Working from home, whether full-time or part-time, is becoming more and more popular as companies move toward remote offices and hire more contracted employees. While this is a great perk for employees and employers alike, working from home does prove to have its share of challenges, such as reduced focus and communication issues. But with the right home office setup, you can make the most of your work from home days and even boost your productivity levels beyond in-office hours.
Follow these 6 tips to help you coordinate the ideal stay at home work environment right from the comfort of your PJs.
1) Get good internet…really good internet
The first step to working efficiently out of the office is ensuring you have the right tools to keep your productivity goals on track. There’s nothing more frustrating than spotty internet getting in the way of your to-do list. Whether you’re using the internet to teach your kids or working from home, you’ll want to invest in a good internet plan. Talk to your company to see if they’re willing to subsidize any part of your internet bill to help lessen the cost burden of a high-quality plan.
2) Invest in reliable technology
The beauty of working remotely is being able to work wherever you want—whether that’s in a shared office space, your living room, or a local coffee shop. But if you want to be able to move around at your leisure without sacrificing your productivity, you’ll have to invest in the right tech stack to help you meet your goals. A laptop is a must-have definitely, but you’ll want to have the best lightweight laptop you can buy in order to stay connected and productive wherever you go.
In addition to picking the right computer to get the job done, you should also consider getting these items to create the ideal work environment wherever you go.
- Mobile hotspot
- Noise-canceling headphones
- Portable power bank
3) Organize your space
When you first start working from home you might find that it’s super challenging to stay focused on your work, and resist the urge to do your laundry, clean your kitchen, or prep for dinner during work hours.
The solution? Make sure your desk area is well-organized and clear from any major distractions that might get in the way of your work. Keep the surface of your desk clear and always clean to boost your focus and minimize the need to continuously break away from your work to tidy up. Use desk organizers and shelving to help you keep the clutter out of sight, out of mind.
4) Make it your own
Even if your home office has a more minimalist feel, you should still make it your own. Add some personality with a printed photo or two, a good luck charm, or some household plants to lift your mood during long hours.
5) Refine and define communication strategy
Maintaining seamless communication is one of the biggest drawbacks employers focus on when implementing work from home initiatives. But with the right strategy in place, and the tools to help keep your process organized, you shouldn’t even notice a difference between your in-office hours and days you’re working remotely. Use these tips to help you keep communication strong throughout the company—no matter how many miles separate you and your team.
- Schedule calls and in-person meetings when appropriate
- Invest in an internal messaging platform to foster daily communication
- Use a video messaging tool like Skype or Facetime to connect remote team members
- Manage projects with the help of a productivity tool such as Asana or Monday to track progress
6) Switch up the scenery
Even if you’ve got the perfect office setup at home, you still need to change up the scenery every so often. In a 2014 Stanford study, researchers found that a person’s creative output increases by an average of 60% when walking. Whether you go for frequent walks, work at a coffee shop, or simply work from a different room in the house, it’s important to your mood, productivity, and health to be as active as possible at work!
Working from home can be a cost-effective strategy for businesses and an even more productive work environment for employees, if done right. Use these 6 tips to help you establish a home office environment that promotes your best work!