Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Number of cubicles in the United States ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   5 Comments )
Subject: Number of cubicles in the United States
Category: Business and Money > Small Businesses
Asked by: billnkar-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 18 May 2004 22:46 PDT
Expires: 17 Jun 2004 22:46 PDT
Question ID: 348618
I am producing a product that is made for use in a cubicle. In an
effort to estimate sales, I would like to know how many cubicles there
are in the United States. Please include a measure of uncertainty (ie,
+/- 10%)

Request for Question Clarification by ragingacademic-ga on 19 May 2004 08:52 PDT
billnkar - I can provide you with annual sales, but could not locate a
# for total number of cubicles in the US.  We could estimate a total
based on the sales number and a 20 year replacement estimate.

Will that suffice?


Request for Question Clarification by ragingacademic-ga on 19 May 2004 08:55 PDT
billnkar - the numbers I have to work with are as follows - annual
office systems (cubicles) sales and average cost of an office system. 
From this we can estimate # of units sold annually.

Subject: Re: Number of cubicles in the United States
Answered By: ragingacademic-ga on 19 May 2004 09:58 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
billnkar - great.  Picked up your reply in comments.  I think there is
actually a way for you to respond to a clarification so that it
appears in the part of the page immediately below the question - this
will also cause an alert to be generated and send to me via email...
(also a good way to get a hold of me if you ever want to post another
question to my attention)

So, to answer your question...

According to an article in Plastics News from September 17, 2001
(volume 13 issue 10) titled "Cubicle debacle: Office furniture sales
fall" -

Sales of office furniture systems totaled approximately $13.3 billion in 2000
2001 sales ended up at about $11.1 billion (impact of recession)
2002 sales were estimated to end flat at about $11.16 billion

Since 2003 did not bring about much growth either, let's assume 2003
office furniture sales of $11.2 billion

According to Crain's Detroit Business from June 1 1998 - "New Cubicle
Designs Curb 'Prairie-Dogging'" - cubicles, officially known as office
systems, make up approximately 35% of the U.S. office furniture

Applying this to the annual sales number from above - we can estimate
2003 cubicle sales at approximately $3.92 billion.

Cubicles range in price from $3000 to $7000 (Crain's Detroit Business,
June 1, 1998, "Cubicle now tailored to teams, technology"), with the
previous article reporting an average price paid of $5,800.  Given the
range and the fact that this data is about six years old, that seems
like a good # to work with.

So - With $3.92 billion in annual sales and $5,800 per unit - we have
675,860 units sold annually, which would place the total number of
units in service in the US at approximately 13,517,000 (based on a 20
year life estimate).

Using a lower estimate for cubicle cost - at $3000 - the number of
units sold annually would jump to 1,306,700 or almost double the
average estimate.

Please let me know if you are in need of additional clarification.

All of the articles were extracted from RDS.

billnkar-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $5.00
Thats what I was looking for, good assumptions and logical approach
for an estimate like this.  -billnkar

Subject: Re: Number of cubicles in the United States
From: clowndevilboy-ga on 19 May 2004 08:01 PDT may be of some use.  They have a downloadable .xls file
that contains state by state data on company size.  However their most
recent data is 2001.

-Good Luck

Subject: Re: Number of cubicles in the United States
From: billnkar-ga on 19 May 2004 09:20 PDT
raginacademic ... not sure this is the way to correspond with you, but
I'll try it.

As far as your approach, I think yearly sales of cubicles would work.
i would like to boil that down to an average number of cubicles sold
per year.
-Thanks, Bill
Subject: Re: Number of cubicles in the United States
From: apteryx-ga on 19 May 2004 23:37 PDT
Hmm.  Interesting.  I was expecting to see this question answered by a
process that produced an estimate of the number of rank-and-file
workers ("individual contributors," or ICs) in the US in occupations
that are typically encubicled.  Wouldn't the number of units sold drop
off when hiring drops off, as it has done in the past few years?  And
wouldn't the rate of replacement decrease when profits are off?  Yet
there are still umpty-zillion people (+/- 10%) in cubicles.

Subject: Re: Number of cubicles in the United States
From: ragingacademic-ga on 20 May 2004 08:59 PDT
billnkar, thanks so much for the excellent ranking and the extra tip!!

apteryx - good approach.  The problem, however, would be that many
occupations you may ASSUME require cubicles do not use them. One very
major example is the financial services industry, where open spaces
are favored.  Many news operations do not use cubicles either.  A
great deal of tasks completed under supervision are done in open

So, one would need to have a very good handle on specific use of
office systems occupation by occupation.  In any event, since the data
was available to take a more direct approach - that is what I did.

Thanks for your comments!
Subject: Re: Number of cubicles in the United States
From: wholesalecubicles-ga on 10 Mar 2005 09:36 PST
apteryx- Your approach is certainly something to be considered, mostly
because not all cubicle sales are new.

When cubicle sales are calculated, refurbished or used cubicles may
not be included in the count, even though they represent a substantial
industry.  The company I work for liquidates cubicles from large
offices, refurbishes them and resells them in smaller quantities to
dealers.  It would be wise to take a look at how many people purchase
used or refurbished cubicles if they could benefit from your product
as well.


Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy