A Better Way To Buy Office Furniture
There remain few headache-inducing problems that haven’t been touched by technology in the 21st century. No rock, it seems, has been left unturned by technological breakthroughs and innovative thinkers.
One of the last industries to experience meaningful change was the world of commercial office space. Until the last decade, the multi-trillion dollar market was a stubborn holdout, with entrenched stakeholders seeing no need to mess with what had been a good thing for a very long time.
That changed about five years ago. At first slowly, and then all at once, groundbreaking solutions started to appear for an array of real estate problems. To name a few:
- VTS changed the way brokers and landlords managed their portfolios
- HonestBuildings simplified project management for real estate owners
- Workframe allowed contractors and clients to collaborate in real time
- Cadre created a liquid, institutional grade CRE investment market
- Managed by Q streamlined facilities management
- And of course, WeWork, Convene, Knotel, Breather, Industrious and others kicked off the flexible work revolution, forever changing the way companies think about work
Despite this progress, one of the biggest headaches associated with the world of commercial real estate was left behind. Office furniture — complicated, slow, bulky, and maddeningly expensive office furniture — has continued to plod along, the same as it has for the past hundred years. We started Bureau to fix it.
The Problem with Office Furniture
The problem with office furniture isn’t a lack of high quality options. Much the opposite: companies like Herman Miller, Steelcase and Knoll have been producing wonderful furniture for nearly a century. For the select customers that can afford their products, they provide a great service.
There's also no shortage of inexpensive furniture options. Companies that need a cheap fix can order a few chairs from Amazon, Ikea, or Staples. You may have to replace your purchases within the year, but in a pinch, these are fine solutions.
There are three real problems with buying great office furniture:
- Ease: Buying office furniture can quickly turn into a nightmarish quest. Price transparency is rare, e-commerce solutions rarer. Lead times often run 2–3 months. Multiple lines of communication (and payment) between manufacturers, dealers, moving companies, and assembly companies complicate matters further.
- Affordability: For all this effort, you’re met with astronomical pricing for anything of quality. Middlemen play a role throughout the process: by the time the furniture dealer, delivery, and assembly companies get their cut, the cost of seating an employee typically runs well into the $3,000-$6,000 range.
- Flexibility: You’d better be sure about headcount and hope there’s no need to move anytime soon: unless your used furniture is resale worthy, once you’ve bought it, it’s your responsibility all the way to the dump. Disposing of office furniture will cost you thousands more — trips to the landfill aren’t cheap.
The Bureau Solution
We believe there is a better way. At Bureau, we’re using technology to build an easy, affordable, and flexible way to furnish office space:
- Easy: Buy office furniture like you buy everything else: online, with a few clicks. Manage customer service, delivery and assembly, space plans, maintenance and inventory online. We’ve made furnishing your office foolproof.
- Affordable: By selling direct to customers, we offer premium office furniture for less than half the price of the competition — delivery and installation included*. That means you can furnish an employee with an ergonomic chair, standing desk, and filing cabinet for about the same price as only a chair from our competitors.
- Flexible: We know needs change. With our Bureau Flex program, growing or moving your team doesn’t mean a furniture nightmare. Need to get rid of your furniture? We’ll pick it up and give you a credit towards your next purchase. Hiring? We’ll have new, matching furniture installed within the week. Our job is to make your office furniture experience as easy as possible, across the entire lifecycle of your business.
Get in Touch
Bureau starts delivering in March 2019. If you or a team you know need beautiful, flexible and affordable office furniture in a click, we’re here to help!
*Delivery included nationwide. Assembly currently only included for qualifying orders in the New York City and Philadelphia metro areas, with more metros coming very soon.