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DATE: 04/21/2016

I’m not sure where to start...

If you’re in the early stages of selecting furniture for your San Antonio office, you may be feeling a little confused.

After all, there are many things to consider with any large purchase – add the pressure of choosing items on behalf of an entire company and it’s enough to make even the coolest cucumber break into a sweat!

But don’t worry; evaluating office furniture doesn’t have to be complicated. It simply requires knowing who you are as a company and knowing the right criteria for making decisions. In this article, we’ll review exactly that, so you can confidently begin redesigning your workspace today:

1. Who Are We?

This is probably the hardest part: Articulating who you are as a company, where you’re going and the message you want to convey to stakeholders. Make no mistake about it, your office design does send a message to everyone who interacts with it: Potential clients, employees, partners and investors alike.

So, whether you’re facilitating a redesign because you’ve outgrown the old space or because it’s time to replace those dreary cubicles, now is a prime time to take stock of who you are as a company.

Mission statements, long term plans and brand identities should all be evaluated: Do you still identify with your original intentions? Is the company still moving in the same direction? Does anything need to change? Put simply, the more self-awareness you begin the office furniture selection process with the better.

2. What are our functional needs?

Once you’ve determined “who you are,” it’s time to think about the functionality you require. Call centers may need furnishings designed to partner with intricate power sources. Design studios may require conference room tables with integrated outlets for collaborating with team members “on the fly.”

Most collaborative offices would benefit from privacy enclaves that provide welcome retreats for focusing on complex assignments. Make a list of everything you can think of that would assist in the completion of individual assignments, group assignments and client meetings. Any furniture options that don’t supply these needs should be eliminated.

3. What sort of style do we require?

Again, your office furniture should be an accurate representation of your company brand. From traditional to modern to eclectic, today’s manufacturers offer a variety of options to suit every preference. While you may have personal preferences (i.e. you love solid oak and wouldn’t mind decorating your entire house with it), it’s important to put those aside when evaluating office furniture. Colors, materials and styles should all be evaluated from the lens: What best serves the company brand?

4. How sustainable are these furnishings?

Obviously, no one wants furniture that’s going to fall apart with frequent use! A reputable interior solutions provider will be able to recommend manufacturers with solid reputations for creating durable goods.

While good deals can sometimes be found when purchasing used office furniture, it’s important to carefully evaluate condition before procurement. One of the benefits to purchasing new is that your furnishings will likely come with warranties that could offer significant savings down the line.

5. How much are willing and able to spend?

While most of us enjoy shopping without glancing at price tags, that’s simply not a reality for most companies. Setting a budget can be tricky. While you definitely don’t want to overspend, you also don’t want to make the mistake of buying items that will soon be outgrown (from space, budget and style perspectives).

Just remember: Never sacrifice quality for price. A reputable provider will be able to steer you toward lesser known brands that also offer high value. At CBI, we have more than 20 years of experience helping businesses choose furnishings that meet budgetary requirements.

Ready to get started? Contact us for a free consultation.