Working From Home
Working from home has become more and more popular over the past several years. With advancements in technology for personal use such as remote access, video calling, and cloud data storage, many computer-based professionals are capable of doing the same jobs at home as they would in a corporate office. Moreover, home workers have the solid advantages of avoiding long commutes, dodging office dynamics, and making as many trips to the refrigerator as they desire – in their pajamas.
Despite the comfortable benefits of working from home, it is still very important to have parameters in place to ensure that what needs to get done gets done. For a basic starting point to set up a productive environment at home, take into account these five must-have elements of a work-from-home workspace.
Must-Have #1: Using a Schedule While Working From Home
Even if you have more time during the day to complete your work, many working from home professionals, especially newbies to the working style, may find it difficult to self-manage when the once visible parameters of office life have been lifted. In order to avoid this common rut, you need to make a structured work schedule for yourself and abide by it. The bonus of working from home is that you can tailor your schedule to whatever suits your working style and alter it whenever you need to.
Must-Have #2: Have an Exclusive Workspace When Working From Home
Having a designated work area is just as important as maintaining a schedule. When you use a go-to workspace in your house, such as a home office or simply a sectioned off area of your living room, you do yourself a favor by separating work-related things from things not related to work inside your home. This way, you avoid unproductive multitasking and prevent outside distractions from bleeding into your work zone.[wpob id=”2″]
Must-Have #3: Use a Timer When Working From Home
The Pomodoro technique has become popular for a reason. While 25-minute intervals of super concentration (separated by five-minute breaks) may not be everyone’s magic ratio, scheduling regular breaks in your workday has been shown to maximize productivity and promote mental and physical well-being. Avoid burning yourself out at the desk and use a timer to remind you when it’s time to stretch and take a breather.
Must-Have #4: Easy Connection With Your Team When Working From Home
Although you’re physically located in your home, or a place of your choice, you’re most likely part of a larger network of people that works together in the big picture. So of course, you’ll need to stay in touch and generally remain available for contact during the workday. With that in mind, make sure you are an active part of your team’s online networks and communities, and make sure that you can easily access your team’s primary communication channel at all times. If your team communicates via Skype, for example, have it visible on your desktop and install the app on your phone. That way, you can have access to whatever is going on in your company’s network from wherever you are during your workday.
Must-Have #5: Maintain an Organized Space When Working From Home
Tying in with the necessity of having a purposeful workspace, keeping that workspace organized will contribute to your productivity dramatically. You should never have to spend more time searching for what you need through piles of clutter than accomplishing the real work that needs to be done during the day. Perhaps you need to invest in quality organizational products such as shelving, filing cabinets, or even something as simple as multitabbed binders – whatever you need to keep necessities organized and easy to access. In the long run, investing in organizational supplies can save you countless hours – and money.