Throughout 2020, more people have worked from home than ever before. In response to the threat COVID-19 has posed to public safety, workplaces have temporarily closed, and businesses have been forced to radically modify their operations. As a result, millions of people have been kept out of business premises and embraced working from home.
Although lockdown is showing signs of coming to an end, that doesn’t mean things will go back to normal. In terms of working environments, there are a significant number of challenges to overcome before businesses can welcome back their staff as they did before. Due to this, many people are expecting to be working home for the foreseeable future.
Although the internet makes it easy for people to login to databases, collaborate with colleagues and complete work from any location, you’ll need to stay motived if you want to maintain your productivity while you’re working remotely.
Fortunately, a dedicated home office will give you the environment you need to maximise your results while you’re working from home. For inspiration, take a look at these top tips and begin creating your perfect home office now:
Identify Your Workspace
If you’re lucky enough to have a spare room, you may want to dedicate it to work and set up a fully equipped home office. With the ability to shut the door and block out excess sound, this is often the best setup for people who work from home and share their residence with family, friends or flatmates.
Alternatively, if you’re building a career by working remotely, you may want to invest in a garden studio or outdoor office. This additional space and the ability to separate your work life from your home life can make working and living in the same property far more enjoyable.
If you don’t have the space or resources to facilitate either of these options, there’s no need to worry. Whether you’re working from a breakfast bar in your kitchen, your dining room table or even from the couch, you can still create a stimulating work environment.
Get the Lighting Right
Most people use a computer, laptop or tablet when they’re working, particularly when they’re working remotely. In fact, a significant number of people spend upwards of eight hours a day looking at a screen. Understandably, you might end the day with eye strain and a headache if you’ve spent a lot of time using tech devices for work.
By modifying your lighting, however, you can limit the strain on your eyes and even improve your accuracy and attention to detail. You won’t need to sit in the dark to get your work done but you will want to retain the ability to blot out excess light. With motorised blackout blinds, for example, you can prevent an unnecessary glare being emitted by your screen and adjust the settings in seconds.
As the position of the sun changes throughout the day, you can simply adjust your motorised blinds with a remote control, app or even a voice command. This gives you complete control over your environment and allows you to create the perfect workspace in your home.
Overstock Your Supplies
If you’re transitioning from working in a dedicated business environment to working at home, you’re probably used to having access to all the resources you might need. At home, however, supplies will only be there if you’ve arranged for them to be.
It’s easy to underestimate the volume of supplies you’ll get through or the range of resources you’ll need, so think about your workday carefully when planning what to buy. As well as paper, ink and pens, you might need sector-specific specialist equipment or materials that relate to your specific job role.
Remember – you should be able to claim the cost of supplies from your employer, so discuss this with them before you start kitting out your home office. If you’re self-employed, discuss any purchases with your accountant to determine whether they can be classed as an allowable expense in relation to you tax liability.
Become a Successful Remote Worker
Although many people are eager to work from home on a full-time, long-term basis, your employer will only allow you to do so if you continue to provide value to the business. Many people find they actually work harder when they’re operating remotely, so don’t expect to decrease your workload or cut your hours. With a well-equipped home office, however, you can maximise your productivity, increase your efficiency and remain a valuable member of your team while working remotely.