More people than ever before are working from home these days. With technology the way it is, evolving and improving our connectivity, it seems this trend isn’t about to reverse any time soon.
Perhaps you are thinking about working from home? There are many benefits to consider – you can go at your own pace, there’s no commute, you have flexibility, see more of your family, even go to work in your pajamas if you like! Those on the cusp of an exciting new work-at-home adventure should check out these guidelines for putting together an efficient and ergonomic office space.
For maximum productivity you need to be comfortable. This means positioning your desk, chair and computer at the correct heights for optimal ergonomic efficiency. Neck, back, wrist and eyestrain are common ailments suffered by poorly seated workers. Invest in adjustable office furniture that can be tweaked and re-positioned until it’s perfectly comfortable. The space beneath the desk must be uncluttered so feet can rest flat on the floor. Choose ergonomic seating that gives lumbar support, can flex, is height adjustable and has arm rests at keyboard height. Alternative seating options that help promote good posture include fitness balls and kneeling chairs.
Increasingly, desk-jockeys are turning to alternative set ups such as standing desks that are higher and dispense with the need to sit when working. Others swear by treadmill-desks for maximum productivity and concentration. Whatever arrangement you choose, remember it’s always healthy practice to get up and move around regularly, perhaps perform some stretches or take a walk around the back yard for a few minutes to give your body and mind a break.
Natural light in the office is almost like having an extra staff member because it really increases productivity. The energizing boost from the sun’s rays elevates mood, helps us focus and raises effectiveness. If you have windows in your office, take down drapes or heavy furnishings that block light and let the sun flow in. Of course you need to control screen glare from the sun and there will be times during the day when too much light isn’t helpful. By installing sleek, internal window shutters you can carefully control the amount of sunlight into the room. On cold, dark wintry days you can lift mood with a blast of solar-positive energy, and on sweltering sunny days you can simply block it out and keep cool – perfect.
Distractions slow down productivity, so work hard to remove them from the office. Is it noisy for you working from home? Make it easier to focus by wearing noise canceling headphones. Organize your computer workstation so that things likely to steal away your attention – mobile phones, games or tasty treats, are just out of reach. Ensure you are not distracted by the temperature – too hot or too cold will slow you down. Invest in storage that limits clutter and optimizes organization. This has the dual benefit of creating a serene environment that promotes concentration, whilst also being super-easy to locate any documents quickly.
Working at home can be liberating and life-changing. Optimize your chance of work success on the home-front by pushing the efficiency and ergonomics hard – when you get these elements right, it’s really hard to get the rest wrong.