When you start planning the layout for your office space, your reception area may not be the first thing you think about, but it is the first thing people see when they step inside your office. There are elements to a great reception area that make it both welcoming and impressive, while you make sure it’s unique to your company’s style. EthoSource’s design professionals can help you every step of the way, but here are some tips so you know what to consider.
First off, if you were debating not having a receptionist and reception area, you should definitely reconsider. There’s no quicker way to give a bad impression than to have your guests aimlessly wandering around your office trying to find their meeting spot. Also, it’s really not very convenient for you to be waiting or keeping an eye out for visitors when you could simply keep working while your receptionist handles these duties. Once you have that established, it’s important to find a person who reflects a good first image on your company right from the first hello. A quality-looking reception area sets the stage for a great first impression, but a helpful and personable receptionist really drives it home.
Secondly, obviously the ideal place for a reception area is at the entrance of your office, but next you need to look at how your physical space is best conducive for an effective welcome area. Your reception station should be the center piece of the lobby. It’s placement should face the entrance door for a friendly, immediate greeting or angle it from the door slightly for a more formal style. The station’s style itself sets the tone for the rest of the room with it’s color scheme, shape and size. It’s look should match the rest of your office style throughout the building, whether it be contemporary, traditional, or somewhere in between. You want to impress your visitors when they first walk in, but you don’t want them let down by the rest of your office if you over do it.
Thirdly, make the entire lobby have a cohesive look. With your reception station setting the tone, all lounge chairs, tables, and even wall hangings and additional decor should all tie into one another. If you’re going for a warmer feel, try wood laminates and neutral colors or a more modern look could incorporate chairs with steel framing and bright colors that pop. No matter what style you choose, make sure the seating you provide can actually be sat in and isn’t so artsy that it’s uncomfortable .
Next, figure out the amount of seating you’d expect on a busy day. Two chairs and a center table may look nice, but if you have a lot of visitors daily, they’re pretty useless to a group of people that happen to come in at once. The more chairs you add, the more side tables you may need to break up the space. Our team of designers will help you plan and layout the area with drawings that can reassure your furniture will fit without disrupting the natural flow to the office.
Then, it’s important to think about how you’re going to keep the clutter and inevitable eye sores to a minimum. Make sure your storage options are discreet or hidden, so papers and folders aren’t visible to guests. Undersurface storage or mobile units, etc. could be good for hidden filing that can be easily accessible to the receptionist. Also consider where guests will put coats or umbrellas, so that they aren’t left on chairs or floors which clutter the space.
Lastly, decide on your finishing touches. Maybe that means the company logo on the front wall or some art work that adds a tasteful visual. Make sure any additional decorations are easy to maintain, but aren’t tacky. Look for ways to make your entrance unique to your company, but keep it simple, and let your furniture and employees make the biggest impression.
For some inspiration, take a look at some of these awesome reception areas from around the world.