Working from home is the latest phenomenon sweeping the workforce as companies constantly seek out new ways to improve flexibility and let people work in a way that fits in with their lifestyle and commitments.
With more businesses offering flexible working and an increased awareness of the importance of a strong work-life balance, having a home office is no longer the reserve of freelancers. Instead, employees who would traditionally have been office based now have a chance to shape their working week to suit their routine and spend some time away from the workplace.
However, before you seize the opportunity, its important to ensure you have the right mindset and setup at home. Find out more with our guide on how to start working from home, including our top tips on being productive and setting up your space in a way that positively impacts productivity.
Top tips for working from home
While you may envision a day spent curled up on the sofa with your laptop, occasionally replying to emails, working from home actually requires a great deal of concentration – after all, you still have a job to do. To ensure you get the most out of your time at home, you need to:
- Create an isolated space – Whether you have a dedicated room or a corner tucked away in the kitchen, create a clear separation between home life and work life to ensure you don’t get distracted by non-work tasks.
- Stick to your office hours – To help you get into the flow of working, try to stick to your usual routine, including your working hours. Working into the evening when you normally don’t can mean you’re more likely to lose motivation.
- Get dressed – The simplest way to get into the work mindset is to dress as if you are heading to the office, helping you get the right train of thought.
- Take regular breaks – One of the joys of working from home is you can set your own schedule. This means if you find your productivity faltering, you’re free to go for a walk or grab a coffee to replenish your energy levels.
- Avoid distractions – As tempting as it may be to have the TV on in the background, try to cut out anything that may take your attention away from work.
How to set up a home office
The biggest pitfall of working from home is not having a suitable work station. Setting up your laptop on the dining room table isn’t a good base for a productive day and can take away from your family’s personal space. Instead, try to find a secluded spot with all of the following:
- A spacious desk – Invest in a sturdy desk with plenty of room for your laptop and office stationery, ideally with storage compartments to keep your documents safe.
- A comfortable chair – Just like in the office, its important to have a supportive desk chair to avoid any aches and pains later on.
- Space to move around – While space at home may be limited, try to find a place where you have room to stand up and stretch when you need to.
- A personal touch – Motivate yourself for the day by adding some personal décor. This could be a family photo or an inspiring quote.
- Natural elements – Both natural light and plants can boost your mood, helping you to stay focused.
With these working from home ideas, you can stay productive all day and still feel all the benefits of flexible working. For more advice, explore our Knowledge Centre or to get started with your dream home office, browse the wide range of office supplies and furniture available at Staples.