Which Material is Best for Corporate Office Furniture?

Corporate office furniture can take a beating. You don’t have to be a furniture builder or a chemist to understand the types of materials that are best and why but it’s important to match the material of any corporate office furniture to its desired use. Also, know that office esthetics and the comfort of employees and guests are both important considerations when thinking about the best material for corporate office furniture. Many of our clients in Houston, TX are looking for the best corporate office furniture.

There are several materials that corporate office furniture is made from. Each piece of furniture is designed to meet a specific need and the material chosen will match that need. There are also several different finishes available including textured, solid color, and patterns. This allows offices and designers to find the perfect aesthetic and style to meet an office’s identity.

Let’s review some of the corporate office furniture materials and what they are best for.


Many corporate office furniture options combine metals like steel or aluminum with other materials in their design. Steel is a solid, heavier material used in long-lasting furniture. Aluminum options are lighter weight and might want to be considered for offices that need to move furniture around more frequently. Kadin Tables, are one example of metal corporate office furniture that offers a floating top surface, die-cast aluminum legs, and a modular substructure for exceptional stability.


Wood and architectural grade wood veneer corporate office furniture comes in many finishes and offers combinations that are great for the modern office. They’re also great for clients looking to have furniture pieces that stand the test of time. Wood furniture is often heavier and great for executive offices. Wood veneer is a good moderate range option. There several value options as well as some higher-end options giving choices to customers who want that wood aesthetic and quality. One of the best-selling wood veneer options is the Gesso Transform which is the backbone of a highly functional, adaptable and beautiful office space.

High-Pressure Laminate

Laminate is usually suggested for clients who are looking for a unique finish and color option. It is also a great value for offices on a budget that still want the best quality corporate office furniture. High-pressure laminate corporate office furniture is fashionable with many style options, it’s versatile because it’s both functional and decorative, plus it offers durability. One popular high-pressure laminate corporate office furniture option is the Narrative Media Table which is ideal for teams who need technology to collaborate on projects.

Polypropylene & Polymer Plastics

Polypropylene is a common plastic used in corporate office furniture because of its dynamic expression of material science that synchronizes every movement while being strong, versatile, and durable. Polymer is another type of plastic material that can be used for indoor corporate office furniture but is also great for furniture used outdoors. One example is the Bakhita Stackable Polymer Chairs pair well with the Bakhita Polymer Tables which are great for outdoor use. It’s a lightweight stacking option that features innovative molding technology, these weather-resistant chairs offer flexibility and functionality to corporate office furniture. Note also that there are several plastic finishes available that give a variety of color options.

Mesh, Upholstery, & Felt

Softer materials in corporate office furniture are ideal for built-in comfort. Mesh material like what’s used in the Vion Mesh Transitional Chair Series combines fashion and function in a chair designed with a breathable mesh back available in a task or guest chair that are both contoured to offer total body support. Upholstery is great for the corporate office furniture style because there are lots of textile choices. Wind Linear Seating is a great fully upholstered, fixed cushion furniture option that offers style and comfort. Felt can be used on some furniture options but is often used for noise reduction in panels like Airbloom Acoustic Panels with modules that are made from 100% molded polyester felt fiber.

Sustainability, environment, and health should also be at the forefront when choosing the best materials for corporate office furniture.

level®, BIFMA‘s sustainability certification program for furniture, is a comprehensive and transparent third-party certification program. The level mark attests that the product, the manufacturing facility, and the company responsible for the product brand, have been evaluated against the multi-attribute criteria of the ANSI/BIFMA e3 Furniture Sustainability Standard. Products certified under the level program can be chosen with confidence.

Products that achieve Intertek’s ETL Environmental VOC Certification and are recognized as products that safeguard indoor air quality. Corporate office furniture products that conform to the ANSI/BIFMA Furniture Emissions Standards (M7.1/X7.1-2011) for Office Furniture Systems and Components are always some of the best options.

Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) Chain-of-Custody(CoC) certification is an assurance that wood-based materials used in products come from forests that meet stringent environmental, social, and economic standards. It is the path taken by raw materials from the forest to the consumer, including all successive stages of harvesting, processing, manufacturing and distribution. Only products from FSC CoC companies can claim the FSC designation, assurance of a socially and environmentally responsible purchasing decision. FSC CoC certification is recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED Rating System for environmentally-focused design. From a customer perspective, the FSC label represents a promise made; CoC standards are the mechanism FSC uses to ensure that promise is delivered.

Corporate office furniture in Houston, TX should always be sustainable. It’s important for our customers throughout the US as well!

Remember: Most corporate office furniture isn’t going to consist of just one material but rather a combination of the best materials for each furniture design.

Check out this Surface Material Brochure for more details on some of the surface options available.


Written by:

John Ofield

President/CEO at Collaborative Office Interiors

Collaborative Office Interiors is a complete office furniture and systems provider in the Houston, Austin and San Antonio area. COI specializes in providing high quality/low-cost solutions to companies that are moving, upgrading or expanding.

John opened ROSI Office Systems in 1993 and the company today is on Inc. Magazines’ Top 5000 Fastest Growing Companies in 2018. John specializes in new office furniture, space planning, new workstations, Work Fit products, remanufactured Haworth cubicles, asset management, furniture liquidation, and office furniture rentals.

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