If you are looking to buy a new conference room table, no doubt your company has experienced changes. These changes will affect the way your conference room works, not just the way it looks. It is likely that your team will be using the room for more than just a meeting space. With television common in offices now, the conference room has become a preferred break area and meeting place for business lunches. People bring food and drinks into the conference room on a regular basis. They also set laptops, purses, and other personal items on table surfaces that must be protected and maintained.
It is wise to consider things like materials, maintenance, and space utilization before deciding on a final choice. The following guidelines will help you make these decisions quickly and cost-effectively. They will also show you how custom options often cost less than brand-name equivalents.
Your Choice of Materials
Many new conference tables are made from laminate. Laminate consists of a layer of melamine that imitates the appearance of wood, vinyl, or plastic. The primary advantage laminate offers is a full spectrum of color choices. (You can have a red, blue, or solid white conference table if you like.) Laminate is also tougher than wood. It is more resistant to scratches and is easy to clean with a damp cloth or sponge.
Solid wood is very expensive or heavy. Most conference room tables are made from veneer, which is a thin wood overlay pressed onto a particle board frame that is much easier to move around–and afford. Wood veneer is more vulnerable to damage, however, so you will need to inform your employees not to slide objects across the table. Objects left on the table for long periods of time can also create areas of discoloration, so don't let people leave items on the table after they are finished with the room. Invest in blinds or curtains that will minimize exposure to direct sunlight. You might also want to consider covering the top of your table with a glass top to fully protect its value.
Your Choice of Shape
A round table has a mythic significance and conveys an emotional appeal for equality. This is a good investment for a company that is 100% employee-owned, or where team building occurs weekly. Be aware that the round table does not make the best use of space and serves more of a psychological function than a practical one.
We seldom receive orders for square tables. When we do, they are usually for very small conference rooms that dual function as break areas. Because the middle of the table is difficult to reach, it often ends up being used for temporary storage or catered sandwiches ordered for the team.
Rectangular conference room tables make the best use of space and seat the highest number of guest. They are also the easiest table to build, which, in turn, makes them the most affordable options for companies on a budget. Cubiture can build a new rectangular conference table for your office that is up to 40% less expensive than those made by major brand manufacturers.
Two derivatives of the rectangular table–the racetrack and boat shape–add additional aesthetics to rooms that need more than simple geometry. The racetrack design features semi-circular ends. You give up 12.5% perimeter with this added appeal– but that only reduces your seating capacity by one or two people at most.
The boat-shaped conference table has the same–sometimes slightly more– perimeter as a rectangular table. This allows you to seat just as many guests, and it also add a chic, sophisticated element to your room. The boat shaped design is preferred in many law offices and accounting firms because of its definitively formal aesthetic.
An oval has slightly less perimeter than a rectangle, but it can still seat more guests than a round table. If you want to create a sense of inclusion and still leave plenty of legroom and walk space in a smaller conference area, this might be an ideal choice.
If your office is small, and if you use your conference room for a blend of meetings, task completion, and personal breaks, talk to your space planner about a modular conference table. Being able to divide a large table into smaller, personalized equivalents can allow more than one group of people to use the conference room at any given point in time.
U-Shaped and V-Shaped
If you are buying a new conference table for a room that frequently hosts guest speakers, consider combining a U-shaped table with a podium that allows your speaker to occupy a central position within the audience.
If your meetings center around video conferencing, you should invest in a V-shaped table that allows everyone to see and be seen through the monitor.
Your Choice to Pay Less
With Cubiture, custom costs less. Because we own our own factory, we can manufacture any laminate or wood veneer conference table custom to the size of your room, the number of seated guests, and the interior decor of your company.
Probably the best way to take advantage of this savings opportunity is to email us pictures of conference tables you like and send us a copy of your floor plan. We can combine the characteristics of the tables you like and size your new conference table to fit your room and meeting attendance requirements. Call or email us now to get started.