Reception Desk

The reception desk is arguably the most important piece of furniture in any office. Obviously the bosses (executive) is also important – important to the boss at least! But the reception desk is the one everyone sees.

Every employee is likely to walk past it several times a day and, more importantly, all visitors see it. In fact, the reception desk is usually the first thing they see so it can portray professionalism and leave a good first impression.  Getting the design and construction of a reception desk right is therefore very important.

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Key Features

The material that can be used to build them varies. It should match with the design of the rest of the office and come within budget.  Often, the design of a reception desk is round or curved. If you want that sort of design you will need to factor it in at an early stage as either you or your supplier is going to need to cut the materials appropriately.

  • High back
  • High sides
  • A shelf for visitors to lean on when writing
  • Plenty of space

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The design you are building should also have high backs and sides. The first purpose of this design is to hide the clutter on the desktop, but there is another reason. It gives an air of authority to have it less open than a normal design.

The whole idea is that the work and general mania behind the reception desk is as invisible to the person standing in front of it as possible. The back – the part the visitor can see – should be clean and well designed. Make sure you sink and cover up screws, as well as make sure corners are nicely and smoothly finished off.

Shelves can be put on the inside part of the sides and the high back of the structure. This is not only a good use of space, but it is also a tidy and out of the way place to store files and paperwork.
Wooden reception desk
Make It Functional

Depending on the type of office or organization it is being built for, it may need a shelf that people standing behind it can use. This is usually for people to lean on when writing, filling out a delivery docket, marking in a visitor’s book or signing paperwork.

That means you need to get your height dimensions right. The part of the desk the receptionist will be sitting at needs to be of normal height. The high back and or shelf that is added needs to be about waist height so that someone can comfortably lean on it to write, without having to bend over too far.

Glass top shelves look particularly attractive on a reception desk. If you choose glass, or any other material, you will need to consider how you are going to fix it to the desk top. It needs to be sturdy and look well-finished.
Glass reception
Also make sure you leave enough depth in the area that the receptionist will be using. A standard sized desk is unlikely to be enough once you add the shelf and or high back. Make yours deeper so that it is big enough to accommodate the shelf along with a computer screen, keyboard, mouse, etc.  Finally, make sure it runs right down to the floor.

The actual build and materials you will need are very similar to other types of desks. The things you will find different are the extra design features such as the high backing and additional shelves.  Make sure you give a lot of thought into the overall design before you start the project and then put a lot of effort in the construction process to make sure your reception desk both looks good and is practical to use every day.