How to Create a Productive Home Office Design For Remote Working
Creating a productive home office is essential for anyone working from home. Due to recent events, remote working is more prevalent than ever. Many have had to make the difficult transition from in-person to online.
If this is the case, you may have been putting off creating a home office space while you wait to return to work. However, with all the benefits of keeping employers at home, you may not be returning to work as soon as you'd hoped. No need to fret, we cover everything you need for designing your ideal work from home situation.
Remote work isn't a new phenomenon. In fact, it's been popular since the creation of modern technology. Yet, we still neglect the home work space. Our environment plays a big role in productivity and efficiency. Therefore, the right design can be great for business. Most importantly, the right design sparks a new passion for old work.
Of course, everyone's living situation is different. You may be thinking in your 200-square foot studio apartment that you don't have the space for an office. Although you don't have the luxury of seclusion, there's still a way to fake it. Setting up room dividers is a great way to do this.
Tight spaces are all about compact, multi-use furniture and appliances that can easily be stored into hiding. When it comes to room dividers, opt for ones that fold down when not in use. For multi-use, your room divider can also double as storage by using cork board to hang important information or hooks to hang jackets and bags.
Although mixing other spaces isn't ideal, there may not be another option for you. You may need to double your dining table as a work desk. If so, remember to keep both activities separate from each other. When it's time to eat meals at your table, put the computer away.
Another great use of storage is floating shelves. If your desk isn't big enough to hold all your supplies, floating shelves can help store items for less clutter. Storing up is an effective way to get the most out of your space.
Small spaces don't have to be a detriment to your work from home situation. Overall, keep the space neat, decluttered and as secluded as possible. Keep other activities separate when tuned into work mode and know when it's time to turn off for the day.
Beginning with a blank space creates the fresh start that everyone needs when designing a new home office. Whatever your setup looks like now, it's time to reimagine it by clearing everything out and looking at the big picture.
First, think about how you'll be using your office. This looks different for everyone. Maybe you're a student participating in remote learning or an artist who needs a studio for creating. You might be someone who works closely with clients or runs an online store that produces and packages everything by hand.
Different work requires different layouts. The desk acts as a focal point in the office. Since this is where the majority of the work is being done, the placement of the desk will allow everything else to fall into place.
Placing the desk in the center of the room creates openness. If you're using a lot of electronics, you'll have to keep in mind where your outlets are placed. Extension cords, zip ties and cable raceways are some helpful tools.
For less cable hassle and more privacy, you may want to place the desk against a wall or in a corner. Add some variety by incorporating a second desk. A standing desk is an ergonomic option to get you out of your chair and on your feet.
Next, include some extra seating for guests, clients or colleagues who may pay a visit every once and a while. A couple of armchairs or comfortable couch can do the trick.
Now all the tools you need should be close by in some sort of organized fashion. Provide yourself with plenty of storage and add some personalized decor to keep a pleasant aura.
Ergonomics for a Productive Home Office
Ergonomics / noun
the study of people's efficiency in their working environment
Applying ergonomic design to work essentials such as computers, desks and chairs will aid in preventing fatigue, stress and injury over prolonged periods of time. When you think of productivity you think of ergonomics. The main idea behind implementing this practice into your design is to keep you comfortable and safe while you work.
The right chair should emphasize proper posture, keep knees at the same level of as the hips and feet flat on the floor. Pick a desk with a corresponding height to the chair, making sure there's enough room for the lower half of your body. Again, a standing a desk is a great option to get you out of your seat.
Finally, keep everything on the desk close by for easy reach. Elevate the monitor so it's directly in front of you. Keep the mouse and keyboard in front of the monitor on a flat surface. Wrists should stay straight and upper arms should stay close to the body.
The lighting in your space also plays into how your environment affects your mood. If you can, select a room with big windows that let in lots of natural light (a beautiful view is a bonus). Exposure to natural lighting not only has a lot of work benefits, but a lot of health benefits as well.
If you're working with limited natural light, add mirrors or metallic decor to help reflect whatever light is present. Colors can also lighten up your space. Choose reflective colors like white or pastels. If it fits your style, a light color scheme will boost the lighting and therefore, boost your mood.
No windows? There are other lighting options that can do the trick just as well.
- Cove lights: minimize visual disturbances of direct light, create the illusion of natural light
- Hidden lights: hides light fixtures an easier way by tucking them behind objects, creating the same illusion of natural light
- Warm lamps: having a source of lighting closer to your desk can be less harsh than overhead lighting