By Matt Allaby, Business Development Manager, Furniture
The average worker spends seven hours a day sitting at their desk, with one in three European workers suffering daily from ailments caused whilst working at a computer, and 60% of workers claiming their productivity and performance has been either significantly or moderately affected. As a result, 32% say they have had to take time off work as a consequence with the average time taken off being 2 weeks.*
The real cost of a chair:
- You buy a £500 chair
- Your employee sits on it for an average 40 hours per week, 50 weeks per year, for five years
- That works out at 2,000 hours per year, or 10,000 hours over five years
- The chair would cost 5p per hour, or 40p per day
- Alternatively, a £100 chair would cost 1p per hour, or 8p per day
If one of your customers calls with an enquiry about their seating needs, its is quite often easy to become overwhelmed. After all, all seats look very similar and have similar features, right?
Wrong. We’ve put together a handy guide to ensure you don’t feel out of your depth when selling seating solutions to your customers.
1. Understanding your customer’s needs
This question is really simple, isn’t too awkward to ask as a conversation starter and acts as a natural stepping stone to more detailed questions. Your customer will have specific needs and by asking this you will know what questions to ask to understand them.
If your customer is replacing an existing chair for a current employee the next step is simple. Find out what chair they currently have and present them with either the same chair or a similar alternative. You also of course have the opportunity to upsell by asking if there have been any issues with the existing chair that an improved model could perhaps resolve.
If your customer requires a brand-new chair for a new starter, you will need to ask more questions to understand what specific requirements they might have.
2. Fulfilling your customer’s needs
Understanding your customer’s budget allows you to better inform them which product suits their needs whilst also remaining affordable. Once they have informed you of their budget you can begin delving deeper into their needs.
This is really important as there are three different types of chair that are suitable for different types of user.
o Entry level chair (good): This type of chair is recommended for occasional use e.g.. small office/SoHo users. This will support up to 15 stone.
o Typical chair (better): This is an everyday chair recommended for an average user working a regular daily shift pattern. This will support up to 18 stone.
o Specialist chair (best):
- Back types: Examples include standard up and down or height adjustable backs, or back rake adjustable backs (reclining).
- Arm choices: These can include fixed arms or looped arms, adjustable arms or height adjustable and fold-away arms.
- Levers: Single lever operation, twin lever operation to include up/down and back recline, or three lever operation which also includes seat tilt.
- Lumbar support – Pump-up lumbar support is an easily inflatable support in the back of the chair to support and alleviate tension in the lower back.
- Seat slide – This feature enables the user to increase or decrease the seat length.
*Statistics provided by Loudhouse research 2016 commissioned by Fellowes