Office furniture doesn’t have to be all about desks and chairs, and it can also be about decorative items which also serve a purpose, i.e. storage. Within an office space you need several pieces of furniture which all have a function, i.e. they are used to sit at, sit on, store things in, or store things on. These are all vital pieces of an office jigsaw, and without them, not a lot of productivity will be achieved.
Office storage solutions are an integral cog in the wheel. In order to store important documents, many of which are confidential, as well as catalogues, stationery, and other items, you need different types of storage within your space.
Of course, these vary according to what is kept within them. One interesting piece of storage equipment, which has a very fashionable and multi-purpose edge, is a credenza unit.
‘What is a credenza unit’, I hear you ask. Let’s explore.
What is a Credenza Unit?
A credenza unit is a piece of office storage equipment, but it is very far removed from your regular filing cabinet, and actually looks more like a low sideboard or table.
When credenza units were first introduced, they were used as food serving tables, and they often had no legs, simply sitting low to the floor with no gap underneath. The actual purpose was to test food being served to rich people, to check there was no poison within it. The food was placed on the credenza unit and the testing was done, before it was transferred to the table to be eaten. These days, credenza units are used for much less sinister reasons!
Credenza units can have legs with a large gap underneath, they can sit low to the ground with a very small section holding it up, or it can be completely on the ground. The option you go for depends on how you want your unit to appear within your setting.
Put simply, a credenza unit is a piece of furniture which is very low sitting to the ground and is used for storage of many different items. There are usually cupboards or drawers underneath, and these fit a huge variety of uses.
How do credenza units fit into the modern office?
You might wonder how a table that was once used to store food is now found routinely in an office, but the beauty lies in the fact that credenza units are extremely versatile. They come in a huge number of different shapes, sizes, styles, and designs, and this makes them a useful choice for modern offices that want to remain a homely feel, but also want to utilise a large and subtle storage method.
Credenza units can be used in various different settings within a workplace. For instance, you could easily use a credenza unit in a meeting room. These are ideal for placing refreshments on top, e.g. water, tea, coffee, sandwiches, and other snacks, whilst also having storage space inside the cupboards and drawers underneath, which could be used to storage meeting papers, pens, notebooks, or even catering equipment, such a serviettes. Having this type of storage within your meeting room layout is very beneficial, and it avoids breaking up the feel of the space, with unsightly filing cabinets or other bulky storage options. You could also use credenza units in a reception area too. Obviously you couldn’t store anything sensitive within the unit, but you could easily use it to store magazines or other items which are routinely kept within the reception space. Again, the top section could be used for a coffee machine, water tank, etc. The main office space is also somewhere you will find credenza units. The top section can be used for decorative items, perhaps plants, or an office coffee machine, whilst the underneath section of cupboards or drawers could hold stationery or other miscellaneous items which need to be kept in the office itself.
It’s rare that you would place anything confidential in a credenza unit, basically because of the lack of locking mechanisms on the doors, but you could easily use them to storage miscellaneous items, which everyone in the office needs access to. Stationery is certainly one of the main items you’ll find within a credenza unit, perhaps reams of paper being the most common. This avoids you having to stack things on the floor, which could turn out to be a tripping hazard, as well as looking unsightly. By storing them in the cupboards of a credenza, they’re out of sight, organised, and everyone can get to them when they need to.
How about a canteen area? If you have a small canteen or staff room, a credenza unit could be very useful indeed. Of course, this takes the unit back to its original use, for catering purposes. You could easily place that aforementioned coffee machine on the unit, and the inside could be used to store serviettes, cutlery, coffee pods or granules, and other food items which are regularly used in the canteen, which don’t need to be stored in the fridge. Some credenza units even have space for a small fridge to be placed inside, which keeps the fridge out of sight, creates a more streamlined appearance to the canteen, and also allows easy access for everyone that needs it.
Things to consider when choosing storage options
Whatever storage option you go for, with credenza units being one of the most attractive, you need to think about certain elements. The storage choice needs to fit in with its purpose, e.g. if you have small, individual storage units for staff to keep their items in and avoid having a cluttered desk, these need to be large enough for what they need to store, and also need to be lockable, for bags and other personal belongings.
Of course, any type of storage unit which is going to contain sensitive information really needs to be lockable, and the keys should only be accessible by those who really need to access the information held within it. You can find many bespoke office furniture items such as this, which avoid the usual bulky filing cabinet appearance, and serve their original purpose - confidentiality.
So what factors do you need to consider with storage?
- Size - The size of your office really dictates the size of the storage options you will be able to make use of. It’s no good having a very small office and then expecting large units to fit inside without causing a hazard! Small units can easily be stacked or placed under windows, to save space and yet still have the desired purpose met.
- Accessibility - The storage option needs to be easy to reach for those who require access to the information inside. Some businesses choose to keep their storage units in a separate room, but this isn’t particularly time effective if staff need to keep getting up and going down the corridor to another room, simply to access a file. Think about placing your units where they best suit the requirements of your employees.
- Confidentiality - If the unit contains anything confidential then you need to make sure it locks at the very least. Some units also have combination locks on them. The information held within the unit should therefore only be accessible by those who are required to see it for their job.
- Number of units - How many units do you need? This depends on the amount of documents or items you need to store! If you have a lot of storage needs, think about working upwards to save space, e.g. stacking units. Credenza units are ideal for saving space because they can be used as a general office table, as well as a storage unit underneath - multi purpose!
- What you’re going to keep inside them - Do you need any additional tweaks to the unit itself? We mentioned that some credenza units are large enough to storage a small fridge inside, but obviously the back section would need to be modified in order for the plug to reach through. Think about what you’re going to store within your units and work from there.
How do you feel about credenza storage units? These are a great solution for a home office too, as many wouldn’t look out of place in a home setting, yet can be used for storage of work-related documents.
If you’re looking to change up your storage options, either in your home or commercial office, certainly give credenza units some consideration. You can easily find many options by searching for ‘office furniture London choices’, and you’ll quickly see how versatile these types of furniture can be.
Let us know your thoughts on not only credenza units but storage requirements in an office overall. Until the regular office workplace goes completely paperless and doesn’t require any type of storage equipment (not likely any time soon) then we are always going to need to think about how to keep general items, and confidential items, out of harm’s way.