Office Cupboards Buying Guide: How to pick the perfect cupboard

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A well-run organised office is one that looks tidy and is free from clutter. Desks that have paperwork piling up on top of them and books and folders strewn all over the place look messy, and they can have a negative effect on the mindset of your employees, who will feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of work that it looks like they have to do and more than likely keep putting off for as long as possible. It could be that half of the paperwork could be filed and put away, and that the most important thing that really does have to be done is at the bottom of the pile where it will be forgotten about. The realisation of this will also make the employee feel as though they are not good at their job, when it reality, they just need to organise themselves better. Clutter can also create a negative first impression for visitors, who will see the desks filled with paperwork and lose confidence in the way your company handles its work. They will want you to be organised and on top of everything so that when they phone you with an enquiry, you will easily be able to find their file and assist with their call. They won’t want to run the risk of you losing their documents or not completing essential tasks because they are at the bottom of a pile.

Conversely, a neat and tidy desk makes it easy to find everything needed to efficiently run your working day. You can make space for things that you always need to hand (pens, notepads, phone, for example) and then keep everything else in a cupboard nearby, so that you know where it is, and it isn’t so far away that you put off making the trip.

Therefore, it is important to provide enough storage so that everything can have a place and can be put away easily and then found again just as efficiently. You may have thought long and hard about the different types of storage solutions you would like to include in your office, or maybe you have barely even considered office cupboards, but either way, they are an integral part of any functioning workspace.

If you are looking to upgrade or replace your current office cupboards, consider the system you have in place now. Is it working? While some paperwork on the desks of your employees is normal (even a sign that they are keeping busy and getting things done), desks shouldn’t be cluttered and unorganised, as important documents will soon get forgotten under the chaos. If your employees are regularly getting lost under mounds of paperwork, their current storage system is not working and they may be feeling seriously strained and demotivated. You then need to decide if this is because they are not using the space they have been given efficiently, or if they genuinely do need more cupboards or other office furniture to help them get organised.

However, if you are building up a new office from scratch, it will be difficult to determine exactly what you will need in terms of office cupboards. These items of furniture are not subject to the same ergonomic conditions as desks and chairs, since few employees will be using them non-stop for eight hours a day, but there are still things to consider to ensure you purchase the right ones. A glance through our guide might help you address the issues that your company is likely to face and help you to choose the appropriate products for your office.

 

<h2>Different cupboard applications</h2>

 

It would be really easy to go out and buy a few cupboards, plant them in areas of high clutter and then transfer that clutter straight into those cupboards. Unfortunately, all this really does is relocate the mess, and does not help the bigger issue. In fact, it could make it worse, since out of sight in a cupboard means out of mind. It would be better to purchase a few different cupboards for different purposes.

 

<h3>Paperwork</h3>

The most obvious cause of clutter and stress is paperwork. A functional in-tray and out-tray on the desk can keep the most important items at hand, but anything else should be stored away until it is needed. Keep it all organised so that it can be easily sourced again, so you might want to use ring-binders, box files and expanding files, which are all great ways to store paperwork and are relatively cheap to purchase, so that you can have a different one for each project/client. Make sure to label what they are being used for and avoid having a folder marked ‘misc’, since this will end up being the dumping ground for anything you want to quickly shove into the cupboard. Once it has been stored in the Misc file, you will probably never see it again!

If all your paperwork is stored in folders, it will be easy to keep the cupboard organised and so you will only need to concern yourself with the height of the cupboard and the number of shelves needed to fit everything in. If you have a large office, with a lot of projects and clients, it might make sense to colour code and alphabetise the folders to make it easy to find what you are looking for. If you keep all folders of the same colour in one cupboard, it will also be easy to see if someone has stored a file in the wrong place.

Once every six months, it would be a good idea to allocate a member of staff to go through the files and to discard anything that is no longer relevant. You should keep all old files for good length of time – at least two years for tax purposes and in case the client wants to reopen their account. Of course, this depends on the business. If you are running a school, or anything that deals with sensitive information, it might need keeping for the length of that person’s school life. However, clearing out the old paperwork makes more room for new paperwork, which in turn means new clients!

 

<h3>Office supplies</h3>

Ah, the dreaded stationery cupboard. Some offices like to keep these storage areas under lock and key to prevent employees helping themselves to things they don’t necessarily need for work but might like to take home for personal use. Biros and notepads, in particular, have a habit of disappearing, and it doesn’t matter how many packs of these things you buy, nobody ever has one to hand when they need it!

So choosing a lockable cupboard might be important for this purpose. You will also probably need a cupboard with lots of shelving, since most items will be laid flat and so there won’t need to be too much space between the shelves. It is a good idea to purchase some baskets for small things like staples, erasers, pencils and paperclips and label these so that it is easy to keep track of what you have and what you need to reorder.

Another top tip is to keep a list of supplies on the inside of the cupboard door. When a member of staff takes something from the cupboard, they can check it off on the list and then a simple glance at the piece of paper will show you what you need more of.

You might also choose to label the shelves so that like items are kept together and are easy to find. For example, printer supplies like ink, toner and paper might go on one shelf, while notepads can be lined up in order of size on another.

 

<h3>Personal property</h3>

If yours is a workplace that prefers it if their employees weren’t able to be distracted by their mobile phones, you might want to consider purchasing a cupboard solely for their personal items. This could be placed by the door so that they can place their things inside before walking to their desk. It might be worth purchasing a cupboard with a lock for this too, since employees are likely to want to store their valuable items inside. Bags, wallets, even clothes might be stored inside, allowing your employees to bring as many things as they want to work, and not have to store them under their desk, interfering with their ergonomic space.

For example, how many people go to work with the intention of heading straight to the bar afterwards, or to the gym? Giving them this cupboard space allows them to bring a change of outfit so that they don’t have to go home before their next destination. It is definitely not an essential service to offer, but if you have a little extra money, it can add a very nice touch to your employees working day, and make their life a little easier – something that is sure to be repaid in their working attitude.

The best way to organise this sort of cupboard is to create pigeon holes for each employee and label it with their name. Use dividers or trays to do this.

 

 

Planning

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No matter how sure you think you are about what cupboards your office needs, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Whether you are fully furnishing a brand-new office or simply replacing your current office cupboards, it will take no more than half an hour of your time to take some measurements and either draw a diagram with a traditional pencil and paper or enter your dimensions into a CAD programme. From this, you can ascertain exactly how much space you have for your cupboards. Remember to include space for all office desks and chairs and their usual positioning, as well as any other products that take up space in your office. Once you have this, you need to include at least three foot of space around chairs, so that employees can comfortably move in and out from their desk, and remember to include space around doorways – you don’t want your new office cupboards getting smacked by the door every time someone walks into the room.

Then you can see how much floorspace you have for your office cupboards. Take the measurements and work out the exact size you need to fill the space you have left. Remember to leave space for the cupboard doors to open and employees to be standing around them. Purchase cupboards that are too big and I’m sure I don’t have to tell you there will be issues, but equally, purchasing cupboards that are too small for the area will lead to wasted space and your office will not be running at its full efficiency. You always want to make sure you are using your office space to its maximum ability, since it is a space you are paying for in order to run your business, but there is a fine line between filling the area and becoming over-cluttered with furniture. A good plan should help you to keep the right side of this line.

Once you know where you will be placing your furniture and your floor measurements, namely the width and depth of your cupboards, you will need to take a look at how high you can afford to have your cupboards reach. If you have shelves or noticeboards above where you would like to place your cupboards, you won’t want them to be too high or they won’t fit. You will need to factor in some space between the top of the unit and the obstruction above them so that you can also make use of the surface on top of the cupboard. If your office has slanted ceilings, you may find that these will be a hindrance to the height of your cupboard, and so this is something you will also need to take into account, but might not be so easy to see on a pencil and paper diagram. In this case, if CAD is not an option, you might want to consider creating a diorama of your office, making scale cardboard furniture. Although this is a little bit more effort, it is the best way to see exactly where your furniture will go and allows you to easily test out a few different options before settling on a final layout. And, as before, if you have lovely high ceilings and no other obstacles on the wall, then you will want to purchase the tallest unit possible, in order to maximise space.

Another minor detail that can be easily overlooked, is the size of the door frames. Taking these measurements will help in the buying process, especially if you are buying solid wood furniture, as these are rarely flat-packed and so you run the risk of them not fitting through the doors. Tall cupboards, in particular could pose an issue, while those that are especially deep may also be a problem. Taking the measurements beforehand could save you having to send furniture back. However, if you have chosen to buy flat-pack furniture and either have it installed or build it yourself, the door frame sizes should not cause you any concern.

As part of your planning, you need to assess exactly how much storage you need and how you expect these needs to grow over time. You will want your office cupboards placed in the areas of the office they will be needed the most, so look at which employees have the most clutter or accrue the most paperwork and start with placing cupboards near them. Perhaps you will be looking to purchase an office cupboard for stationery items, in which case this will likely be a cupboard in high demand and so you will be looking for a space for a large cupboard near the centre of the office. You will want this to be as accessible as possible to the maximum number of employees in order to reduce the amount of wasted time walking backwards and forwards to this cupboard. Matching your cupboard to the individual employees needs and remembering to factor in future needs will ensure you choose the most functional and practical products. If you are not sure exactly what those requirements are, then it is a good idea to talk to your employees and discuss how they would use any potential new cupboards. Listening to them and making notes will not only help you to pinpoint the best items of furniture, but it will also make them feel as though their needs are important, which is a great motivator and the sign of a good employer. Of course, you will still have the final say, but your choices could be swayed in a better direction by listening to those who will actually be using the cupbords.

Budget

When making your plan, it is wise to consider your budget at the same time. Simply going out and purchasing the cheapest items you can find is always going to be a recipe for disaster. Cheap items tend to represent a false economy as they don’t last as long as you need them to and are often not quite fit-for-purpose. Of course, that is a generalisation, and you should take each product by its own merits, looking for value for money rather than cheap and cheerful, but setting a budget will help you to purchase the best items you can afford.

Equally, you don’t want to run out and buy the most expensive items either. Most companies would find this a wasteful exercise (unless they are a particularly large organisation with huge profit margins) and a high cost doesn’t always translate into the most functional product. So take some time to consider your needs and work to align this with a budget agreed by your finance department.

As office cupboards tend to be rather bulky items, even when flat-packed, be sure to factor in the cost of delivery and installation when making your purchases. Some companies do offer this as part of the service, while others will charge you more if you want them to assemble your products for you. Even if you decide to build them yourself, you will have to consider the lost work hours that will accumulate because of this, particularly if you have rather a lot of furniture to assemble.

You should also look to check if the products you buy come with any warranties or guarantees. Usually these are included on expensive purchases as standard, but one or two companies do charge you for this and so it is worth factoring this into your budget.

Aesthetics

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No matter what type of office furniture it is that you are looking to buy, aesthetics will always play a big part of your final purchase decision. Your office cupboards are no exception, although they are unlikely to be the focal point of a room. It is more likely that you will have chosen your office chairs and office desks prior to your cupboards and so you will want products that fit nicely into your office floorplan while complementing the current furniture.

The ideal office cupboards will sit quietly at the side of the room, with the desk layout being the main focus. While their main purpose is a functional need for storage, they should still be good quality and well-made, in order to avoid any unsightly marks or scratches. They may not be the most important item in the room, but if they look worn and are starting to fall apart, they will stand out for the worst reasons.

If, for some reason, you are beginning to furnish a brand-new office and have decided to start with the cupboards first, then you will need to take a number of things into consideration. Firstly, what colour are the walls and carpet? Wooden or wood veneer cupboards are usually pretty good at complementing most office styles and have a professional finish.  Products such as the NEXT DAY Flare Desk High Cupboards come in a variety of wood shades and have the added bonus of being one item in a range of Flare products. As well as other cupboard styles, they also have matching desks and cabinets, so you can ensure your whole office is perfectly coordinated and stylish.

Materials

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While solid wood is considered to be the very best material for office furniture, it does come with its limitations. Firstly, it is extremely expensive, since most products have been hand-crafted. Secondly, the wood has a tendency to warp if it becomes too hot, too cold or damp. This means any wooden cupboards would need to be kept away from air conditioning units, drafty windows and radiators, and this would be something else you would need to consider in your earlier planning. Finally, it has the potential to pick up numerous stains and knocks that can only be removed by sanding down the wood. While a bit of wear and tear is likely, some people like that each product comes with its own unique character and consider the odd dent to be an element of this. One thing that is certain, is that solid wood furniture can last a lifetime and longer, and many family items become heirlooms – something that cannot be said for other furniture materials.

If the environment is a concern for your business, you could look at purchasing reclaimed wooden cupboards like the Accrington Reclaimed Wood Cupboard. This sort of furniture would look fantastic in a modern office that wants to create a bohemian vibe, but they are also an essential purchase for any business that claims to have a love for the environment or wants to change the world. They offer all the same long-lasting properties as traditional solid wood furniture (and also come with the same upkeep) but at a significantly cheaper price. They do look recycled though, and so this style of cupboard might not work in every office, but would certainly make for an excellent conversation starter in the right workplace. Given the recent trends for green and earthy colours in the workplace, reclaimed wood is extremely fashionable right now. In the meantime, one less tree has been chopped down to make your furniture. Stick a pot plant on top and your office will be extremely vogue and some office greenery has been proven to increase productivity and purify the air.

Wood veneer, on the other hand, certainly does not come with any sort of unique qualities, but it does provide the stylish, traditional look of solid wood for a much cheaper price. The products are usually machine-manufactured and finished with an MDF layer to make them more durable. This also means they can be painted in a wide variety of shades and wood veneer does tend to be the most popular option for office furniture.

It is also possible to purchase office cupboards made from metal. While most items of furniture will include an element of metal somewhere in their creation, even if it is only the nuts and bolts used to hold it together, products made completely from metal offer a stylish and extremely durable alternative to the traditional wooden cupboards. They are thought to be better value for money thanks to their long-lasting nature and have a more contemporary look. The Silverline M:Line Tambour Cupboards are a great option if you have decided metal is the material for you, since the cupboards come in a range of different sizes and colours, allowing you to choose the product that best fits your needs. Like the Flare items, Silverline also have a wide range of matching items, making them perfect for kitting out an entire office.

Brand Identity

If you have worked hard to build up a brand identity, colour is likely to be important to you. Even if you have not been in business long, your brand is something that is essential to growth, and therefore should be considered in everything that you do.

With this mind, you might choose to purchase cupboards that reflect this brand. Take a moment to think of some big companies. When you think of Coca-Cola, for example, what colour stands out? That bright red shade has been key in making the business a household name, and whether you drink it or not, you would surely recognise Coca-Cola red if you saw it.

That it how the soft drink manufacturer has managed to branch out into other merchandise. You might not be at this stage with your business now, but with the right branding, who knows what the future holds? So, maybe this is a theme that you would like to run with in your office cupboards.

In this case, the Compact Commercial Cupboards would be ideal, since they come in a variety of different colours. Choose from a silver, black or white frame, and then blue, green, red, silver, white or yellow doors to best suit your identity. What you want, is for visitors to come to your office and immediately be able to associate the space to your brand. You cannot promote yourself too much.

Another benefit to using bright colour, is that it will lift the mood of your employees. Colour therapy is a complicated and well-researched concept that is often used in interior design to help create the right atmosphere. However, when broken down, it has been shown that bright colours generally help bring positivity and happiness to a space, which is great news for employee morivation and output.

Uniformity

Buying a lot of different products from one range of furniture is a great idea as it creates a sense of uniformity in an office environment. However, If you have a large business base, with lots of different rooms, it pays to mix it up a bit. Otherwise the overall effect can be quire boring. It is best to create little bubbles of uniformity in each room, but perhaps sampling different ranges in the reception area than in accounts, for example. When looking at cupboards in particular, the different storage needs will necessitate different styles of cupboard anyway, as will the atmosphere that you intend to create in the room, and so this allows you a bit more creative freedom.

 

<h3>Consider Feng Shui</h3>

When putting your plans in place, you might also like to consider how it affect the energy of the room. De-cluttering and organising the office is key to a good energy, and since you are looking at buying storage, you are already half-way there – well done! According to Feng Shui rules, this will help bring clarity, creativity, efficiency and abundance to your office, while also helping to reduce stress.

When it comes to cupboard style, you should choose items with more rounded corners, or, if this is not possible, sharp edges should be kept away from traffic flow to prevent stress and irritability becoming the main energy of the office. It may not be a priority for you, but if you are able to readjust your office plan to allow for this, you could have a happier, more productive office.

 

Cabinet or Cupboard

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If you have done all of the above, and have a good idea of your storage needs, the first thing you might like to consider is whether you would prefer cabinets or cupboards, or maybe a mixture of the two in your office. The main distinction between these is that a cabinet usually includes drawers, whereas a cupboard does not. While drawers can definitely be a useful addition to a unit, you need to seriously think about whether or not they are necessary in your workspace. If you already have desks that have drawers incorporated into their design, or come with mobile pedestals, you might consider having extra drawers a waste of space. What else will you really need to put in there? That extra room could be used to house taller folders or large books that you might have.

If you decide drawers are an essential addition to your cupboard, you might like to purchase something like the NEXT DAY Force Double Door Combination Cupboard With Drawers And Shelves. This versatile design is tall, making use of dead wall space and even incorporating shelves for items that you might like to have on show, or the most important folders that you need to always have in sight. There is a whole range of Force furniture, so if you already have desks or other items of furniture in this style, this item will coordinate nicely with those.

If you would prefer a cupboard without drawers, you might like the classic style of the Commerce II Office Cupboards. They come in five different sizes so you can choose the one that best fits your needs and in beech, oak or white finishing, so you can ensure your cupboards match the rest of your office furniture.

Types of doors

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Chances are, that the type of doors you might want for your office cupboards hasn’t much concerned you until now. Many people assume that their cupboards will come with the typical doors that swing open and shut, and are often held in place with a magnet mechanism, like the NEXT DAY Reflections Cupboards, which also have a lock to allow you to keep any expensive possessions safe.  However, tambour doors are also gaining in popularity.

Tambour doors are made up of slats that roll neatly in the side of the cupboard (when the doors were first created, they used to roll to the top of the cupboard. Side openings are thought to use up less space, are less prone to failure and easier for people of all heights to manoeuvre). One obvious advantage of these is that they do not have doors that swing open, so they will fit better in areas where space is tighter. On the flip-side, the doors are more likely to get stuck and so they must be treated with care to ensure a longer-life. If you think tambour cupboards might be a good addition to your office, then consider something like the Triumph Everyday Tambours. These steel cupboards come in a range of sizes and have a classy powder-coated finish.

Alternatively, you might prefer glass doors which allow you to always see what is inside the cupboard. While these do mean that you will always want your cupboard to look neat and organised (there will be no hiding of clutter in these products), they are ideal to help you quickly locate items or put awards and certificates on display. A cupboard like the Triumph Everyday Glass Sliding Door Cupboard would fit the bill nicely.

Wheels or no wheels

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This is another decision that you may not have made yet, but you have a number of options in this field. Firstly, you might decide to purchase wall-mounted cupboards like the Viewcab Visible Storage Wall Mounted Cupboard – 88 Series, in which case, there will obviously be no need for wheels. Wall-mounted or fitted cupboards have the benefit of not taking up any essential floor space, and so can be useful when this is tight. If you have an office design in mind and are adamant that it won’t be changing for the lifetime of your company, then these are a good choice.

Alternatively, you can purchase free-standing units, and this is when you will have to take the wheel option into account.

The bonus of having caster wheels on the base of your cupboards is that it makes it easy to rearrange furniture, if for any reason, you need to change the layout of your office. If, for example, you need to make room for a temporary employee, or you are just expanding your current staffing numbers, those wheels can mean the difference between simply pushing the cupboard to one side or needing to empty out the cupboard and getting one or two people to help you lift it to another location. However, if you are intending to move the cupboard up a flight of stairs, or over a raised door frame, the wheels won’t be much use and you will have to ask for help anyway. A cupboard like the Interface Colour Mobile Combination Cupboards would be ideal, or maybe the Mobile First Aid Cupboard, particularly in a first-aid situation, since it is small and light and easy to push to wherever it is needed. Alternatively, you can purchase the castor wheel sets separately and attach them to a piece of furniture of your choice.

The only problem with castors is that they don’t take much to make them move. An employee might lean against the cupboard, or slam the door too hard and it will cause it to shift out of position. It might only be an inch to the side, but repeated over time it could create a space issue for an unlucky employee. You might also feel that once you have your office cupboards in place, that will be where you will want them to stay, and in that case, you have a much wider choice of cupboards at your disposal. The Triumph Everyday Essential Double Door Cupboards are some of the more popular products and are sturdy, lockable and extremely durable. Once these have been put in place, they won’t move anywhere!

One, two, three or four shelves?

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Choosing the correct number of shelves for your situation can be difficult. Those who are predicting room for future storage needs will probably assume that they should buy as many shelves as possible, while those with low storage demands might choose just one shelf. This is probably a fair estimate, but you also need to consider the space inside your cupboard and the types of things you will be looking to store. For example, if you have chosen a fairly short cupboard, like the 1000m Bisley Contract Steel Stationery Cupboards, and you want to use it to store A4 folders, more than one shelf might not give you the room needed to comfortably fit these in. Equally, if you have a lot of A5 books or stationary baskets, even in that small cupboard, you might want to put two or three shelves so that everything fits neatly and you can make the best use of the space you have. Ideally, you would want to purchase cupboards that allow you to customise the space inside by moving the shelves into the desired position, like the Alpha Plus Side Tambour Cupboards. These cupboards actually require you to purchase the shelves separately, so you can buy as many as you need and place them in the position that works for you. Remember to factor the cost of the shelves into your budget, but this does give you full control over your storage space, meaning that you can adjust the space inside as often as you need to in order to store different items.

Reviews and aftersales

So, you’ve chosen your office cupboards, paid for them, had them delivered and installed, only to find out that the shelves wobble inside the unit or that the top panel is paper-thin and liable to crack under the slightest weight. These are just examples; there could be any number of problems with your unit.

The best option, of course, would be to avoid purchasing furniture that is low-quality in the first place. But obviously, the manufacturer is not going to tell you that they have made an inferior product, that’s not how the world of furniture sales works! But you do still have the option of looking for online reviews, which will give you unbiased views on the products you are looking to buy. Be suspicious of any overly gushing reviews – these are office cupboards, not something luxurious or exciting, and companies have been known to pay people to write positive reviews for them. It is likely that you will find out more about a product by any negative reviews left online (or lack of them), since unhappy customers are statistically more likely to complain than happy customers are to praise. If you can’t find anything negative written about your product, and it seems to fit your needs, then you can make a comfortable decision based on this. Even if you do find a negative review, try to read it with an unbiased mind – just because something didn’t work for one person, doesn’t mean it won’t work for you, but it does help to have all the information before buying.

Ask people you know for their opinion on a company too. First-hand information is invaluable, and this might be the only way that you will really get an honest positive opinion on a product or the business. If someone you trust has had a good experience of a company, then you can shop with confidence.

And if you can find nothing but praise about your product, then you need to take a look at how the company deals with aftersales care. Do a little research about the company itself, and read reviews left on their social media pages or on blogs. If someone has had a problem with returning a product or with claiming on insurance with the company, these may be red flags telling you to avoid dealing with this business. Again, consider each review carefully – it is always possible that the customer was the one in the wrong, after all!

The company’s website should also state their after-sales policy. You need to be able to contact the company with any questions, feedback or complaints after they have sold you your office cupboards, and you need to know that in the event of a faulty item, you can return the cupboards. If the website doesn’t state that this is offered as part of the service, then you might prefer to shop elsewhere.

Keeping your furniture looking its best

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The type of material that your cupboards are made from will determine how you should look after them. If you have chosen solid wood pieces, then you will need to keep the furniture out of direct sunlight, as this will quickly bleach the colour and it is impossible to regain the shade once this has happened. You will also need to regularly dust with a damp cloth to keep it looking its best; once or twice a week is fine. Dusting with a dry cloth can scratch, and as real wood furniture is particularly sensitive, it is best to dampen it with a spritz of water first (never spray the water directly onto the cupboard). It is best to treat wood veneer in much the same way, although if your cupboard has a laminate finish, you should use specialised sprays to clean without leaving the surface streaky or clouded.

Never use silicone-based sprays on solid wood, instead look for a wax-based polish that will help you to buff and shine the surface.

Metal furniture is more resistant to knocks and stains, but you still need to treat it with care. Combine a mild washing-up liquid with water and use a soft cloth to clean the surface. If your cupboard becomes rusty, you can lightly sand the area and use a touch-up paint to cover the area. You can also apply wax to add an extra layer of protection to the cupboard.

Although cupboards are not as prone to spills and stains as other pieces of office furniture, it still pays to keep on top of the cleaning. They have the same propensity to collecting dust and so should be wiped regularly to keep them looking clean and prevent them becoming a hazard to sufferers of asthma or other dust allergies.

And finally, no matter what your furniture is made from, if you are going to place a drink on top, use a coaster! It doesn’t matter if it is hot or cold, once that ring is on the cupboard, you might never get it completely off!

What are your storage needs?

If clutter and disorganisation are becoming the norm in your office, chances are that a few cupboards will make the world of difference. But you need to consider whether it is cupboards you need, or if you would be better served by filing cabinets, under-desk pedastals or if a few shelves is all you need. What storage systems do you already have in place? Do these need replacing or can they be put to better use in order to save yourself some money on new furniture. Buying more products can often seem like the answer, but if you are not making the best use of what you already have, then chances are that you won’t make the best use of new furniture either and your money will be wasted. A quick reorganisation of your current storage systems could free up space and help you work more efficiently.

Alternative storage options

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There are many other ways to store your office clutter – cupboards are just one option. Filing cabinets like the Silverline Kontrax Filing Cabinets are ideal if your employees work with a lot of paperwork. Although folders are great and can be easily stored in a cupboard, they have their limitations. Filing cabinets usually give you a lot more room to organise your paperwork and make it easy to find exactly what you are looking for.

Another alternative would be to purchase bookcases or shelving units like the NEXT DAY Solar Plus Bookcases. Bookcases are much like cupboards, although they don’t have the doors and so need to be kept tidy and organised to avoid looking messy. They are best used for books and folders, since piling up stationary on a bookcase can look very cluttered and things can easily get knocked off. With books and folders, however, the lack of doors on a bookcase makes it easier to see exactly what you need at a glance.

If it is awards and certificates that you are looking to store, see our guide to display and presentation furniture, like the Shield® Wall Display Cabinet which will help you choose the best cabinets for your items. Alternatively, you could purchase low rise cupboards and place these awards on top. If you have no need to worry about such items going missing, this could be a great motivational move, showing your employees that you have full trust in them and that they will do the best for your business. Unless your storage needs mean that you can only buy the biggest cupboards possible, this is a very viable option. You could also purchase a combination cupboard that gives you the glass doors of a cabinet on top, with the wooden doors of a cupboard on the bottom, keeping your prized items safe but on display and probably saving you the bit of money you would have spent on a separate storage area. The NEXT DAY Force Double Door Combination Cupboard With Drawers And Shelves even come with a couple of drawers for the ultimate in versatility.

Your office should be a motivating, inspiring area that you enjoy coming into. You spend so much of your time there that it would be a shame to think of it as ugly or dull, and if that is your impression, then potential clients will almost certainly feel the same way. Create a space that you are proud of and your enthusiastic energy will rub off on your employees and visitors. Whatever office cupboards you choose, one thing is certain: you will be using them a lot! Make the right decisions now and they will be some of the most hard-working pieces of furniture in your office, giving you years of service and complementing your office set-up.

John

Head of cool things at Office Furniture
Bit of this, bit of that but love cats.

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Author: John