What does your Office Reception Area say about your Business?

The Network

Your reception area should immediately make a statement about your company’s vision and values.

It’s the very first thing people see when they enter your company office. First impressions are vital so this makes your reception area an important part of your business.

It should reflect your corporate brand values and create a powerful first impression. If a visitor is met with peeling paint, faded furniture and dismal decor, it can serve as a signal that you don’t care about your brand, business or people.

Plain walls, for instance, say very little about who you are or what you do…use the brand-wall behind a reception desk to show-case your corporate timeline or product imagery.

So, what’s the first thing you should consider when designing your reception space? The experience you want your visitors to have when they arrive!

Let’s think about some broad business categories and consider where your business fits in:

Manufacturing | Design | Sales | Service |

What do you want your potential customers and suppliers to think of you and your business when they arrive?

Make sure you have enough company literature available for people to flick through whilst waiting. If your company generates a lot of press, it’s always a good idea to have a smart press book available on a coffee table packed full of recent news.


Your customers – they should be able to clearly see what your business stands for (quality, innovation, easy to work with.)

Your suppliers – they need to be reassured your business is successful (you can pay your bill,) efficient (clean and tidy) and has longevity (indications you have long term work in the pipeline.)

The Design? – should be dynamic. It should give your company the feeling of being modern, innovative, pioneering and driven. Key things to include:

  • A comfortable space, not too large and not cluttered.
  •  Your corporate identity is strongly visible.
  • Branding is visible, bold but simple.
  • Furniture is functional and stylish.
  • Interesting fabric used on seating options.
  • Colours used can reflect logo or company colours.

(E.g. advertising, marketing and digital agencies, media and film, fine art, interior design, architecture.)

Your customers – they should be inspired by what your business stands for (inventive, highly creative, contemporary, collaborative, eager, and agile.)

Your suppliers – will more than likely be creatives too so if you are faithful to your business’ vision and values, then your business will appeal to them also.

The Design? – should be bold. Key things to include:

  • Show your environment is fun and interactive.
  • Colour is a key ingredient. Either a lot of it or none at all.
  • Corporate identity is present in an inventive way.
  • Branding is bold. It could be boldly simple or quite loud.
  • Trendy choice of furniture, finishes and fittings.
  • Iconic pieces are featured.
  • Coffee/beverages are self-help – a fun experience.
  • Staff are chatty and friendly.
  • Connectivity to nature via the use of greenery and plants.
  • Preloved or second hand furniture used

Sales (Wholesale + Retail)


Your customers – they are very likely to place an order or make a purchase before they leave your reception or store. They must be able to see and feel what your business stands for (quality, durability, variety, service.) Your customer should be able to clearly see what you sell and why they should but from you. They should be able to touch and feel the products you sell. Retail and wholesale space design is as much about the psychology of selling as it is about making the actual sale itself.

Your suppliers – they need to be reassured you are promoting and selling their product (it is on display and their promotional materials are visible,) you believe in their product (display images of you and your employees using and selling their product,) you are committed to their product long term (you deserve to retain your sales contract.)

The Design? – should be organised. Key things to include:

  • Maximise your vertical space.
  • Most popular or newest items near the front.
  • Colour is a key ingredient.
  • Corporate identity is present.
  • Branding is bold. It could be boldly simple or quite loud.
  • Clear, organised displays.
  • Staff are friendly and knowledgeable.

(E.g. accountants, lawyers, banking and money related institutions, medical suites)

Your customers – they should be confident in what your business stands for (organised, prosperous, established, efficient, and confident.)

Your suppliers – one of the few industries whose suppliers are also service oriented but rarely visit your office. The right first impressions are vital to service businesses. This makes your reception area a very important part of your business. Key things to include:

  •  Large, open plan space.
  • Careful consideration of Corporate Identity.
  • Brand presence is subtle but unmistakably and professionally present.
  • The colour scheme is submissive yet stylish.
  • Furniture is comfortable and robust.
  • Reception desk is easily recognised.
  • Coffee and tea service is available.
  • Marketing material is visible, either electronically or in printed format.
  • Impeccably clean space.
  • Access to meeting spaces and toilets straight off reception. No wandering the halls for visitors!

Only a few seconds after arriving in your office, your visitors will form an opinion of your company. Whether you work from home or you have a commercial space, make sure the first impression says the right thing about your business.

For help with your reception and office design, contact Belhams Interiors.