Office or Cubicle: Which is Best?

New businesses are forced to take into consideration – office or cubicle: which is best? If you have done any research on the topic, we are certain you have found conflicting answers. Ultimately, of course, the choice is up to you and your employees, but we will try to help you along the way.

At, our goal is to assist large and small businesses with the information and resources necessary to locate money saving solutions for all their furniture requirements.

Recently, we visited EthoSource in Morgantown, PA. They are a wealth of information and are nationally recognized leaders in the office furniture liquidation industry. While there, we asked them the all-important question, which is best? Offices or cubicles? Here’s what they had to share with us. 

Office or Cubicle: Which is Best?

Cubicles versus Offices

Believe it or not, this debate has been going on since 1967. This is when cubicles first started appearing in workplaces. Initially they were designed to generate higher levels of business efficiency. Some argue that this didn’t happen. However, cubicles do have some notable benefits. These include:

  • Increases in opportunities. Because those utilizing cubicles are often spaced close together, there are opportunities to learn from one another.
  • Improved productivity. Since cubicles are not completely enclosed and can be readily viewed by management walking through. Many believe that employees are less likely to goof off.
  • Enhanced relationships with colleagues. Employees sitting nearby one another have the ability to build relationships and can readily bounce ideas off one another.
  • Freedom for personal expression. Employees that don’t have to share cubicles with others are provided the opportunity to utilize their wall space for personal expression which alters the mood of the cubicle design.

So, what about offices then? Offices are often seen as the best idea. Unfortunately, it is generally quite difficult to provide every employee with his or her own office. Yet, opting for offices over cubicles provides you with some benefits as well. Here are some of those benefits:

  • Serious privacy. You can always shut the door to your office.
  • Status recognition. Offices are typically provided to those who have accomplished something.
  • Potentially more productivity. Many people require private space and silence to get the most out of their workday.
  • Having the ability to close a door around your space contributes to both a sense of safety and even job security.

What’s the Verdict?

It would appear that both cubicles and offices have potential benefits. Of course, they each have their own uniquely negative aspects as well. There has been a good deal of research to suggest that cubicles are a sore spot in the business world. People complain about the lack of sound privacy specifically. Yet, even those who work in private offices complain about this issue. Noise seems to be a problem regardless of which set up you opt for.

To best answer the office or cubicle question, our recommendation to you is that you ask your employees. If you have the ability to provide individuals with office space based on your company’s layout, do so. If not, perhaps you should opt for cubicles with high walls that give employees a sense of more private space.