At the moment, millions of employees across the world are working from home. While working at home was becoming increasingly commonplace before the Covid-19 pandemic, there has been a vast increase in the number of homeworkers in recent months.
Working From Home Made Easy
As we adapt to a ‘new normal,’ one of the most important considerations for those based at home is creating a suitable workspace. If you’re now based at home, here are some tips to take on board.
Set aside a quiet spot
If you’re used to traveling to an office, and you’re now working at home, it’s essential to find a quiet spot to create a base. While the idea of sitting on the sofa with your laptop balanced on your knee may sound appealing, the novelty will soon wear off. Many of us are still working through hectic schedules and our workload hasn’t changed dramatically, so it’s vital to be able to focus and avoid distractions. If you don’t have a home office, try and be creative with the space you do have available. You could use a guest room, an attic or basement, a garage or even a corner of the living room to create a temporary study. Ideally, you should be able to close the door or pull a curtain or screen across to block out noise and prevent children and pets from wandering in while you’re taking a call or presenting to colleagues.
Investing in Technology
Technology plays a crucial role in enabling us to work from home. In addition to a computer and a phone, it’s wise to think about what else you will need to cross off daily work tasks, keep in touch with colleagues and clients and make the working day more productive and enjoyable. Your employer may have provided you with gadgets, such as a tablet, to stay in touch while working remotely, but you might want to invest in other equipment or gizmos. Many of us enjoy listening to music while we work, for example. If this is the case, you may be thinking about buying some new speakers. If you’re pushed for space, or you like to listen to music while you work, cook, relax or hang out with friends or family, take a look at reviews of portable speakers like the Anker Soundcore 2. You can connect your speakers with your phone, your laptop or a tablet and change playlists based on your mood and your plans.
Comfort is Key
We’ve all seen pictures online of people working at kitchen tables or trying to send emails and make calls from the sofa. Lots of employees have been forced into home working with very little notice, and this can make it difficult to create a practical workspace. Many of us don’t have office chairs and desks hanging around. While dining room tables or armchairs might have seemed like a sensible alternative at the beginning of lockdown, it’s not plausible to work long hours over a prolonged period of time if you can’t sit up straight and you’re not comfortable. Posture is critical when spending long spells at a desk. When you’re working, your spine should be straight and your shoulders relaxed. If you are slumped over your computer, or you’re stretching to reach the keyboard, you may find that you start to suffer from back pain and discomfort in your neck and shoulders. Ask your boss about providing furniture if you don’t already have access to an adjustable desk and chair. Take regular breaks throughout the day and add extra support at the base of your back if you’re prone to lower back pain. You could use a cushion or a pillow, for example.
Exposure to natural light is proven to boost productivity, and it can also enhance wellbeing. When you’re setting up your workspace, try and position your desk near a door or window and open curtains wide. If you’re working in a small, dark room, it’s a good idea to angle your seat towards the light, to stick to light colors and tones for the walls and to hang a mirror on the wall to bounce light around.