We all know the saying about making a good first impression, and it’s definitely one to keep in mind when designing the reception layout and furniture for your office.
1. Personality plus?
What is your business? Who is your market and what do you do? Answers to these questions inform your marketing and business plans, but they should also influence your reception design. If, for example, you are a white chip corporate then your reception area would be very businesslike – quite traditional and sensible and safe, which is perfectly fine. If however, you’re an advertising agency, for example, then it’s likely you would want your reception to reflect that deep creativity and personality plus character of the business.
2. The desk
A reception desk is where visitors will first gravitate upon arriving in your office. As such, this is a very important piece of furniture to get right. How many people will be sitting at and using this desk? Do you want the desk to serve as an unspoken border between the reception and office working space – an object visitors will automatically know they should not cross? Do visitors need to be able to use a part of the desk, such as for signing in? Or do you want the desk to make a really bold and colourful statement, for it to deliver a wow factor? Keep questions like this in mind when determining what reception desk is right for you.
3. Please – take a seat
Once visitors have announced themselves, they will likely be asked to take a seat and wait. What are these seats like? Should they be quite relaxed and a little bit homely, in which case a couch might be more appropriate? Or would no-nonsense, non-descript chairs suffice – besides, they won’t be in them for long and they haven’t come to you for interior design advice. Then again, do you want to set standards early on and really impress? Designer chairs might be the way to go in this instance. Regardless, reception chairs need to deliver on looks more so than comfort – these are the chairs in your office that are unlikely to get a lot of use by the same person day in day out, and when they do use them, they won’t be there for long. This is one of those rare furniture items that encourage looks to outweigh comfort!
4. Where there’s a chair, there’s usually a table
Visitors in reception will usually expect a table to be within close proximity. This is likely to be used so they can place their glass of water there, or perhaps read through some company brochures, magazines or coffee table books that might be placed on the surface for their interest.
A book case or wall system in reception can be a great way to showcase important memorabilia in the workplace, or perhaps serve as a bit of a professional boast. Awards, certificates, promotion merchandise if appropriate etc. can all be placed on show here, and certainly it’s a good way to give the space a welcoming feel.
We hope these tips help you create the perfect first impression.