So many of us are now working from home with the worldwide pandemic and organisations being forced to be more flexible in their work patterns. Whilst some of us may already have suitable home offices or spaces in which to work other are having to adapt their current home layout. So whether you require an extra room in your house to dedicate to home working or you need to adapt existing space the follow tips will help you create the perfect work environment.
These ideas will help you turn a part of your home into a suitable space where you can switch off from home life and focus on work. Turn off all the distractions, get organised and get comfortable so that you can be at your most productive in you roll.
Table of Contents
Number One – Desk
Find the perfect desk. This is probably one of the most important factors when setting up the perfect workspace. Without a suitable desk everything falls into chaos. Think about the following factors.
- A suitable flat space to work on. Writing documents, using your laptop or desktop computer and somewhere to place your coffee/tea. Think about how much space you need for this to be efficient. Do you work primarily on your computer with no paper? Therefore only requiring a small work surface. Or do you need to sift through mountains of paperwork and need to spread yourself out a little?
- Suitable storage for stationery, paperwork and folders. Many desks will have built in storage and so will not. If you require additional storage then you can add a pedestal, filling cabinet or shelving to help out.
- Comfort is important. Ensure you have a desk that is ergonomically designed. If you work for long periods at a desk then it’s worth considering a desk that can be raised and lowered so that you can stand for certain periods of the day.
- Agile office furniture can be essential when you’re working with restricted space. Desks that can easily be moved or folded away will play an important part in your overall office design. Maybe you’re working in a shared space with your children’s play space or in a bedroom and the extra space makes all the different when you’re not working.
- If like me you’re a fan of design then a desk that looks great will be an important factor in the design of your office space. My two favourite decor styles are rustic industrial and mid century modern. You can see some of my favourite desks here.
Number Two – Chair
Finding the right chair for your office is important primarily for comfort, but also consider these factors.
- A dedicated office chair will have functions that allow you to adjust the chair to suit your seating style. Height, tilt, back support, sliding seat and posture adjustments can all help you feel comfortable in your seat.
- Design and style. If you’re not a fan of standard office chairs and want something to match your desk or room decor then you’ll need to look at a wider range of chairs.
- Standing and sitting. Many of us who need to work in front of a computer for long periods of time will need a chair that can be put aside whilst we stand for a while. Chairs that can fold or tuck away will be important here.
Number Three – Dedicated space
It’s all too easy to get distracted from our work when at home. Therefore having a dedicated work space will allow you to focus on your work. Having the right setup in an area within your home will make a big difference here. If possible have a single room in your house dedicated to work. Have you desk area setup with all your office equipment in one area is ideal. If however you can’t do this then section off an area in your house. You could get creative here and setup dividers with shelving units, curtains or simple screens.
Number Four – Clean and tidy
Having storage to organise your workspace can be vital so that you can be productive during the day. If you need extra storage, again think about how this is going to fit into your space. Don’t overcrowd your room and have a good clear out and declutter regularly to avoid be overwhelmed.
Also try and have a daily clean of your space. There are no dedicated cleaners here to do this for you so a daily 15min clean with help you focus on the work at hand.
Number Five – Decor & personality
Having a space that you can decorate and design in your own style will make you feel happier and more productive. You need to feel comfortable and content in your workspace. Do do this you may wish to decorate the space and put up some suitable art to reflect your personality.
Number Six – Air, ventilation and light
The perfect work environment will provide a good circulation of fresh air and access to plenty of daylight. Try and setup your workspace near a window or outside door. The daylight and fresh air will help you focus and will benefit your mental health.
Number Seven – Temperature control
Being able to control the temperature in your workspace will also be important. You want to be in an environment that sits at around 19-21 degrees. You won’t need to go and spend thousands on a HVAC system but being able to control the heating easily can make things better when trying to concentrate. We have Hive system installed that allow us to set the room temperature from our phones. This can be a low cost upgrade to your existing system.
Number Eight – Drinks and snacks
Having easy access to food and drink whilst working can help you focus on work. Maybe having a kettle and supplies near your desk will help. Even a small fridge in your workspace with a few cool drinks and snacks nearby will help you get distracted.
Number Nine – Different spaces
All of the above talks about setting up the perfect workspace. But I’d like to think outside the box a little here. Being in the same place all day, everyday can become a little draining on our souls. If we work at home alongside being at home with family, cooking and cleaning we can find ourselves becoming a prisoner in our own homes. It’s really good to think about alternative workspaces to help break up the pattern. We still have a dedicated workspace but here are a few ideas we use from time to time to break the chains.
- We have a membership at the local gym which have a cafe and quiet workspaces. This is great to get out of the house and work in an environment that has access to food, drink, toilets and exercise equipment when we need a break. In fact i’m writing this now at the gym!
- Garden. If you have a garden at home then make a dedicated space here where you can work when the weather allows. We built a veranda on the back of our house that provides suitable seating, power sockets and protection from the sun. It’s great area to sit and work on our laptops.
- Campervan. We purchased a campervan / day van a few years ago and have adapted it to allow us to work on the road. We installed a solar panel to power our laptops, have a portable toilet and the middle seats fold down into a suitable desk space.
- Try and have a couple of different spaces available to you at home. Whether it’s the sofa, a quiet corner or a breakfast bar can help you switch things up now and again. We like to move around a little when at home but we do spend the majority of our time in our office as this is where everything work related lives.
So there we have it. Setting up the perfect workspace is just about staying in one spot. Many of you will be able to work in different locations as long as you have a phone signal and plenty of data. We do still need a dedicated space at home and one that we can feel comfortable in and feel relaxed and can be productive. Hopefully, the ideas will inspire you all to create that perfect space and continue to be successful in your careers.
All the best, Ben