How is it hunkering down at home? Whether you’re a veteran remote worker or new to the home office, it’s not uncommon to be facing challenges associated with working from home. While we’re sure you’re being inundated by home office ideas, we’ve got three home office imperatives to cut through the clutter and ensure that your new workspace works as hard as you do.
Remember Ergonomics Correlate with Emotional Health
Ergonomics is the study of people’s efficiency in their working environment. Correct, consistent ergonomic positioning has been shown not only to prevent harm, but to increase positive mental health outcomes for desk-bound employees. So, here are a few quick tips to keep you from feeling fatigued, sore and generally unproductive in your home office. You can find a more comprehensive overview in our guide to workspace ergonomics.
Use a monitor arm to keep your desk top clear and to keep the top edge of your computer screen at eye level or a little below. As you scan down the screen, your eye lids will naturally close a bit and moisten, which reduces eye fatigue.
Make sure your wrists are in a neutral position or tilted down to avoid getting carpal tunnel.
In our opinion, high-quality ergonomic chairs are the most important investment in any workspace. supports your body and reduces your fatigue from setting. If it isn’t comfortable, you’re not going to want to sit in it.
Consider a sit to stand desk that allows you to sit to work and then raise the desk with a touch of a button to standing height. Workspace variety is one of the primary factors in promoting movement, so the ability to stand. However – those who’ve worked retail understand – consider a floor cushion while working in a standing position and keep your intervals healthy. Whether you’re sitting or standing, 8 hours a day in any position is too much.
Move your home office desk close to the windows for maximum natural lighting, but keep it parallel. This set-up is less likely to cause glare on your screen, and gives you a good reason to turn away from your computer every few minutes to take in the scene.
Remember to Create Visual Clarity, Not Chaos
Every second, you perceive thousands of visual cues from your environment that affect your awareness and, consequently, your productivity. More than keeping your home office clean, it’s important to streamline systems of organization such that clutter doesn’t accumulate in the first place.
Typical offices have lots of cords. Streamline your power access with a clamp on desk top power module with power and USB ports so you’re not on your knees crawling around the floor every time you need to plug in or unplug.
Get a small storage cabinet or 2-drawer file that can serve as a printer stand, filing center or supply station.
Find a large bookcase that you don’t need to overstuff. Stage it with some awards and memorabilia to showcase your accomplishments and it will look great as the backdrop in your video conferences. And don’t let it get stale! Rotate the photos, and include mementos of success, cartoons that make you laugh, inspire you and maybe even a scent that makes you happy–something you definitely can’t get away with in a cube.
A mobile filing pedestal allows you to position it where you need it and one with a cushion on top doubles as a guest chair so your kids or spouse can come perch to visit the home office. Or, just lean back in your chair and use your ped as an ottoman to take a break and enjoy that cup of coffee.
Remember You Don’t Have A Supply Room
Research shows that interruptions typically take 29 minutes to bounce back from in terms of productivity. Compound that by the time it takes to run to the store and back? You’ve lost a good chunk of your day simply to get staples.
Especially if other people are home during working hours, you don’t want to be darting out of the office every few minutes when you need things. Keep all your office supplies–pens, scissors, stapler, stamps–handy. Consider a small fridge or coffee maker if you like to enjoy a few beverages during the day. But don’t keep your lunch in the office fridge. You do need breaks, after all, and even if you’ve got an awesome home office, you don’t need to spend your life in there.
Thanks for Reading!
We hope your transition to remote work feels as good as not having to go to the office. Our mission is to make your workspace work as hard as you do – wherever that may be. Need some home office help? Our workspace consultants are working remotely to help you respond to change and relocation.