Edited March 2020
Whether you’re outfitting C-suite offices or filling the stable of workstations for your entire staff, the office chair and desk are the two most important pieces of furniture in which to invest. We covered the best materials for good office chairs, so now, let’s wade into the realm of desks.
Employees Want Comfort and Quality
Your workforce is your most important asset, and your employees the ones who are using their desks for hours a day while in the office. Yes, you want aesthetically pleasing furniture, but if it’s not up to snuff for your staff, there could be problems that affect everything from employee productivity to job satisfaction rates. First and foremost, consider their needs in choosing this furniture. Perhaps a survey would get a good read on the situation from your workforce’s perspective.
They want something comfortable, and you want something durable that won’t break the budget, but also won’t need replacement before you’re ready for an upgrade. So let’s take a look at the available options.
The quality of wood materials for desks vary greatly. Hardwoods such as mahogany, walnut, cherry, or oak have been staples in offices since time began, and they are particularly handsome in their many designs. However, with the high quality of solid wood desks come high costs. To minimize this, desks manufactured with hardwood veneers over particleboard have surfaced. As one would expect, with the lower price of such options comes lower quality. These desks do not weather heavy usage for as long as the solid wood options, and as such, need replacement, maybe before your budget is ready.
Wood, however, offers a timeless beauty to any office, and with the versatility of design elements in the woodworking itself, as well as varieties of stains and paints, there’s virtually nothing a wood desk cannot be, design-wise.
There is a balance to be had with using glass for office desks. They’re durable insofar as they’re not likely to wear the same way as wood, but they’re a mix of sturdy and fragile. They offer quite an array of configurations, making them optimal for creative or multi-use projects. But put them in a harsher environment—such as manufacturing or high traffic usage—and the risk of breakage is necessary to consider. Tempered glass can minimize safety risks somewhat, but they’re more suited to professional environments.
Their framing can be part of the aesthetic, as well, with metal or wood supports and frames, which can really set off the beauty of the glass. Available in smoky colors, tinted, or even frosted, they’re an elegant consideration for any professional office.
Trends are showing a resurgence of metal materials in modern office design, and this is an extremely versatile option. Metal can be shaped for a collection of bespoke desks that can really turn your office into an art gallery. One of the most durable materials, you’ll be ready for a design upgrade before these desks are truly worn out. But their rigidity is not conducive to much flexibility, which can be the downside of the office that reinvents itself and its needs every few years. However, being mindful of the ways custom furniture can be designed for multipurpose use, you can ensure you retain the flexibility you need with a little forethought before ordering. With this option, you know you’ll get years of good usage for your investment.
There’s plenty a good desk says about you and your staff. From the first desk your clients see upon entering reception to the power and influence of the executive desk, paying attention to the details as well as the materials speaks volumes about your business. Elegant or sturdy, sweeping or imposing, the design of a desk has the ability to set the mood of a room. What would you have your desks say about your company?