If you’re in a personal assistant job, you may have considered moving into a more flexible role. Flexible working has been increasing in popularity for a number of years, even…
Working from home or your favourite café was until recently considered the preserve of freelancers and creatives, but we all know that’s no longer the case. As flexible working and the use of home as an office is taken up by employees in more sectors, many of us are thinking it’s time to set up a work-at-home office. There are plenty of benefits and challenges to home working, so to help you tackle them, here are some home office essentials to consider when creating an environment where you can work effectively!
Start with your workspace
Many of us discovered during the pandemic that home working isn’t quite as comfortable as you’d think. Working from the kitchen table, couch, or even bed for hours at a time can leave you stiff and aching all over. So, appropriate and functional seating at a proper desk should be your top priority, as it will allow you to look after your body and aid in your ability to be productive. We also recommend working in a space with natural light, maintaining a healthy posture and adjusting the height of your screen to be at eye level. There are plenty of options for hardware designed to improve your experience while working on a laptop or computer. We recommend investing in:
- Adjustable computer chair
- Laptop stand
- Mobile phone stand
- Wireless keyboard
- Wireless mouse (ideally vertical)
- Ergonomic mouse pad
Prepare your computer and tech tools
It’s incredibly important to make sure your technology is as good as possible while at home, that your internet connection is fast and the computer you’re using is up to date. It may also be worth researching apps you can use to help you complete your daily tasks, such as Scannable for PDF scanning, Zoom for group video calling and Slack for instant messaging between your team. There are a multitude of apps for remote team working out there which may make everyday processes far more efficient. Even though we’re physically isolated, technologies like these allow us to work collaboratively like never before.
Distractions are inevitable in any workplace, but they can be a little harder to ignore at home, where it’s friends, family or pets vying for your attention. It’s therefore advisable to establish boundaries. This could be anything from working in different parts of the house, to setting periods without talking. If anyone has to take calls, it might be a good idea to designate a separate room for this so the rest of the house doesn’t become distracted. This way, you can transform a space normally designated for eating or socialising into your productive work haven!
Set your working hours and stick to them!
It’s easy to lose track of your usual nine-to-five without the obvious signs you’d receive in the office – colleagues leaving for home, cleaners arriving or your scheduled train. Studies have shown that people find it harder to switch off when working from home, so we strongly advise you to set out a timetable that you can stick to. Routines like taking a coffee or lunch break in another room, or clearing away your workspace at the end of the day act as clear signals to your brain for when to work and when to relax.
The mainstream adoption of flexible-working contracts for a large swathe of employees is doing great things for work/life balance. However, to ensure that it’s sustainable, it’s important to create an environment at home where you can find focus, and also keep the personal and professional separate.
Whether you’re looking for a flexible, remote, or office-based role, register with us today to start your search for the perfect job!