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Bespoke Desks: The 7 Crucial Decisions to Make Up Front

Posted on May 10, 2016 by Ken Rand Furniture There have been 0 comments


As one of the UK’s leading suppliers of bespoke office and reception desks, our helpful team at Ken Rand Furniture are often asked for tips and advice on what clients should be looking for when making their decisions.

As with anything bespoke in office furniture, the final product has much to do with personal taste and preference.

But when it comes to something like desks, there’s also a number of very important practicalities that many customers seem to commonly overlook. Identifying and deciding these at the outset will not only ensure you get the desk you want and need, but can also make the whole design, build and install process much, much easier (and save you bags of cash in the process).

If you’re thinking of bespoke desks, here’s our pearls of wisdom to help your research process:

Decision # 1: What do you need from the bespoke furniture?

Sounds pretty obvious. You want a desk. (big applause). But there is commonly a number of other subtle and equally important requirements also at play.

A simple but very effective process is to start by creating a list of all the things you would want from a desk. For example:

Must it fit a particular space?
And present a particular look or style?
Be a certain colour?
Fit a specific number of colleagues?
Offer disabled access?
Be height adjustable?
When do you need it by?

You get the idea. You’ll probably realise there can be scores of things you’ll need from the desk once you get going.

But remember, each factor can also carry extra cost and additional production time, so be realistic with your expectations.

Another question to ask at the outset is “do I actually need a bespoke desk?”. By its nature, anything bespoke is more expensive and you may actually find your perfect desk within our office desks or reception desks ranges.

Bespoke Desk Websites Online Furniture

Decision # 2: The Practical Stuff

Now you’ve got your list of ‘what I needs’, you need to decide how this would work in reality.

A common point customers overlook is the multiple devices and literally hundreds of cables that come with a modern desk. It’s all got to go somewhere. And ideally, neatly tucked away (showing you’re clearly smart enough to think about this from the start, you clever thing)

Plug sockets and extensions. Same thing. Where does the power need to come in and where will extensions be stored.

Also consider floor space and accessibility around the desk (leave at least 1 metre behind chairs) and the orientation of monitors on the desk. There’s nothing worse than a member of the workforce complaining about screen glare after you’ve just lovingly bought them a new bespoke desk. (They might not appreciate you suggesting they wear sunglasses).

Decision # 3: The Approach

So, you know what you want and how it will work.

Next is to consider the finer details of the actual environment. Will there always be sufficient room around the desk? Do you need to keep certain sight lines clear for security or regulatory requirements? Will screens on the desk contain confidential information and how are visitors to be accommodated whilst waiting to be seen?

Another point to think about is how you actually want the desk supplied? Constructed in the room? And how easy will it be to move if you ever need to?

Do you need to provide for disabled visitors and does this go beyond just wheelchair access? In the case of wheelchair access, where access to the building does not permit wheelchair users, then special desk provision may not be required, also knee-space for wheelchair users may only be required where ‘across desk’ consultations are required.

Keep in mind that even if you don’t have disabled staff members at present, you may in the future and have a legal obligation to consider this stuff now.

Consideration of visitors with hearing and sight impairment must also be considered.

Decision # 4: Best Materials for your Desk

What do you want your desk to be made from? And does it need to match existing décor and colour palette?

What do you want the desk to look like? Is it to be contemporary or traditional? Do you want it to cope with rough treatment, moisture, or require a hard working surface or incorporate a softer resilient surface for form filling etc?

Consider carefully the finish materials, woodgrains, colours, fabrics, glossy or mat. See our post How to select just the right material for your stunning new Reception Desk for more information how to compare finishes and the cost implications.

Bespoke Reception Desks UK

Decision # 5: Total Cost of Ownership

When it comes to buying a desk, there’s sometimes more than just the initial purchase cost to consider.

Bespoke Desks cost more than Modular desks mainly because they require design for the build process and take more time in construction. But it is often possible to customise a Modular desk to suit your particular need.

Fact 2 Bespoke Desks

In addition to the design and build costs, consider any additional delivery expenses.

And also, be clear at the outset what happens if any maintenance is required to the desk within the first 12 months. Is a warranty included?

Decision # 6: Craftmanship

As with any thing in life, there’s good and there’s bad. Generally, you get what you pay for.

And if this is a desk you want to last you a few years without falling apart, it’s generally recommend to test the credentials of whoever is going to be building this thing for you.

How would a customer do this?

Decision # 7: Time

Now this point is two-fold. And possibly the most important.

Not only how fast do you need the desk. But how much time can you afford to invest into the research and procurement process. (Let alone if you need maintenance at any point).

Which is why so many businesses save themselves the bother and trust the experience of the experts.

Fact 3 Bespoke Desks Blog Post points to consider

We’re proud to have over 40 years’ experience in design of bespoke desks (and a whole bunch of other things!) for Commercial, retail, healthcare and education establishments.

We also offer free Design Consultations to help you achieve the best results, so if there’s anything you’re unclear about or would just like a little advice around choosing an office or reception desk, please get in touch and our team will be delighted to help.

Hope you’ve found this useful.

Ken Rand


Office Furniture Specialist Ken Rand

See our article: How to benefit from our Free Design Consultation to achieve your ultimate Office Furniture, Meeting Room or Reception fit out package (at the right price)

This post was posted in Bespoke Desks, Bespoke Reception Desks

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