While the concept of working from home is still relatively new to many workplaces here in the Philippines, it has already become a business imperative in many parts of the world. In fact, a global study by AND CO and Remote Year titled Anywhere Workers from last year showed that 91% out of more than 3,000 respondents work remotely, with 55% working remotely 100% of the time.
This should no longer come as a surprise. New generation of workers are starting to realize the benefits of working from home which includes eliminating long hours of commuting and having a less stressful working environment.
Even so, working from home has its negative sides as well. With a more relaxed environment, employees might be tempted to turn on the television or be distracted by the loud gossip of neighbors. It is also possible for less organized employees to have a hard time shutting down from work by the end of the day. There is no need to worry though because such problems can be easily avoided with simply having a proper home office design.
Whether you have a separate home office or just a tiny space in a corner of your bedroom, it is important to avoid having a messy working environment. For a productive work from home, here are some helpful home office design ideas.
Find a good space
With remote working, you are free to work wherever your creativity is. You can work in the living room if it has the strongest Wi-Fi connection or in the dining room if it has the best lighting around your home. However, having no permanent space for remote working might be not really be convenient in the long term. Having to pack up and move places every day do not only take time off your working hours, but you are also subject to plenty of distractions, especially if you do not live alone.
A good space for a home office should be far from a high traffic road to avoid noise distractions from passing cars and people. However, if your work involves meeting clients at home, then it is best to situate your home office near the entrance, but it should be far enough from your personal living room space.
Having a door is also ideal for a home office design because it makes it easy to divide the work time and space from your personal time and space. It is also necessary to consider the room temperature when looking for a good home office space. It should not be too hot or too cold for you.
Lastly, you should also consider checking if your home office design allows a good amount of natural light to enter the room. A study done by researchers from Northwestern University in Chicago titled Impact of Workplace Daylight Exposure on Sleep, Physical Activity, and Quality of Life in 2013 revealed that office workers with plenty of daylight throughout the day sleep on average 46 minutes longer than their counterparts with no daylight or windows. Not only is natural light helpful in saving energy when you are working during the day, but it can also be beneficial to your health.
There are plenty of researches that suggest messy people are geniuses including the 2013 study done by the researchers of University of Minnesota published in Psychological Science. However, while messy desks can be beneficial to creativity, it is not that 100% beneficial. The study done by researchers of Princeton University Neuroscience Institute titled Interactions of Top-Down and Bottom-Up Mechanisms in Human Visual Cortex in 2011 shares the negative effect of clutter. In simple words, the study explains that the more objects your eyes see at the same time, the more restricted your ability to focus becomes.
You do not need an overly clean or almost empty desk, but some organization would be better for your productivity. Put your pens in one container, your paperclips and other office tools inside a box, and your papers inside the drawers with an organized filing system. It would also be helpful to not let papers stack over time or simply use less papers for work.
However, if you cannot avoid dealing with plenty of papers and even books for your work, there are plenty of creative home office ideas to hide your clutter. You may conceal your shelf with a curtain or create customized cabinets to hold your electronic devices including your printers in.
Keep resources within reach
Just like in the office, your home office design should allow you to keep your resources within reach to avoid interruption in your focus and workflow. If you need to refer to your documents from time to time, then make sure that your desk is near its shelf and not placed across the room. Similarly, if you need to deal with making and receiving phone calls, then you would want to put your telephone right on your desk.
You should also consider checking out space-saving desks like the executive tables or storages like office steel cabinets from Ellcad, a general contractor in the Philippines. These kind of home office furniture may keep your commonly used office items organized yet near you. Additionally, it should also be easier to move around your home office without standing if you have a smooth and comfortable swivel chair. Take your time in choosing the most comfortable chair for you, and make sure that it fits well in your home office space.
Last but definitely not the least, do not forget to reflect some personality into your home office design! Placing your favorite plants near you, displaying your photographs and artworks on the wall, and having a creative and functional items like a table lamp are some great office décor ideas.
If you have a personal style, do not hesitate to incorporate it into your home office design! It might even be a big help in motivating you to work productively at home.