How to Create The Perfect Home Office Setup – Maclocks
Whether you always dreamed of working from home, or shudder at the thought – post-pandemic, we’ve now all had a taste of the working from home lifestyle.
Whether that was from personal choice, new employer guidelines or to help you with your child-rearing schedule, it almost goes without saying that the most essential thing you need when working from home is a suitable work environment.
Get this one wrong, and you’re doomed to continual distractions. That massive pile of messy papers? You’ll need to tidy it up before you start any work (but never actually do). That box of your kids’ games? That’s an invitation for them to wander in and out of your workspace, probably when you’re on an important call. The list goes on and on.
But there are loads of easy techniques, programs and even technological upgrades you can implement to make your working from home experience a cakewalk (and not the literal walk to get some cake from the fridge).
The Main Working from Home Challenges You’ll Face
Maybe you’ve just transitioned to working from home, or are doing so for just a short amount of time (employer restructuring, pandemic or moving office,or otherwise).
Either way, there are certain unique challenges that come with working from your home. These include –
- Lack of structure. In what might come as a surprise (because after all, the day is still the same amount of time), just removing your coworkers and a structured office environment can really play havoc with your working at home day’s structure. Without all of those face to face meetings and other people to keep you in check, you could find yourself going to the fridge a few times a day…and without a manager peering over your shoulder, the lures of social media/online shopping/news and more seem to be vying for your attention.
- Childcare. This is a huge one for parents working from home – just because you’re at home, it doesn’t mean you’re available, whether your kids are on lockdown with you, your partner is at work or the kids are at school suddenly being ‘at home’ is synonymous with ‘being available’ – and suddenly you’re the parent primarily responsible for all things child-related.
- Distractions. When you get distracted or off-task from the office, there’s always someone there to remind you to get back to it – be it a manager, a deadline or needing to leave by a certain time. But, when you work from home, those temptations seem more…tempting, while those checks and balances seem far more distant (even if you do get a hundred phone calls and email reminders!).
- Loneliness. Without your office mates or a quick coffee break, things can get a little lonely. It’s not that you don’t love your family…it’s just that work is where you go to escape from them (for a few hours) and be yourself. When you’re working from home, it’s much more difficult to maintain that separation, because there isn’t one.
- Aches and pains. Your home office/desk/tiny bit of space where you place your laptop isn’t proposed built for work -it’s built for family time and relaxation (hopefully). Suddenly, you might find your working from home time is rife with aches and pains – from your back, suffering from slouching and craning, to your arms, which aren’t used to working at this angle.
Although it might not seem it at first glance, there are ways to make sure the above issues don’t have to distract or annoy you. All it takes is a few, choice organizational techniques!
Home Office Organization – Ideas and Tips
From the physical to the mental, there are so many quick and easy ways to improve your home organization to maximize your efficiency when working from home.
Home Office Layout
To put it mildly, you need an effective office layout if you hope to work from home effectively!
That means –
- Having a space, free of clutter, large enough to accommodate your laptop, and any accessories, such as mouse and keyboard
- Having a comfortable chair (with enough back and arm support, and that’s comfortable to sit on for long periods of time), or even room for a standing desk
- Enough electricity ports for your devices, as well as internet connection
- Temperature control, or windows (whichever you’re more comfortable with)
- Natural sunlight
The way your home workspace is set out is very individual, but these are the minimum requirements you need for solid focus.
Home Office Storage
Whether you’re doubling up the space as your workstation/another room or use, having the right office storage is one of the most important aspects of working from home. After all, a messy workstation can lead to distraction, frustration and things slipping through the net (a few too many times!).
Even having enough electrical outputs and charging stations for all your devices can make all the difference between a good and productive workday, and…not. Something like a 10 port USB docking station is an ideal space, time and effort-saver! This product can charge 10 USB mobile phones or tablets at the same time. The charging dock station detects the device and self-adjusts to a right current level.
Making sure you have everything in its right place will keep you focused, productive and – yes – happy!
Home Office Security
Whether you work for yourself or for an employer, keeping your devices safe and protected (from your kids, from burglars, from hackers) is of the utmost importance.
‘Secure’ can mean a variety of things and a variety of solutions. For example, securing your device to a location is important if there’s a lot of footfall (and especially tiny footfall) around your workstation: for Mac Mini users, the Mac Mini Security Mount is the quickest, easiest and most effective way to avoid random (and expensive) accidents.
If you’re not an Apple user, you can get all the same security benefits for any device you choose, thanks to this Universal Tablet Lock Adhesive Security Plate – you won’t even need to alter the device to apply it and can do so in under a minute…which is great, because that’s a minute you could be used to work with.
If you’re looking to secure devices to a certain location, to prevent them from being removed (which is always a good idea, when there are children and pets around!), the Universal Security Keyed Cable Lock, and the Coiled Cable Lock version, are both affordable, easy solutions to keep everything in its planned-for place. If you’re worried that certain tiny fingers or furry paws might find or swallow the key, the Combination Laptop Lock doesn’t even need keys to operate – just memorize a number, and don’t tell anyone to keep your device safe and staying put. Keep everything safe, secured, and impossible to remove or knock over with the Security Keyed Coiled Cable Lock.
Small Home Office Ideas
As with most home offices, space is always an issue. Coupled with all of the other work from home issues – organization, distraction and more – it seems that, if your spacing situation isn’t properly managed, the other issues are sure to follow.
But, there are some really solid (and space-saving!) hacks you can use to get the best out of whatever space you have, however limited!
- Use an ergonomic adjustable workstation. Not only will this keep the blood pumping to your legs but a standing desk, like the Sit-Stand Adjustable Workstation will eliminate all of those new aches and pains you’re just touching. In fact, sitting for long periods of time can be found to be extremely harmful, and was found to be the cause for several health-related issues.
- Free up dead space used by your monitor. See all that space your monitor is taking up? Not only is it probably causing you to crane your neck, it’s also not effective. Freeing up the space below it with something like the Reach Articulating Monitor Arm Mount, or the Articulating Single Joint Monitor Arm Mount would seriously clear up your workspace, giving you more room for even a second monitor (because we can all dream).
- Use stacked shelves. Shelving is by far the best-kept secret of people who work from home as standard. Be flexible, and see how many uses you can have for one shelf set – it can hold all of your files, stationery, cups and even those naughty snacks you plan on rewarding yourself with later.
Working From Home Can be As Productive as Office Work
People often wonder why they’re not as productive when working from home as they are in the office, but this is a really unfair comparison to make: both in terms of mindset, spacing and organization, working from home is always going to provide a challenge.
Luckily, there are some really effective, quick and easy solutions to every single working from home discomfort – check out the range of products linked above, and organize, clear, and hack your home office space for the most productive working from experience – ever!