New work space and office furniture standards introduced

Author: Susan Lister

In support of Notre Dame’s Advancing our Vision initiative, the University Space and Project Review Committee recently reviewed how the University expends funds related to the purchase of furnishings on campus. With input from Procurement Services and Facilities Design and Operations, an updated set of Work Space and Office Furniture Standards has been developed and approved by the committee.

These standards, available online at, supersede and replace any previously published office space guidelines or standards.

“The purpose of the Work Space and Office Furniture Standards is to assist space planners in the design of work spaces for future new buildings and renovations to existing facilities,” says Julie Boynton, director of interior architecture in Facilities Design and Operations. “The standards also provide specific direction to faculty and staff for any future furniture purchases.”

The objective of the standards is to create working environments that:

  • Provide effective and efficient work space
  • Provide long-term flexibility
  • Promote collaboration
  • Sustain existing building space by minimizing the impact of future modifications to administrative office environments
  • Are achieved and procured at an appropriate cost and level of quality

Business Furnishings now ND’s primary furniture dealership

In order to streamline and ensure appropriate application of the Work Space and Office Furniture Standards, all new furniture purchases for the University will be administered through a primary furniture dealer partnership with Business Furnishings. When campus users have furniture needs, they should contact Business Furnishings directly. The ND Business Furnishings contact is Debbie Butler. She can be reached by phone at 574-243-3255, ext. 224, or email at

New University furniture inventory program introduced

Business Furnishings will manage a new University-wide furniture inventory program located at an off-campus warehouse. Furniture inventory will be collected from existing, unused furniture throughout campus and/or old furniture that is being replaced with new.

Employees should contact Business Furnishings when they anticipate a furniture change, such as:

  • Removal of existing, unused furniture
  • Removal of furniture that will be replaced
  • Purchase of replacement furniture
  • Purchase of new furniture

Business Furnishings will use the new Work Space and Office Furniture Standards to meet the needs of campus clients. A negotiated pick-up and delivery charge will apply. Business Furnishings can provide an estimate upon request. Overall cost will be determined by size and complexity of the project.

Savings add up

The University currently spends approximately $4 million per fiscal year on furniture purchases, for new construction, renovation projects and departmental furniture purchases. It is anticipated that the new Work Space and Office Furniture Standards could potentially save the University $340,000 per year.

Employees who have questions about the new Work Space and Office Furniture Standards or the partnership with Business Furnishings should contact Julie Boynton ( or Tom Rogers ( The new standards take effect June 1.