The Complete Guide to Whiteboards & Bulletin Boards
Office boards come in many styles, which means there are many options and narrowing it down can be tough. First, consider what type of room you’ll use the board in and how often you’ll use it. Next, read our comprehensive guide to find the best board for you and your office.
Whiteboards have a glass, melamine, or porcelain surface meant to be written on with a dry erase marker. You can find whiteboards in any area of the office as they’re ideal for expressing temporary messages to coworkers.
Chalkboards, otherwise known as blackboards, are green or black and meant to be written on with chalk. Although chalkboards were once commonplace, they have been widely replaced by whiteboards over the last several years and are now rarely seen in office settings.
Interactive boards have a touch screen and work with projectors to help meeting facilitators better express their ideas by interacting with graphs and other graphics during presentations.
Presentation boards are wall-mounted cabinets with doors that swing open to reveal a whiteboard and/or corkboard that can be used during meetings but neatly tucked away for a clean look when not in use. Presentation boards are commonly used in private offices.
Bulletin boards are open or enclosed boards with a fabric, vinyl, or cork surface used for pinning up paper and other lightweight items with thumbtacks. Bulletin boards are used in many areas of the office but are especially useful in common areas for announcements.
Announcement boards are enclosed bulletin boards. They typically have a glass door that keeps posted announcements visible while protecting them from theft or damage from the elements in an outdoor setting. The door or doors may be lockable.
Message centers are freestanding multi-bulletin board units that display information on all sides. These are typically seen in common areas, including outdoor spaces where people are expected to approach from all angles.
Map rails are thin strips of cork or fabric material made to run along a wall. These are commonly used in classrooms and hallways for displaying student artwork, learning materials, and, of course, maps.
Directory boards, also called letter boards, are fabric boards with grooves that hold specially made letters. These boards generally help visitors in a lobby find a specific office in a large building.
Melamine is a plastic material commonly used as a whiteboard surface. Melamine is budget-friendly and lightweight, but this type of surface is more susceptible to staining, ghosting, and denting, so you may need a replacement every few years, depending on how frequently it’s used. Melamine boards often feature a steel backing that makes them magnetic.
Porcelain (or ceramic) is another common whiteboard surface. Although more expensive than melamine, it offers greater durability and resistance to scratches and stains. Like melamine, porcelain boards are easy to write on and often magnetic, but because porcelain is less porous, the surface is less likely to succumb to ghosting.
Glass is not porous at all, which makes it the most durable and most expensive option. Markers erase easily without smudging or ghosting, so these boards should last for many years. Glass markerboards are usually frameless and available in many colors, which gives them a modern appearance most offices desire.
Cork is a lightweight substance obtained from the outer layer of a cork oak tree. This material is often used as the surface on bulletin boards since it easily holds thumbtacks. Plus, cork grows back very quickly, making it a sustainable material.
Rubber behaves similarly to cork but is often preferred due to its eco-friendly design. Rubber is also better at withstanding the outdoor elements and does not support the growth of mold, mildew, and bacteria in damp areas.
Fabric is another common bulletin board material. It’s often preferred due to the variety of colors and patterns available. Fabric is often preferred over cork because it better hides pinholes caused by thumbtacks.
Vinyl bulletin boards are weatherproof and easy to clean, making them ideal for outdoor use.
Eco-friendly boards are manufactured using recycled materials such as milk jugs and water bottles. It’s common to find eco-friendly outdoor boards since recycled materials are usually weather-resistant.
Enclosed boards have a door, which is usually made of glass and may be lockable. These are ideal for use outdoors where weather resistance is needed and in areas where announcements need to be protected from potential theft.
Mobile boards roll on casters, which are often lockable to keep the board in place while in use. Mobile boards are often used in conference and training rooms with ever-changing layouts and as partitions between workstations.
Reversible boards have a whiteboard surface on both sides or a whiteboard surface on one side and a bulletin board surface on the reverse side.
boards are specially made for use outside and constructed using weatherproof materials to withstand even the harshest elements.