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How To Arrange Your Office Furniture


Setting Up Your Office Furniture

Having a clear workspace is essential in planning our your office furniture location. Get a tape measure and check out all the angles. Watch out for mouldings, radiators, windows, pipes and other detractions from what may appear visually to be a linear room. Measure all walls: some rooms may even have sloping or angular walls.
contemporary sofa love seat

Office Furniture Purpose

Determine what purpose the space the office furniture occupies has and the purpose of each piece of office furniture. This will have an effect on how space might be divided up and furniture arranged. Some furniture may not belong in a given space.
  • Primary Conversation Area:

    • 8-12 feet in diameter is ideal
    • Seats 4-6 people
  • Secondary Conversation Area:

    • Seating for just 1-3 people
  • Conference Area:

    • Allow 3 feet from the table edge for the person to be seated at the table and room behind for traffic.
    • Each person is allowed a minimum of 24 inches of seating room at the table.

Measure Your Office Space

Measure the room and write down its dimensions. Do the same for your furniture. Make a flat scale drawing of the room using graph paper as if seen from above. (EXAMPLE: 1 little square represents one quarter of a square foot [3"] and four of those equal one square foot.) You may want to shade the floor close to what is already there (beige if the carpet is beige) if there is a need to coordinate colors -just make sure you can see the lines on your graph paper.

Draw Out Room: Make a Floor Plan

Draw flat scale drawings of your furniture as if seen from above. Don't get too detailed. At the very least you need the size and shape in relation to the room; Color the piece if you think it's important and then label it.
executive office

Space Planning Design Guidelines

Consider the following traffic flow / spacing guidelines:
  • Spaces that need 36"-72" (3' to 6') clearance:

    • Hallways
    • In front of closets, file cabinets, and storage cabinets.
    • Any route where two people might pass each other
    • In front of counter or utility areas, e.g. photocopier, computer printer, fax machine.
    • From the edge of a conference room table to a wall or stationary object.
    • 4' or more for stairways.
  • Spaces that need 18"-48" (1.5' to 4') clearance:

    • Between sofas & coffee tables
    • 30" in routes where only one person will walk such as around private desk or through private doorways.
    • There should be at least 30" of clearance in front of utility areas.

Configure Office or Room

Take your scale drawing of the room's floor plan and rearrange the scale drawn pieces of furniture on it until you see a configuration you like and think works best for the space and furniture's purposes and traffic flow. Tape the pieces down with small pieces of tape (so that you can easily move them if you change your mind) and begin preparing to move your furniture into that configuration.

Moving Furniture

You have two options for moving the furniture:
  • Move everything out of the room
-OR-
  • Move pieces little by little.

Options in Setting Up Your Office

Regardless of your above choice the following steps are applicable:
  • Move the first piece to where you want it to go, and keep going from there.
  • Move all the things outside your door back into your room.
wood desk

Office Furniture Design Tips

  • Clean the room before you move the furniture.
  • Decide whether or not the furniture in the room should be kept. It should serve the room's purpose and be on the scale of the room -a small room should have small pieces of furniture and large room should have large pieces. If a large room cannot be filled with large pieces of furniture, divide the space up using the smaller pieces of furniture available arranged around / anchored by an area rug.
  • Use a computer application such as Visio to help draw up your scale drawings.
  • Area rugs not only work to bring color, texture and interest to a room but work as traffic flow guides and indications of transition from one area to another. Arrange furniture around or on top of area rugs. (A coffee table would be placed on top of an area rug, for example, and furniture arranged around that.)
  • Clean the furniture before moving it back in place. It may be a long time before you bother to move that piece again for thorough cleaning.
  • Vacuum or clean the floor afterwards.
  • If you have wooden floors, put a piece of old carpet or a rag under each leg before you move an item of furniture; it will slide more easily and won't scratch the floor. Leave it there after you have finished to avoid damaging the floor.
  • If you are moving pieces on carpet consider moving pads or placing pieces of cardboard or wood on the floor so that furniture slides more easily.
computer workstation

Use Caution in Moving Office Furniture

  • Do not move furniture in a messy room!
  • Be careful and do not move anything that is too heavy for you!
office furniture delivery and setup

Tip: Use BiNA Office Furniture's professional fleet delivery to make setup a snap!

This article provided as a public service. We are not responsible for its contents or your results. Article adapted from wikiHow

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