Commercial-grade furniture (otherwise referred to as contract furniture) is any type of chair, sofa, desk, or other furnishing that's specially designed and tested to meet the demands of frequent, high-volume use common to hotels, airports, and corporations. These pieces are designed to accommodate a variety of users of different sizes and body types.
As you might've guessed, if something has a grade, then that means there's somebody who decides whether or not it "makes the grade." Business office furniture with a commercial grade has been officially certified to meet certain standards mandated by state governments, the federal government, BIFMA (Business + Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association), or ANSI (America National Standards Institute).
Why Does My Office Need Commercial Furniture?
The short answer is that it saves you money. Let's face it—customers and employees won't treat office and lobby furniture like they would their own family room's loveseat.
Commercial-grade furniture guarantees a level of toughness that easily survives heavy use in an often rough and uncaring environment. To earn the grade, designers use only the most durable materials, such as high-resilience fabrics, heavy-duty hardware, hardwood with block reinforcements, higher gauge steel, no-sag springs, and fire-resistant foam and upholstery.
Domestic furniture, although tempting with its cheaper price tag, isn't made with such durable material. Household furniture isn't made for all body types and isn't made to handle heavy traffic. Quite simply, household furniture isn't going to last in a workplace because it wasn't built for a workplace. And when furniture breaks down, you have to replace it—and that costs more money than you would've spent on a long-lasting commercial-grade product.
Commercial products come with longer warranties than home furnishings and adhere to stringent office furniture industry standards. In many cases, commercial office furniture is designed to withstand a decade or more of daily professional use with 10-year or even limited lifetime warranties.
How Do I Know If Furniture Is Commercial-Grade?
Commercial office furniture meets or exceeds ANSI/BIFMA test standards. Products undergo rigorous testing to ensure they will stand up to repetitive usage. Tests examine weight capacity, stability, durability, leg strength, and drawer strength, among others. Drawers, for example, are put through 50,000 cycles to ensure customer satisfaction. Doors and hinges go through 20,000 cycles. Hutches are tested to ensure they’ll remain attached to desks in the event of a sudden impact.
Know your state and district demands. Anyone operating a school, restaurant, or office may be required by law to populate that space with furniture meeting CRIB5 and other safety regulations.
To avoid unnecessary expense or a potential lawsuit, stock your office with only commercial-quality furnishings. Whether you're furnishing a lobby, conference room, cubicle, or executive office, hayneedle.com offers everything your business needs with bulk discounts available for organizations looking to place large orders. For further details, please contact our business sales department at 1-866-736-2084.
For more information about commercial-grade furniture standards, please visit the following sites: