Of course, this assumes you want to install a water dispenser in your office. First off, there are a few questions you need to ask yourself. Is this for your own use, or is it for the whole office staff? Is room temperature water sufficient for your needs, or do you need chilled water, or do you need hot water? Do you need filtered and purified water? Do you need the water to be sterile or disinfected?

For solo use, bottled water is the easiest solution. Either buy it during your lunch break, or buy it on your way home and then bring it to the office with you the next day. Keep a good quality electrical kettle on your desk if you want hot or boiling water. They can boil two liters of water in under 5 minutes. If you want to save the bother of constantly boiling water, get an electric airpot. It will keep your water hot throughout the day.

If you think that lugging around bottles of water is inconvenient, an alternative to be considered is a water pitcher or water dispenser with its own filtration system. Then all you need to get fresh water is to top it up from the tap in the pantry or kitchen. The two leading brands are PUR and Brita. Most people prefer the taste of water produced by PUR water filters, but Brita filters are cheaper. Both companies make water dispensers in several different sizes, so it is easy to find one which best fits your needs. Normally, buying through Amazon is a no-brainer - there is often a discount, you don't pay tax on your purchases, and there is sometimes free shipping.

Unfortunately, both PUR and Brita seem to be struggling with quality control for their new models, with a number of complaints of poor workmanship and leakage. Until the come to grips with these problems, it is probably a better idea to buy their water pitchers from a regular brick and mortar store where you can personally check the quality. One more problem with these water dispensers is that their water filter cartridges seem to work much more slowly compared to older cartridges. Some customers have complained that they only got one or two cups of water even though they filled the pitchers up overnight. Given this, if you drink a lot of water, you may want to get two or three medium sized pitchers rather than a single large one.

If you are the boss, and you want to buy a water dispenser to provide clean drinking water for your staff, you can also buy large PUR or Brita water pitchers. Both companies produce models which hold 18 cups of clean water, and you can get better quality water filter cartridges which can remove chlorine, the two most common microorganisms found in tap water (cryptosporidium and giardia), the three most common heavy metals (lead, copper and mercury) and a number of different organic contaminants (mainly herbicides and pesticides).

To dispense hot water for coffee and tea, just keep a couple of electric airpots filled up and you're done. The leading brand in the US is Zojirushi, which is very well-regarded worldwide. Just keep in mind that airpots take longer to boil water than electric kettles, so when you first fill it up you may need to wait up to 30 minutes to get your hot water from the airpot. After that, though, you will always have hot water as long as you keep the electric airpot filled up.

These are all relatively economical means of dispensing water for the small office which do not require a nearby water pipe or any modifications to your tap. If you have access to the pantry, you may want to consider springing for a pipe-fed water dispenser with water filter which provides both cold water and hot water. Just note that this will not be cheap, and is not something you can install yourself.

A potentially better choice is to sign a long-term contract for bottled water. Depending on your needs, the bottled water company will deliver a new load of bottles weekly or monthly, with an additional fee for extra bottles at other times. They may provide a hot and cold water dispenser for free, or you may have to rent it for a nominal cost. The good points are that they will be responsible for the maintenance of the water dispenser, and you can usually choose to be supplied with mineral/spring water, distilled water or reverse osmosis water. The only problems are that you will need to find space to store the 3 or 5 gallon water bottles, and someone will need to change the water bottles regularly. 5 gallons of water is not light, and is not something that a bunch of old lady clerks or computer nerds can handle.

These are your main choices for water dispensers to provide clean water in your office - PUR/Brita water pitchers, electric airpots, a hot and cold water dispenser fed from the water pipe, and bottle-fed water dispensers.