomic chairs will address these concerns, providing various height and weight adjustments for individual employee needs. You might also want to consider adjustable desks that will suit employees' tasks at any given time, whether sitting or standing.
Addressing ergonomic concerns in your workspace can go a long way in improving your productivity and overall employee well-being. Consider a study where you consult your employees on their ergonomic concerns.
Sourcing from Unreliable Dealers
Online shopping has become the norm, where you can make all purchases comfortably anywhere and anytime. Customers get various options, free shipping, easy product comparisons, offers, discounts, and flexible return policies.
The problem is you may not always get what’s promised in online ads. You also don’t get to appraise the product before paying like you would when shopping at local stores. There’s also a rise in what people call end-of-line vendors. These e-commerce businesses specialize in re-selling returned stock from Amazon and other major platforms.
We're not trying to villainize such business practitioners. But, it does raise questions like, - Why did the original buyer return the furniture? Can you be sure of its quality? Who will fulfill my warranty terms?
Reviews on the sites can help sift through such concerns. So, taking your time to go through the research phase may help you close in on online shopping sites that provide the best quality products from reputable sources before taking the plunge.
Choosing Non-Portable Furniture
Non-portable furniture can have its perks. For one, fewer moveable parts result in a lower likelihood of damage. Such installations can minimize their footprint and result in a generous amount of walking or storage space. It also provides uniform aesthetics to a space. But at the same time, it may affect the flexibility and comfort of your employees while switching from one task to the next. This can be a source of major ergonomic concern to your employees in the long run.
You would be better off investing in adjustable desks that will adjust to the individual’s needs, whether sitting or working while standing. An ergonomic chair or desk that is both portable to allow movement from one space to the next and adjustable to both height and weight is the modern tool for any office space. Go for furniture with easy-rolling casters to facilitate convenience in a change of location.
They also offer an aesthetic feel with the right mix for your office space comfort, and lest we forget –they are very pleasing to the eye!
Not Insuring Your Furniture
Accidents and malicious acts that damage office furniture often occur when you least expect them! The cumulative effects could waste valuable man-hours and set you back financially –If you lack a contingency plan or a comprehensive insurance cover for your office furniture.
Investing in furniture should also include insurance policies to mitigate recovery in case of loss caused by fire, theft, and damage. Having insurance keeps you at ease to run your business, knowing you're covered in case of such scenarios.
In some cases, it is a requirement to ensure your furniture, mainly if a third party funds your company, like a bank through an overdraft facility or its products or services are on a credit basis from suppliers.
Mixing & Matching Random Pieces of Furniture
Mismatched furniture can make your office look like a cluttered and chaotic mess, giving out a vibe of confusion and frustration. This could harm the overall reception from your customers and the atmosphere for the employees.
It is common practice to source your furniture from one dealer to get uniformity across the office space. As much as possible, try to get all your furniture from one source to prevent a mixed and mismatched state in your office space.
Buying from a single source can give you discounts, free delivery of the furniture, after-sale services like installation, subsidized repair costs, and warranties. They could also help you choose ergonomic furniture to suit your employees’ well-being.
Consider Office Space
Your furniture installation is dependent on your office space. It should be the first factor to consider before going through all the research and product reviews or walking into any dealership. Getting the right fit for a suitable space should be paramount.
Take the proper measurements to fit your space to avoid spending tons of money on the wrong furniture and risking additional costs on return deliveries. You could also be unfortunate to buy from a store that doesn't have return policies or warranties and get forced to resize the furniture or spend additional money to get the right fit.
Buyer’s remorse is the dread that comes when you buy things on impulse. This is especially true when purchasing high-ticket items or bulky goods like office furniture. After all, it’s an investment into your staff's long-term comfort and operational flexibility.
A sure-fire way of avoiding such dread is making furniture acquisitions a consultative process. If you’re shifting your operations to a new office, consider what you already have and what you’ll need to make the move. You can also consult your employees on what works for them, what doesn't, and how to improve the current setup.
In all this, remember to go for design trends that are ever-green. That way, your office won’t look outdated after a short period.
Leaving out Physical Checks
As a buyer, it's highly beneficial to approach furniture acquisition as a serious investment. You should avoid relying so much on the beautiful images plastered all over online sites and visit these dealerships to get a feel of the fabric and test the chairs and desks to determine comfort. Also, remember to carry your office space measurements.
This will go a long way in ensuring that you get what you need, value for your money, and without the hassle of going back and forth in case of the wrong piece, which will also involve additional costs.
To Wrap It Up
FOMO or the fear of missing out is a significant reason people always struggle to keep up with trends. This may apply to some people who constantly shop for new office furniture. But, it's not the primary motivation as switching up or upgrading worn-out furniture can save you thousands of dollars every year.
Think about it along these lines –If your employees are comfortable, they'll be more productive and motivated. Ergonomic furniture also ensures they endure less muscular strain, aches and pain. This means that they spend fewer days off and can sustain high levels of engagement in their tasks.
Getting the right furniture is not merely an investment in brick and mortar infrastructure –but also an investment in the well-being of your employees. So, it’s essential to insist on sourcing brand new furniture from reputable manufacturers and distributors. That way, you avoid making a mistake that leads to operational challenges in your office and a low ROI value on your physical infrastructure.