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What Are the Different Types of Cubicle Panels?

By Sheri Cyprus
Updated: May 16, 2024

Cubicle panels are available in a wide variety of styles, sizes and materials. There are systems of cubicle panels designed to create rows of cubicles for large work places as well as individual pieces made for small offices to divide a single desk area from the rest of the space. The panels may be budget or deluxe as well as straight or curved or tall or short.

Curved cubicle panel designs are often sold individually. Many of them are padded and covered in cloth. They may have either metal or wood feet to keep these free-standing panels upright and sturdy. The padded fabric may be a solid color or an overall print. A padded cubicle often has the advantage of being able to be used as a bulletin board with the use of push pins to hold notes and papers onto its inner wall.

Straight panels may be padded or made of metal or laminate. Laminate is the synthetic coating that is on many inexpensive kitchen cabinets. It's a popular and durable material that is usually easy to clean with just a damp cloth or sponge. White laminate panels have a utilitarian, or plain, look, yet can help brighten up darker office spaces with their light color. As an alternative to light laminate panels, dry erase board cubicle walls can be used; these can be both fun and functional for a creative, modern office space as workers can write on each wall, erasing as they go.

Some kinds of cubicle panels have transparent or semi-transparent window-like spaces around the top of the walls to filter in more light. These can look quite attractive, yet the glass or acrylic window parts don't buffer sound as well as other cubicle panel materials. Materials such as foam padding and cork can make excellent sound buffer walls for cubicles.

A power supply panel may have electrical wires through it that are connected to run computers and telephones. Another common alternative is a pole system of electrical power located in the ceiling to connect office machines. Electricians create both types of power supply panels for safety and to hide the cords as well as possible. In addition to different widths, panel designs are also available in varied heights. Lower cubicle panels allow workers to see and communicate face to face, while higher panel designs offer more privacy as well as sound-absorbing qualities.

SmartCapitalMind is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By anon961471 — On Jul 17, 2014

Anyone know what percentage of the cubicle is made from metal/steel parts? About what percentage of this industry is derived from metal components?

By sunnySkys — On Sep 12, 2011

@ceilingcat - The idea of open classrooms sounds pretty ridiculous to me too! And I have some personal experience with the matter.

My office is actually constructed kind of like open classrooms. The whole office is open, so you can see and hear everyone. The only concession to privacy is that I have a partition on either side of my desk that basically does nothing. It's not very tall and it's see through!

Luckily I like my office-mate, but for the purposes of getting actual work done I wish we would get some more cubicle panels and make actual cubicles.

By ceilingcat — On Sep 12, 2011

When I was in elementary school the school used a bunch of cubicle panels to make classrooms. You see, my school was built in the 70s according to the theory of "open classrooms." So there were no walls! You could hear and see everything that was going on in the classrooms next to you.

Needles to say, this was very distracting. The school finally decided this particular educational theory was wrong, so they used padded cubicle panels to create classrooms. I'm not sure if they ever put actual walls in though.

By manykitties2 — On Sep 11, 2011

Office cubicle panels don't have to be ugly. You would be surprised at the number of options available for those who are willing to put in a bit of time searching for pieces that you can change yourself.

I work at an office that produces some popular blogs and while we like our privacy, we like our office to have personality and style. There are so many kinds of cubicle panel systems that you can make an office pretty much any shape you can imagine. Also, with good sewing skills, cubicle wall panels can easily be made into works of art.

By MrSmirnov — On Sep 11, 2011

When I was putting in my home office I actually purchased some office cubicle partitions so that I would have some privacy from my family. Our home isn't large, so I wasn't able to have an entire room to myself.

To save on the cost of setting up my home office I actually found used cubicle panels for sale at a business liquidation store and ended up outfitting my office for a very low price.

Some of the other things I picked up to make my little cubicle more comfortable included a selection of nice second-hand furniture and some plants for decoration.

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