Most office furniture will be shipped either ready-to-assemble (also referred to as RTA) or fully assembled. Ready-to-assemble products will require customer assembly, while fully-assembled products will be ready to use immediately. 

When choosing between RTA and fully assembled furniture, it’s important to realize that not every person is suited to the needs of each type. Take a look at the financial, time, and space requirements that typically come with RTA and fully assembled furniture before you make your purchase.


Budget is always a concern for companies, so deciding how much you are willing to spend on your new furniture before you begin the shopping process is important. 

RTA furniture will always be less expensive than fully-assembled furniture because ready-to-assemble items typically ship broken down into a more compact box. Because RTA boxes are smaller and easier to fit into a truck, they often ship via UPS, which dramatically lessens the cost since most shippers consider the weight and dimensions of the item when determining how much to charge for shipment. 

If you choose a fully-assembled piece of furniture, be prepared to pay more for the convenience of not having to assemble the furniture and the high price of shipping a larger item. Fully-assembled furniture takes up far more space, typically requiring freight shipping for products as large as a desk. If budget is your top concern, RTA is the way to go.


If you’re willing to pay a little extra for a fully-assembled desk or filing cabinet, then the convenience factor will be well worth it. Depending on the manufacturer, RTA furniture assembly can range in difficulty. You may need to simply attach the legs to a desk’s body, or you may need to do intricate work that can take multiple people and hours. 


When you buy a fully-assembled chair, bookcase, or desk, you can expect to start using your new furniture right out of the box. Fully-assembled furniture is assembled at the factory and shipped just as it’s pictured on the website. Simply unbox it, place it where you want it in your office, and you’re good to go! The extent of your assembly may be inserting shelves into a bookcase. 


If you’re setting up a new office that needs to be ready to go in a short time or if you simply don’t have the time to spend a weekend putting desks and filing systems together, then fully-assembled furniture is your best option.


Space Constraints 

Before considering buying a fully-assembled piece of furniture, be sure you have the space to accommodate it. If you’re ordering a fully-assembled chair, you probably won’t need to be concerned about getting it into your office, but be careful when selecting fully-assembled executive desks, conference tables, and other large pieces. 

When ordering larger pieces of furniture, measure the area where you expect to use the desk or table to ensure that it will fit, regardless of whether you’re ordering something fully-assembled or RTA. While RTA furniture typically ships in compact boxes delivered to your door, fully-assembled furniture that ships freight will require you to have a loading dock to accept the package. 

If your company building is small or you work from home, ask a sales representative for more information on inside or white glove delivery options. Not only does your office need to be large enough to accommodate a larger piece of furniture, but your doorways need to be big enough, too! Measure doorways and hallways leading into your office to ensure that the furniture can make it inside.

Whether you select a piece of RTA or fully-assembled furniture, both offer high-quality, durable products that can withstand everyday use in an office setting. Once you’ve determined which factors are the most important to you and which will cause an issue with your furniture purchase, shop for our wide selection of either RTA or fully-assembled products.



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