You might be starting a new office or you might be in charge of supplying furniture in bulk to a client of yours. Now you face the question, how to go about ordering.
The lockdown has taught us how fast things can become irrelevant. The costs become greater when it comes to ordering in bulk. The bulk order will not only cost you a lot, but also become a burden on you should you need any replacements or should your requirements change.
Here are a few of our observations that may help you decide how to go about placing your order, given the changes in work culture because of COVID-19.
1. People tend to underestimate the number of pieces required to furnish an office. Now, they might overestimate.
Furniture is generally not bought keeping in mind the current number of employees in an organization. Purchase decisions keep in mind expansion of team and the likelihood of having visitors over. That’s normally involved adding a couple of chairs extra in the bulk order. You’d be surprised to know that even that extra bit is hard to make up for the ever increasing requirement. Organizations continue to face “furniture crunch” when it comes to hosting a client over.
With the change in working culture and the rise of remote working, people might be overestimating the number of furniture pieces they’ll need.
2. People tend to search online for suppliers of furniture. Now, the search results are going to be full of similar-sounding options.
Not everyone knows a furniture supplier. Not everyone keeps a track of brands in furniture industry.
Searching online is a good start. But with restrictions on movement, many people might be forced to make decisions on the basis of the online “look and feel”. Which means that there would be a reduced likelihood getting what is really needed.
3. Specifics like measurement and layout might turn out to be even more disorienting than before while placing bulk orders.
Wanting 10 workstations is different from having space for 15 work stations. A requirement for a wall cabinet is different from ensuring it doesn’t harm the painting on the wall.
When it was easier to have service men come and take specific measurements, it was easier for the suppliers to recommend certain products and not others. Extra vigilance towards measurements and layout will be required now.
4. The expected usage and purpose of a piece of furniture will now include more versatility and adaptability.
A chair was conventionally expected to fulfil the requirement of seating a person. Very few fancy offices had lounging chairs one could use to relax or even sleep in.
Now, more and more people would need a chair to help them do more. People may have longer shifts in office because they might be asked to come once in a while. A table might be “unfolded” to become a bed or folded to make space for a bed. Anything may happen – it all depends on the structure and functioning of an organization.
These are just four possibilities of the change in expectations from office furniture. Because there’s no saying what office culture will look like yet, you could keep these points in mind before you order anything in bulk.
Things are not uncertain – they’re also expected to keep evolving. Bulk orders need a lot more guided approach than before.
Let us know if we can help.