If your space is limited, you may need to get creative when creating your home office. By removing the clothes pole and installing electrical connections, you can easily convert a closet of any size into a workspace. You could even install a working desk at the top of some stairs.
If you are spending a lot of time in your home office, you might prefer a better view and more room. Identify space that is infrequently used, such as a guest room or dining area. Using a sideboard or cupboard for papers, a computer, and printer allows the entire workspace to be behind closed doors, for instance. Your working space will be able to extend into a larger area.
Follow Ergonomic Rules
Minimize the damage sitting for long hours causes to your body by following ergonomic rules. Set up your home workspace in such a way that your back and neck are straight and your arms are parallel to the floor. Avoid slouching or keeping your arms at odd angles.
Use the ergotron workspace planner to help you set up your workspace. This tool will tell you exactly where to keep your monitor, keyboard, chair and desk based on your height.
For example, this is the recommended layout for a 6’0” person.
Plan What You Need
Plan ahead for all the things that you’ll need to work comfortably and efficiently in your home office and keep your project within budget. Start with proper temperature control and lighting. Your desk chair will be moving around in the space, so flooring should be a hard surface, at least near the desk. If you’re fortunate to have a window nearby, select window coverings that will allow you to control the light in your area. If you don’t have windows then you will need to come up with good lighting sources for your area.
Probably the most important piece of furniture you’ll have will be your desk or work surface. Whether you select a custom-designed desk or use two file cabinets with a door stretched across them, it should be large enough and the right height to comfortably do your work. If your space is limited, draw out a floor plan on graph paper and move the shapes around until you find a workable space. To make the most of the limited space, have shelving installed behind your desk so books and supplies will be easy to reach.
What Chair to Sit On
A comfortable chair is the heart of a productive home office.
Investing in a good one will make a notable difference to your work life. Selecting a chair that is comfortable, the right height, and provides proper back and arm support for the type of work you will be doing. If you like to put your feet up, have a small footstool under your desk. Install a slide-out keyboard holder so that your computer keyboard is the right height for easy and comfortable use. Place your computer mouse in a place that is accessible and provide cushioning for your wrists.
Natural Lighting or a Desk Lamp
It’s extremely important to have proper lighting in a home office. To reduce eye strain, have lighting installed over your reading area, on the computer, and behind you so that there’s no reflection off the computer monitor. Place the computer monitor a comfortable distance from your chair so that you don’t need to squint or use reading glasses to read the screen. By reducing eye strain, you’ll be able to work longer and more safely.
Do Not Clutter the Space
Of course, you want everything you’ll need at hand, but you’d be surprised what you can live without. Clutter is very distracting and reduces efficiency, so sort through your supplies and get rid of anything extra. Get your schedule, your routine, and your workspace organised, and you’ll work better.
If your storage space is limited in your designated home office, find a place in another area of your home for items and supplies that you use less frequently.
A few green plants will not only add a dash of colour to your office space but also increase happiness and reduce stress. In fact, even a few plants can increase productivity.
Instead of choosing just any green plants, pick something that is easy to maintain and helps improve air quality.
Pick an energy inducing colour, such as shades of yellow, orange and red. Avoid dark, dull colours — they can make you feel less energetic. Store office supplies in style by using decorative baskets or cover boxes with interesting fabrics. If you have any wall space at all, be sure to include either artwork or photos that you love.
By planning your home office space, getting it organised, and decorating it to express who you are, you’ll enjoy it more. Your work will be better, you’ll appreciate being at home, and you’ll have the perfect place to work: your home.
Add Your Own Personal Items
One of the best parts about a home office is that you can totally dictate its decor per your tastes. Add artwork, books and family photos. Good decor won’t just make your office space feel more inviting, it’ll also improve productivity.
Make Use of Vertical Space
If you find your office is too cluttered with items, consider using floating shelves. You can store items that don’t weigh much such as a small printer or office supplies on a shelf. Shelves can be a great option to holding plants, photos and books.
Clean Your Space Regularly
When you create a home office, you have to keep lots of things in mind: equipment, office hours, tasks and calls, balancing your work and family time. It’s easy to forget about cleaning, especially when you’re used to traditional office space being cleaned for you.
Schedule some time for tidying up and regularly clean your office equipment and the room itself. Don’t forget to clean all surfaces and use special solutions like wipes, sprays, and sanitisers.