Savvy office managers and facilities buyers are more cost conscience then ever. Price per unit is king when it comes to purchasing facility furnishings.
With literally hundreds of online shops, one can click twenty office chairs right into a virtual shopping cart in seconds. And sure enough, two weeks later, box upon box of product is drop shipped at your dock on the day and time of the shippers convenience not yours, and if your maintenance crews at lunch- heck, you can push those boxes out of the rain yourself, right?
Then what? Well, most if not all furniture you purchase online will come in several pieces with a bag of hardware and instructions. While an experienced furniture installer can unpack, assemble and clean up after one chair in under 10 minutes- a novice will mostly likely take three times that long and that’s only if there are no shipping damages or defects which must be documented and a return authorization number acquired to ship the damaged material back and receive a replacement. Then there is the trash which must be broken down and removed/recycled from the building.
It’s wise to remember that material handling does involve labor and time. In order to get the true cost of your twenty chair purchase you must factor in the time and labor involved to assemble and install your furnishings and clean up the extensive packing material it came in.
When an Office Manager or Facilities Director establishes a relationship with a furniture dealer, they will provide delivery on a day and time of your convenience, assemble and install all the product and handle any damage claims associated with the purchase from the day of delivery on. Over time, the dealer will get to know your facility and may be a great source for product deals, inventory control and space planning that can save your firm thousands of dollars on such things as reconfiguration’s, moves or expansion of your office.
Dealers continually check their pricing against online prices and make every effort to be competitive while still providing service and handling damage claims.
Feel free to continue to click those K-cups and toner cartridges into your virtual shopping cart, but beware of any item with the dreaded print that reads- assembly required.