How to Design Your Office Reception Area

When you step into an office you will immediately run into the reception room or waiting room. The reception room is the face of the office as well as the first and last point of contact. This is also where your customers/clients will establish their first impression of your business and the area where some people will be spending the majority of their time during their visit. Leaving a good impression is critical in any business and a great way to retain current customers as well as receive referrals for new customers. With a nicely decorated reception area, customers/clients will feel welcome and at ease while waiting to be seen. Unless you are an interior designer the task of remodeling the reception room may seem a bit overwhelming at first, but with a little knowledge of what makes a reception room attractive this task can be easier than you think.

The Design

Various design elements such as the colors used, furniture selected, branding, and layout can make a statement about how your company operates. You will need to determine the overall look you want to display in your reception area, what clientele frequents your office most often? Ideally, the space should cater to the type of visitor that comes most frequently while representing “the look” of your company at the same time. This might mean sleek, cozy, kid-friendly, fun, creative, and so forth. Your color scheme is also important to consider, and will vary between different businesses. If you wish to give off a more professional vibe light neutrals and earth tones will blend in well with most furniture and gives off a traditional aura. If you are in the creative industry bright and fun colors, without going too overboard, might be an option to convey you have an innovative yet professional company atmosphere.

The Chairs

Perhaps the most essential component of having an attractive reception area is the furniture that will be consuming most of the space, particularly the reception chairs. It is important to keep in mind that people will be spending most of their time sitting down while waiting in the reception, therefor you will want to have furniture that is both comfortable and appealing. Durability is also of the utmost importance; many different people will be spending time sitting in your reception chairs and you will want to have something that is going to be able to last for years to come. It is recommended to consider purchasing larger and wider reception chairs in order to ensure that they will be able to accommodate users of all body types. If younger children are frequent visitors to your facility, consider purchasing vinyl or leather guest chairs as this upholstery will be easier to clean spills and are more resistant to tears in the material.

The Furniture

Once you determine which reception chairs you want, the next step is to determine how many you will need. The best way to figure out how many chairs you will need to outfit your reception area is to calculate how many chairs it takes to seat your clients and visitors on a busy day. If you are remodeling and looking for a new set of chairs to replace your old ones, stick with the number of chairs you currently have if you are satisfied with that amount. After you have the quantity determined, pick out a few small reception tables to break up the clutter of chairs and arrange them around the tables. This will provide a neater appearance and also give you space to store reading materials such as magazines to keep your guests entertained. Be sure to find out the measurements of each piece of furniture and check them against the blueprint of your reception space to ensure all the furniture will fit with ample room for traffic flow, especially in front of the reception desk.

The Decorations

After you have your office furniture and overall design in place, the last factor to consider is adding some decorations to your reception area to add to the overall ambiance. Greenery is a simple and inexpensive way to brighten any room. Stick a large plant tucked away in the corner of the room out of your visitors way or add a small plant to a side table where it will not get knocked over. Paintings or photographs are another simple but easy way to grab attention, as long as it has a sophisticated feel to it and reflects your company’s style. Provide interesting reading content for your visitors to browse through while waiting to be seen. Magazines have always been a staple in many waiting rooms, however a travel book of interesting places to visit or other coffee-table books you would consider engaging might set you apart from other businesses. A TV is another great addition to add to office decorating; if visitors typically spend a lot of time waiting this will help quickly pass the time.

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