Choosing the right office desk

There are many options to consider when choosing a desk such as style, material, mobility, adjustability and support. This guide will examine the key criteria to consider when buying a desk for the workplace or home office

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  • How to choose the best office desk?

    BENE Height Adjustable Desk

    BENE Height Adjustable Desk

    The choice of desk for the home or the office can have a big influence on health, productivity as well as comfort. Making the right choice will depend on a number of factors such as:

    • Desk usage and environment
    • Type of desk and storage required
    • Desk shape, dimensions and installation
    • Desktop and base material
    • Desk style
    • Desk options and trends
  • How and where will the desk be used?

    Think about what kind of work the desk will be used for, where it will be installed and the equipment that it will need to contain. Desks can be used for a number of tasks including administrative tasks, receiving clients, creative or manual tasks, computer work, calling clients or a combination of uses. The purpose of the desk will have an impact on the size, height, storage, privacy and security required.

    FANTONI Reception Desk

    FANTONI Reception Desk

    • Home or Commercial desk? As remote and home working became more common during the coronavirus lockdown, creating a dedicated workspace at home can have a positive impact on productivity and well-being. There are often specific guidelines for desks in professional workplaces to ensure a healthy working environment. Things to consider include the recommended desk height and the distance of computer screens from the eyes. Some desks may be height adjustable to accommodate for users of different heights or allow both standing and seated work positions.
    • Open plan offices – one or many desks? If multiple desks are needed for a work office environment, consider whether users need partitions to limit noise levels or desks without partitions to encourage interaction.
    • Reception Desk begs to question: how will visitors be received? Reception desks may have a split level counter to receive visitors at standing level and also to hide the desktop from view. The design and style of the reception desk can be particularly important to give clients a positive image. If the reception desk will receive a high volume of visitors or members of the public, consider whether sneeze guards, and lockable storage will also be required for security.
  • What type of desk and storage will I require?


    HERMAN MILLER Workstation Desk

    When choosing a type of desk and storage configuration, consider what tasks it will be used for. A small desk for occasional laptop use might not need any storage. If paperwork, filing, and important documents will be produced, the desk may need a number of cupboards, shelves and drawers of a specific size with locks. Integrated trunking and holes for cables can help facilitate the passage of wires and keep them neatly arranged.

    Executive desks are larger than standard desks and are more suitable for those working in individual offices. The larger format also makes this desk easier to receive clients. Workstations are designed for professional environments and often for multiple users. The desks are often modular to allow a number of desk configurations, and typically include a partition screen, storage and holes for power cables.

  • What do I need to know about desk installations, shapes and dimensions?

    Consider the total height, width and length of the space available for the desk, taking into account windows and natural light sources so that the desk is in a well lit pleasant environment. Be sure to allow enough space for circulation and desk chairs and, if necessary, space to receive visitors or clients.

    LAS MOBIL L-Shaped Desk

    LAS MOBIL L-Shaped Desk

    The majority of desks available are free-standing, offering flexibility of positioning. For compact spaces, a wall-mounted desk can free up space when the desk is not in use and allow for easy cleaning. Free-standing desks also come in a number of compact designs. This can be particularly useful for desks in the home, student residences, hotels or those used for occasional use.

    There are a number of desk shapes adapted to certain desk functions:

    • Straight/rectangular desks – Flexible and easy to configure in multiples
    • Curved desks – The desk top may have a curved shape to optimize the work surface and make the desktop more accessible when in a swivel chair.
    • Corner desks – Designed for corner installation.
    • L-shaped desks – Great for multitasking, dividing work areas for multiple users and having a distinct desk area to receive clients.
    • U-shaped desks – Great for reception desks, allowing a distinct work area to be created.
  • What are the desk material and style options?

    The material of the desktop and the legs can have a big impact on the ease of maintenance and the aesthetic style of the desk.


    TONELLI All Glass Desk

    TONELLI All-Glass Desk

    Wooden desks can come in both solid and engineered wood.   Solid wood desks using traditional joinery techniques can add a touch of prestige to an office environment. Engineered wood products such as plywood and veneer give a greater flexibility of shapes and forms in contemporary desk designs, with the aesthetics of real wood.

    Wood-based desks finished with  melamine or  laminate are economical, easy to maintain and available in a wide range of colors and finishes. However, laminates tend to be considered less prestigious than more traditional or innovative materials. Consider the core material used and the joinery of the laminate finish. Better quality products usually have a high-quality core such as MDF or Plywood rather than chipboards of lower densities. Less expensive products might save on production costs by only using the laminate on the visible sides of the desk.

    Glass desks are stylish, wipe clean, optimize natural light but are more fragile than other materials and may chip or scratch over time. A glass table top can be combined with a metal base for a more industrial look, a wood base or be all-glass for a minimalist appearance.  Metal is normally only used for the desk base. While it is less common to have metal desktops, they can be great for slim industrial and minimalist designs.

  • What are the current desk trends and options available ?

    INTO Acoustic Desk

    INTO Acoustic Desk

    With a drive for healthier more comfortable office environments, manufacturers are proposing innovative desk solutions such as:

    • Stand-up desks: Users can work standing up and even combine working with running machines to change the dynamic of the normal desk job.
    • Acoustic desks: Integrated acoustic panels help to maintain privacy in open spaces.
    • Minimalist, compact and folding desks: As the popularity of homeworking and paperless office environments continue to grow, there are an increasing number of minimalist desk designs that integrate seamlessly with existing decor.
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