Complete Guide to Different Types of Office

Finding the right storage system is important for having a well-running office, but it can’t be easy to know what storage is fit for your office.

Your office storage is often the last piece of the jigsaw when purchasing office furniture since there are so many different options on the market to consider. It can be an issue knowing where to begin when it comes to finding the right items.

A reception area is important and should be a high priority if you want your office to stand out from the competition.

Below is a guide about choosing the perfect storage solution for your office and home.

storage furniture
3d illustration of bright interior library office with white shelves and a large window

What is the most effective office storage?

Before you begin shopping, it’s important to know about the different types of storage available.

Filing cabinets

Office filing cabinets are often used as a storage solution for workplaces. A filing cabinet is a useful thing to have in an office, but you should consider what kind of filing cabinet you need before buying one.

There are two standard sizes for files in offices: A4 or foolscap. Check before purchasing filing cabinets to make sure they have space for both. File cabinets range in size from two drawers to four drawers. – Make sure they have anti-tilt mechanisms built for added safety.

Side filing cabinets are different from standard filing cabinets because they are wider and can usually take multiple file sizes. Filing cabinets have lockable metal drawers, and they are often available in either steel finishes or woodgrains.

Office pedestals

Office pedestals are a storage option for the office and come in a variety of sizes. Desks come in different styles and colours with two or three drawers, so you’ll find one to suit your office. They come in steel finishes or many kinds of wood.

Consider the depth of office pedestals when purchasing them. Most will offer depths to match their desks, so make sure they’re the same if you plan on sitting them next to a desk.

Under desk storage

People often buy a pedestal that can be placed under the desk. Its drawers are a great way to gain extra space, and it fits neatly under standard office desks.

These units are often referred to as ‘low’ drawers and come with two or three drawer options and can be made from a range of materials and colours.

Tambour cupboards

Tambour storage units are a space-saving office product because they combine style and large doors. Instead of opening when space is at a premium, side sliding tambour doors can be much better.

They come in different colours and are commonly lockable for security.


The main point of open storage used in the office is bookcases. They’re a great way to mix storage with a display. Bookcases are practical and affordable storage for an office.

Many stockists will have lots of sizes of bookcases, often with adjustments for shelf layouts. 

Storage cupboards

These are popular in offices that want to take advantage of vertical space. If you’re going to keep things neat, a two-door cupboard is ideal, organized, and creatively hidden, making them a must-have for most workspaces.

How to choose an office cabinet?

office storage
File folders in a filing cabinet

Size of storage units

Those in the administration department and other paper-heavy jobs need larger storage units because they deal with tons of files and paperwork to store. Those who work on computers and strive for a paperless office will require less storage.

When planning your office layout, overestimate how much space your employees need – this will help to provide for additional flexibility and capacity if things change. A lot of paperwork comes through the office on a daily basis, so it’s worth spending some time assessing how much storage space you will need for the different kinds of materials.

Available space

The layout and how big your office is will affect the type of office storage solutions that are right for your business. It is best to be sure there is enough desk and storage space to work effectively, and you need to minimize wasted space. Mobile pedestals can be useful because they fit neatly under the desks.

Measuring the space in your office will help you decide how much space you can allocate to storage. Now take into account where larger office furniture such as desks and chairs are located, and also the number of space people will need to move around the office freely without bumping into furniture.

Consider how much space will be required to accommodate drawers and doors of your chosen storage system – consider side opening tambour storage for limited spaces.

The feel of your business

Office furniture has a huge impact on the overall working environment, and you can use it to define the feel of your business. Certain images can be made with storage furniture. For example, a traditional, professional company might have separate rooms. Storage furniture in each room will help to define it.

In more contemporary offices and open-plan offices, large storage units can be used more freely. You can think about bright colours to make a brand statement. Many employees in the same area will generate plenty of paperwork, so having a large storage solution will help.

Hot desking has gained more popularity in big cities and councils, so thinking about personal storage can be hard – mobile pedestals can be moved when people aren’t at their desks.

book shelf
White bookshelf with white and green books against a beige wall.

Reflect your brand in your office

Your office furniture reflects on your business. When choosing office storage, it’s important to pick designs and colours that match your furniture and suit your business in terms of colour, style, and brand. You can use modern finishes, styles, and materials to improve your office’s first impression of visitors and employee satisfaction.

Materials and styles

Office storage solutions are available in different materials, finishes, and styles to suit your type of business. You can choose from high-end solid wood finishes to more cost-effective MFC printed/coloured wood tones, contemporary whites, or even vibrant statement colours.

Furniture is often different in style and colour. Bright colours and materials are often seen as contemporary, while solids are considered more traditional.

Colour and finish

Choose furniture that fits with your brand. Adding bright colours to your office can increase workplace harmony and productivity while reaffirming your brand’s colour and style. 

Choosing colours that represent what your company does is a unique way to impress potential clients. For example, a creative design company may want to go for an industrial office look as it is a different way to reflect their brand.

Practical thoughts for your office’s future

Changing needs

When buying your office furniture, consider that you might want more storage in the future. So when buying your office storage solutions, think about your long-term plans.

Should your business grow, and you employ more staff members, you’ll need more storage to file a large amount of paperwork. Planning for future business expansion when you buy your office furniture can help to reduce costs in the future. Hot desking can encourage collaborative spaces instead of rows of desks, so storage needs may change to reflect that.

Budget, price, and value

Keep an eye on costs to run your business. Before you spend money on furniture, think about how much storage space you need and how much it will cost.

How to maintain office storage?

A survey by Office Max says that 77% of Americans think disorganization has negatively impacted their productivity, 53% say disorganization negatively affects their motivation.

Maintaining a professional and organized work environment can be expensive, but there are ways to keep your office clean and orderly without spending a lot of money.

Use proper storage for everything

Clutter results when you don’t have a proper place to put items. A desk that comes with drawers is a great start. However, filing cabinets, shelves, and storage cabinets allow you to neatly store all the small items needed to run your business.

Use used filing cabinets. Buy a closet with shelves to store your work items. Label everything so you can easily find it when you need it. Each shelf can be used for specific items, such as binders or pens and pencils.

Get rid of what you don’t use

To keep desktop clutter to a minimum, create a box and put any stationery item that is normally around your desk into the box. As you may need an item, please remove it from the box and return it to your desk. 

Anything that has not been used for a week should be put in a different storage area or recycled. Anything that is left in your workspace after a week should not be visible.

Move to a paperless office

Paper clutter in an office often builds up from printing forms, emails, receipts, or other physically recorded transactions. There is a wide selection of apps and programs that allow you to save your information online. Save, organize, and share it with others. This will reduce paper waste and is kinder to the environment.

What are some tips to stay organized?

organizing drawer
desk with notebook and open drawer with office tools

Shop around for cleaning supplies

You might save money by being budget-conscious when buying cleaning products and other supplies. Tips for saving on cleaning supplies:

  • Buy the store brand of the product instead of the name brand. Compare ingredients.
  • Use a subscription service or buy in bulk to save money.
  • Use a vacuum cleaner with a hard floor cleaning feature. This can mean you don’t need to buy a mop. Purchasing a flexible spray cleaner can eliminate the need to buy a separate toilet, sink and counter cleaners.
  • Use coupons and shop around for good deals.
  • Consider buying a used vacuum or carpet shampooer.
  • Use sanitary wipes as a cheap, easy way to clean surfaces between deep cleanings.

Organize your cables

The rise of technology has caused so many wires and cables. Other than being a safety hazard, these unsightly cables can cause excess dust and can also make you feel more disorganized. Attach gutters to the back of your desk and run lines through them.

You can buy decorative boxes and then cut holes in the back of them. Run the cable through those holes with the plugs coming out of the back hole. Invisible cords create the illusion of a clutter-free, wireless workplace.

Don’t eat at your desk

Eating at our desks is a bad habit that most of us are guilty of. This habit can leave behind a mess of crumbs and stickiness all over your work area. By setting up a designated eating spot, you will minimize dirt on your desk while also encouraging employees to relax.

Take turns cleaning

A clean office will help create a more efficient working environment. And it is in everyone’s best interest to help out. To make sure the cleaning is accomplished, you can make a challenge out of it. At the end of the week, the person or team with the cleanest work area gets free bagels, or other breakfast treats on Monday morning.

small ofiice
Armchair of director on a background of a window

How to maximize storage space for a small office?

By following our easy tips, you can spend more time focused on running your business rather than struggling for space.

When starting out, you might be working in a small office space. It’s more difficult than a big office and is crowded with clutter.

Tailor your office space to your needs and maximize the use of the space you have so that you can keep your focus on running your business.

Here are our top tips for maximizing small office space:

Invest in storage to boost office space

In a small office space, it is important to have a brilliant and effective storage solution.

  • Use baskets, filing cabinets, shelves, drawers, dividers, and cupboards to organize stationery and office items.
  • Closed cupboards and desk drawers can make office space look more spacious.
  • Consider storing less-used items elsewhere. Off-site storage is reasonable and useful for storing hard copies of information that must be kept.
  • Store documents and information digitally. Cloud-based storage services let you store files without taking up valuable space in small office spaces. Basic storage services from Microsoft, Google, Apple, and Dropbox will get you started. You will pay around £10 per month for 1TB of storage.

Declutter your office space

Don’t let your office get too messy, or you won’t have enough space to work in. Every week, organize your desk and get rid of any unnecessary paperwork. 

Assess whether your office supplies are useful – if you never use that ageing fax machine, then ditch it. Organize your office items based on how often you use them. If you don’t use items on a regular basis, store them away rather than keeping them on your desk.

Clear away office cables

Tangle your cables and risk a messy office or workstation. Connect to the internet wirelessly to avoid tangles. Use cable tidies or use sandwich bag ties to keep cables together. Keep lines off the floor by using cable trays and under desk wire baskets. If you’re on a budget, try DIY alternatives such as pipe insulation, binder clips, paper roll tubes, and rain gutters.

Make use of office wall space

Maximize office space by using wall hooks, cupboards, and shelves to store items. Corkboards or magnetic boards can be useful for keeping paperwork out of the way. Mirrors on the walls can give the impression of a larger office.

Use aesthetics

Small, dark offices can feel draining. Make things bright with a splash of colour, with varying hues bringing a different aesthetic. 

For example, blue brings calm, while yellow boost a more optimistic mindset. Use bright posters or prints along with plants to make your office visually pleasing. Brighten dark offices with a splash of colour. Dark furniture with light walls is the best combination for a smaller office. 

Natural light is important for productivity, so make use of the windows in your small office. If natural light is scarce, add LED lighting to create a bright office.

Buy smaller office furniture

Don’t have a large desk and chair in a small office – you probably won’t be using anything other than your laptop and phone. Put the keyboard in a drawer below the desk to free up space.

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