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Office Desk Buyer's Guide

Office Desk Buyer's Guide

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Choosing the correct furnishings for instructors and employees can impact the productivity and morale of students and your entire workforce and add peace of mind knowing personal effects are secure with locking drawers and cabinet doors. Consider Worthington Direct’s wide range of office desks for your classrooms or offices. Manufactured from a variety of different materials, there’s an office desk to match your school or company’s design.

Modern Office Desk

Most people spend up to 40 hours a week at their desk. With this much time spent sitting, an office desk should create a space that is comfortable, functional, and aesthetically pleasing. It’s the place where most employees keep their computers, phones, and important documents, so choosing a new desk is a critical task. With the right desk, people may even look forward to sitting there.


Understanding the desk material may provide insight into office desk pricing as well as suitable environments. It is important to select the best material for your budget and needs. The traditional office desk is made of wood—but wood can be heavy, expensive, and easy to nick. If you want the look of wood with a lower price tag, consider wood veneer.

When choosing a material, consider durability, weight, and strength. Someone who intends on changing their space frequently will benefit from furniture that can come apart or is compact. It is ideal for furniture to be light to make it easier to pick up and move around. Checking weight loads is a good idea for someone who plans on using the desk for heavy-duty purposes.

Steel: Requiring low maintenance, steel desks offer exceptional durability and storage with clean lines and a professional look at the most affordable price. Wide ranges of designs and colors make steel desks an easy way to match existing furnishings. From very elaborate grandiose pieces to modern lightweight furniture, there are several options.

Laminate: Laminate is the process of putting two or more layers of material together, increasing the strength. With the widest range of colors and design types, laminate desks are a popular option for furnishing office and administrative spaces. They are also highly customizable via accessories like keyboard trays and various file pedestals.

Solid Wood and Veneer: When properly maintained, solid wood and wood veneer desks offer the utmost durability and security over decades. Perfect for traditionalists, or to achieve a vintage yet timeless look. Wood and wood veneer are very popular choices because of availability. Depending on the kind of wood selected, it can be very affordable to very expensive, so there is a variety to suit any budget.

Glass: This offers high-end style, but if you have a very smooth glass surface, it can be a nuisance to keep clean and very heavy depending on the glass thickness. Most of the glass desks currently on the market are made with tempered glass, which is sturdy and safe.


Consider the space that is allowed. Take measurements no matter how well you think you know the room. Knowing how much room is available will help narrow down the choices. A common problem with desks is an improper fit, so considering how much space the desk provides is crucial. For example, knees can bang into things, or the placement may not provide a good reach to the keyboard.

Underneath: There should be enough space under the desk for legs to move around freely. Leg crossers need enough room between their thighs and the bottom of the desk.

Front: For most offices it’s necessary to keep room in front of the desk for guests to sit down. This should be spacious enough for chairs and to walk around.

Behind: There needs to be ample space behind the chair, especially if there is a wall or objects behind it. Keeping three to four feet of space clear behind the chair is a good rule.


Teachers Desks

Used for anything from lecturing, filing sensitive material like grades and teachers’ editions of text, to a place for teaching implements like projectors and computers, teachers desks comprise a diverse category.

Teacher & Instructor Desks

Administrators require security and the maximum durability for their budget. Teacher desks are often freestanding, acting as the main hub in a classroom, or used in office annex spaces where desks move more frequently.

Executive Desks, Credenzas, and Suites

Given their increased responsibilities, most executives need more workspace than the average employee. Different shapes and colored metal frames, laminates, and veneers ensure the executive desks complement the design and layout of any complex.

Credenzas supplement your primary writing surface by adding another full size work surface to office spaces. Hutches are excellent accessories for credenzas and add vertical storage space via cabinets or bookshelves. For someone who enjoys papers out, a larger work area means they won’t have big piles of paper falling down all around them because of a small surface.

L shaped desks add the element of a reversible return to the standard work surface for a secondary workspace. Often these returns can be paired with file pedestals for added storage, and are often cases reversible to accommodate desks placed against an existing wall, oriented to the right or left of the room. An L Shaped Desk offers lots of placement options. It can be used like a large corner desk. Or, one arm of the desk can be set against the wall, allowing the other arm to stick into the center of the room.

U shaped desks take the concept of extra space to another level by adding a third work surface to an L shaped desk in the form of a credenza type implement and extra storage options underneath. The space is divided into sections, which allows for separate work areas. This is an ideal set-up for people with dual monitors or for two people sharing a desk. It does take up a large footprint in the room, so it is not ideal for small spaces. It is not easily moved from one room to another; a U shaped desk designed for one room might not suffice in another.

Office Desk Suite

Office Suites expand upon the U shaped desk by adding hutches or shelving with a uniform design style; an all in one option for furnishing executive offices. It often includes two desks, a center desk, and a straight wall desk. The ample desktop space provides plenty of storage room. Office suites are a breeze to order and will get your office up and running smoothly. Be sure and check the overall footprint dimension to ensure a comfortable fit in your soon-to-be office space.

Reception Stations

Reception stations are frequently positioned in the front of offices and serve as the public’s first impression of a company. Most feature a standing height counter and a tall façade, helping aide in interaction with clients while allowing privacy to employees and their workspace. The reception counter space is also an optimum location to display important literature, special forms, and sign-in sheets.

Reception Desk Stations

Reception stations can be used as a concierge’s desk and serve as an information kiosk, security stations for checking in and documenting visits, and as intended, a way to greet the public and review appointments.

Office Desk Accessories

Adding to a desk and changing it up with accessories or special features is a useful way to make sure a desk is unique to one’s needs. A desk that allows storage add-ons is helpful for people whose work changes constantly, or who need extra storage.

Some office desks require additional parts to increase their functionality. Desk shells can not only be paired with credenzas, but also additional storage in the form of file and drawer pedestals, matching bookcases, storage cabinets, hutches, lateral and vertical files, and keyboard trays.

Top Brands for Office Desks:
HON Sandusky Lee NDI OFD Regency

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