When someone is just starting out in a new business venture, their running funds and allowable expenses are meticulously allotted out in every detail. When it comes to one of the most expensive start-up expenses such as purchasing office furniture, saving money is always going to be a top priority. The more money one can save, the more cash that goes back into the reserves one needs, for all of the unforeseen expenses that tend to inevitably pile up. By following these easy top-4-tips on how to save money when purchasing office furniture, you will have all you need to know to be successful.
1. Know Your Needs
Making a structured furniture plan ahead-of-time, is the best way to save. The first thing that you want to do is to make a list of the things you absolutely need. IE: Cubicles, desks, chairs, etc. – Just the basics in the first column. Second, make another column under the first; listing everything else that accompanies an office: Waiting room? – Couches, end tables, etc. Break room? – Tables, chairs, fridges, etc. Then in a third column at the bottom of your list, make your wish list. Now that you have your priorities straight, you will be able to focus from the top down on the most important things on your list first. You will then be able to find out just how much of your list, your budget will actually be able to handle.
Break out that sketch pad and pencils, and draw a rough office floorplan. Identify on it everyplace a piece of furniture will go, and its purpose there. This will unequivocally sort out what is truly needed, from what you can actually do without. You can always purchase more office furniture, but it is far much harder to try and return your overbought furniture back to the retailer you bought it from. Check with your employees and get their input on any certain office needs, they foresee, or suggestions from their past experiences. Find out first from them before you buy; what worked in the office and what didn’t. This way you won’t be purchasing a common expensive mistake that you will regret later.
2. Know the Market
There is an endless amount of furniture outlets, using multiple mediums, in order to sell you their stock of furniture. You will now have to decide whether you need all new furniture or not. New is of course the most expensive way to purchase office furniture. Newbies to the process may not be aware that “lightly” used and totally refurbished furniture is available, which is usually very hard to tell the difference between recycled or new. Used furniture can be half the cost of new, and is usually sold in both small and large lots. This allows plenty of room to haggle on price, depending on the amount of furniture one needs to purchase. Used office furniture is normally remnants from the bankruptcies of the Great Recession, and in surplus. This will give you an advantage when buying in bulk, especially since most venders are ready to unload their stored investments of used furniture, especially in a better
Always talk to the manager when buying in bulk, that way you will be talking to the person who has the power to knock down the price, depending on the size of your order. Ask around about bulk order perks, such as free delivery. That can turn into big savings. Don’t be fooled by the “Everything Must Go” establishments that are perpetually always going out of business. They are usually scam artists with substandard or factory seconds for product. When shopping for smaller lots of furniture, try establishments that pay their salespeople on commission. They will most likely be ready to make a deal that will save your pocket some money, in order to put some cash into theirs. The extra time spent getting to know the retail market your up against, will save your company allot of money in the long run.
3. Know what’s Practical and Productive
Modern designs may look great, but that doesn’t mean they are functional, nor conducive to production. Looks can be deceiving, and comfortability is only part of the office furniture equation. Make sure to thoroughly check into all of the little things. Do the chairs roll, offer various heights, are they ergonomically designed for healthy posture. Do you want a modern open space style workplace, by adding some standing desks, and open employee collaboration areas, hoping to boost office productivity? Or do you staunchly believe that the standard, traditional, office cubicle is the best way to go. The core nature of your business will greatly influence the nature of your office design. Productivity and practicality should be factored into every design from the beginning.
Just like if you were buying furniture for your home that reflects you, buy furniture for the office that reflects your business statement as well. Your office shouldn’t just reflect what it does; it should also always reflect who does it. The first impression a client perceives when entering your office should tell them who you are and what you stand for. Your employees will physiologically pick up on the theme as well, influencing their work in a positive way. A well thought out practical office plan will make working easier and more efficient, and help to positively enhance both employee productivity, and also workplace morale.
3. Know Your Limitations
When shopping for new office furniture, knowing when to stop may end up being the hardest part of the buying process. If you are feeling some reservations about an office purchase, stop and listen to your gut instincts. One should never rush into a major business purchase like office furniture. Take a moment and utilize your time in order to do it right. There are no second chances after the order is purchased, and is on its way to your location. Buyer’s remorse in these types of situations can be emotionally, professionally, and financially devastating. It’s best to make the task of buying office furniture a focused, comfortable endeavor, and to properly do one’s research ahead-of-time. Following the right steps along the way is the sure path to a good purchase, and will successfully help guarantee substantial savings for your new business when in the process of buying office furniture.