Home Office Essentials: Our Top Work-From-Home Furniture Styles
March 2020 saw the United States (and the world) beginning a massive experiment in working from home, as businesses closed offices nationwide in response to the spread of COVID-19. With much of the American workforce still sheltering in place, working from home (or WFH, for short) has become the “new normal”—while Research estimates that only about 3.6% of the U.S. workforce worked from home at least half the time pre-pandemic, the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research issued a report in June 2020 showing that 42% of the American labor force is now working from home full-time.
With the work-from-home lifestyle clearly here to stay, the temporary fixes of camping out around the dining room table simply isn’t a sustainable solution. At Sam Clar, our business is built around providing ergonomic furniture solutions for our clients’ work areas—and that includes home offices as well as traditional ones. The need for ergonomic furniture remains the same no matter where you find yourself taking on work tasks—which is why we believe in adapting the furniture to the person, not the person to the furniture.
Work-From-Home Furniture Must-Haves
As with any office set up, there are a number of “nice-to-have” items that can enhance the design and feel of your office area. However, this week we wanted to focus on the absolute must-haves for creating an ergonomic (and healthy) WFH area.
Must-Have #1: The Ergonomic Desk Chair
An ergonomic chair is the most important investment you can make in creating a healthy and functional WFH space. While picking an ergonomic desk chair that works for you is a personal choice depending on your preferences and comfort, there are some standards that you should look for in any model. The best ergonomic chairs for neck and back pain all have the following key functions:
- Adjustable seat height: It’s important to be able to raise or lower your seat height so that your thighs are parallel to the floor, and your feet can comfortably sit flat on the ground.
- Adjustable seat-pan: For long-lasting comfort that spans even the most rigorous workday, adjust the seat depth to allow 2” of clearance between the back of your knees and the front edge of your seat.
- Adjustable lumbar support: Low back pain is a common complaint among those who sit at a desk for long hours. Adjusting the lumbar support to comfortably fit your back can help alleviate these issues.
Seat Tilt Tension: Though it’s often overlooked, this function allows you to adjust to varying degrees of recline throughout the day without “locking” in place.
Top-rated ergonomic chairs for your budget
- Budget-friendly: The Zone Classic is our most affordable ergonomic chair, and retails for $199. Even at this low price, the Zone has all 4l key functions mentioned above—delivering a high-value option for any home office.
- Mid-range: The Allsteel EVO chair, which retails for $570, offers a sophisticated look coupled with intuitive Ergonomic features. The EVO is an ergo mesh chair, with sliding adjustable lumbar support.
- Luxury: The Humanscale Freedom chair (shown above) retails for $1,191, and is considered the gold standard of ergonomic chairs. It is as beautiful to look at as it is comfortable to sit in, and with its high back and generous headrest, it’s the perfect ergonomic office chair for a tall person.
Must-Have #2: The Adjustable Work Surface
A good adjustable height desk or standing desk is just as crucial for a healthy home office as an ergonomic desk chair. Several recent reports have highlighted the health dangers associated with prolonged sitting, and it is now recognized that mixing sitting and standing over the course of your workday can help combat some of the health hazards of a sedentary lifestyle. The general rule holds that for every 40 minutes spent sitting, one should stand for 15 minutes and walk for 5—with no one period of sitting lasting more than 40 minutes uninterrupted. The key to accomplishing this balance is a sit stand station. Whether your have an electric stand up desk, or a manual adjustable standing desk platform, look for these key functions:
- Generous Range of Height: The range of heights offered by your work surface will ideally span from 26” at the low end to 50” at the high end. This range allows for a level typing height for both seated and standing positions, accommodating individuals measuring from 5’3” to 6’2”.
- Easy adjustability: Whether you’re using an electric sit-stand desk, or manual adjustable desktop riser, your solution should be easy to operate and adjust. Pick an intuitive option that you’ll actually use, and eliminate as many hurdles as possible between you and a healthy, ergonomic working style.
- Adequate Work-Surface: Ensure that the surface is large enough to accommodate your primary work tools, whether you primarily use a laptop or have a large, multi-piece setup including multiple monitors, a phone, printer, or other daily necessities.
Top-rated adjustable work surfaces for your budget:
- Budget-friendly: The High-Tide 4 (shown above) is a commercial-grade desk-top riser priced at $275. Its spacious surface accommodates dual monitors and offers easy adjustment. This unit sits on top of your existing surface and provides 14.75” range of motion.
- Mid-range: The My-Hite electric adjustable height work desk, priced at $475, offers a 24” x 60” work-surface and an adjustable height range that spans from 27” to 45.5”.
- Luxury: The Allsteel Altitude electric adjustable stand up desk is a deluxe option that costs $778 and offers quick and easy electric height adjustment at the touch of a button. It offers a a 30” x 60” work surface and can be adjusted to any height from 22.75” to 48.5”.
Next Steps: Creating A Healthy Home Office
A good WFH office doesn’t have to break the bank. In the end, furniture for your home office setup will be driven by a combination of your available budget, your space allowances, and your design aesthetic—but every remote worker can benefit from a few budget-friendly essentials, like a quality desk chair and an adjustable work surface. The experts at Sam Clar are adept in assisting in creating ergonomic, healthy and effective office spaces on any scale (and budget)—and our team is ready to assist you with transforming your space. Visit us at Express by Sam Clar to view the latest home office ideas and find the right work from home furniture pieces for you.