How To Measure A Desk: All You Need To Know

How To Measure A Desk

Finding new furniture that fits your office space perfectly can be a challenge. It might be overwhelming to design your new office space, particularly when you are managing various office work areas, bookshelves, platforms, meeting tables, and then some.

To help make the purchase of your office furniture as smooth as possible, this article will guide you on how to measure a desk and pick the best desk for your workplace. 

Tips on How to Measure a Desk

Getting the right office desk goes beyond the style. You want to ensure that the size of your desk suits your office space, and how you’ll be utilizing it.

You want to make sure that you know how to take measurements of the office desk you want to get rid of or the one you want to purchase. When people measure furniture, they often confuse the width, height, and depth. If you mix up these measurements, you may end up buying a desk that doesn’t suit your office.


The width measurement is taken from left to right when you’re in front of the desk (the position you’d be in while working at the desk). 


This is the measurement taken from the bottom of the legs to the top of the standing desk, whether that be to the table top or to the top of the hutch.


The depth is measured from the back to the front while viewing the desk as if you’re using it. 

Getting accurate measurements of the desk will help you to ensure that it will fit the space you have for it. 

Size of a Standard Office Desk

Below are the suggested sizes of a standard office desk that’s suitable for most at-home and at-work offices.


A desk that’s 2 foot wide should be the ideal minimum width for your standard office desk. Any smaller than this and you’ll struggle to utilize your desk for daily work tasks.

Consider the intended location of your desk, what hardware you want to mount on it, and how often you’ll use it. Assuming you’ll be using your desk for work, you’ll want a desk that’s wide enough to accommodate all of your work papers, computers, pens, and other office supplies.

If you have restricted space in your office, consider getting a smaller desk and a file organizer to keep supplies and papers in. This will give you the same room for storage as a bigger desk would. Standard office desks come in a width range of 2 to 5 feet.


Most office desks will generally be around 2 ½ feet high, which is generally a great height for people across the board. That said, if you’re taller than 6’0, you may want to consider getting an adjustable office desk that can raise and lower to suit your needs.

Height-adjustable desks allow users to move the top of the desk so that it can be used in a standing or sitting position. Height-adustable desks are a great choice if you’re the type of person who doesn’t like to sit at your desk all day.

No matter if you choose an adjustable or a conventional desk, you should make sure that the desk height is suitable for your height and that you can either sit or stand without bending over when working at it.


The depth of a desk is often overlooked compared to its height and width, but a desk’s depth can be the difference between having enough room for your computer and desktop equipment.  Having a desk with enough depth guarantees you have adequate room to work without feeling cramped.

The ideal depth of an office desk is somewhere between 2 and 2 ½ feet. Taking your available space into consideration, it’s a good idea to choose a desk that has more room than you think you’ll need. Many standard office desks have a 3-foot depth, which is ideal for those who need optimal space for multiple monitors, a printer, and other larger office supplies.

Things to Do Before Choosing Your Office Desk Size

1. Take Measurements of Your Available Space

If you’re wondering how to measure a desk, it’s likely that you’ve thought about where in your office you’d like to put your new desk. It’s important to know the dimensions of your entire office space. Keep in mind that eyeing your office and trying to determine its dimensions is a recipe for a cramped office space. Take the time to measure out your office with a measuring tape and record the width, depth, and height. 

Suppose you aim to put your desk against the wall. Measure from the wall, and decide on a desk with a depth that’s appropriate for your office. Consider your office chair, room to walk, and how your door opens against your would-be desk before making a final decision. 

Determining the dimensions of your office will give you a good idea of how you can use any available space for your desk.

2. Know the Dimensions of Your Doorways and Staircases

Most desks that you order online will come in parts that need to be assembled, but sometimes, if you buy in-store, desks can be transported in one piece. In this case, knowing that your new desk will fit your office isn’t enough – you’ll also need to ensure that it can fit through your doorways and up staircases (if applicable). 

Measure the width and height of your doorways and staircases to see if they will be able to accommodate the desk. Even if your desk does need to be assembled, consider measuring your entryways regardless. If you decide to sell your desk or move it to another room, you probably won’t want to take it apart and reassemble it.

3. Know the Desk Size

When looking for a new office desk, you’ll need to find its exact measurements. Usually, desk measurements are indicated under a details tab or they might be found in the item’s description if you’re online.

Compare the dimensions of the desk or desk you’re considering with your office measurements. Remember to account for walkways and space for your chair. If you’re worried about a desk fitting your room like you want it, try marking out the dimensions of the desk in your room using painter’s tape.

This will give you something visual to look at before making a final decision on desk size. 

What to Consider When Choosing a New Desk

How To Measure A Desk

Now that you know how to measure a desk and everything you need to do to choose the best desk size for your office, there are some other features to keep in mind before deciding on a new desk.

Space Available

Consider how much space you want to take up in your office or room with a desk. 

Do you want a more minimalistic look or do you want a large desk that catches your eye as soon as you walk in the room? Do you have enough room for a full-sized desk and hutch, or do you need a smaller desk for a laptop and a few pens? 

What You Do With the Desk

Knowing what purpose you want your desk to serve will play a huge role in the type of desk and the size of the desk you buy. 

If you need a desk for work, consider a desk that’s large enough to fit your laptop or desktop, a printer, and other workspace items. If you’re a gamer or looking for a studio desk, you’ll likely want a bigger desk for comfortable movement and placement. If you’re a student, you may be able to get away with a smaller desk suitable for your laptop. 

Your Office Chair

Office chairs vary in height and width, so when deciding on a desk, make sure that your office chair is short enough for the seat to slide under the desk. You’ll also want to ensure that your new desk gives you enough room to move your chair around comfortably.

Your Budget

One of the most important considerations when buying a new desk is your budget. Determine your budget and then find the desks that fit within that range. If you’re looking for a temporary option, you may want to consider a cheaper desk that won’t burn a hole in your pocket. 

On the other hand, if you’re looking for furniture that could last you years of use, spending a little more up-front may be worth the investment. 

What You Want to Put On Your Desk

If you’re aiming to put more on your desk than a laptop, determine how much desktop space you’ll need for all of your equipment. You want a desk that has enough surface space to organize your supplies while still leaving you enough room to work or play.

Shape of the Desk You Want

Decide if you have a shape preference for your desk. Do you need an L-shaped desk to fit in the corner of your office or room or would a rectangular desk suit your space better?

Final Thoughts

By now, you should know everything you need to know about how to measure a desk, determine the space you have available, and which desk type would be the most suitable for the space you have.  

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