Earlier this year, 39.1% of Canadians were working from home. That was in direct response to the onset of the pandemic, but working from home has become the new normal for many of us.
If you switched to working from home suddenly, you may have set up a makeshift space to work in your home and “made do” for a while. Now that your home has become a permanent place for you to do your job, it’s time to take another look and create a more intentional space for productive work.
Take these 5 factors into consideration to set up the perfect home office for remote work.
1. Strategically Separate Professional from Personal
It’s important to keep your professional life separate from your personal life. This is essential for business professionalism, record-keeping and tax filing, but it’s also a means of maintaining mental health and work-life balance.
If you don’t have the luxury of an entire room dedicated to your home office, you’ll have to use a shared space. The trick is to create separation without causing disruption in the flow of the space or the look of the room.
For example, if your workspace is also your guest room, you don’t want houseguests to feel like they’re intruding simply by sleeping there. If your home office is set up in your main living area, you don’t want it to be too conspicuous or to distract from the otherwise relaxing vibe of your home decor and layout.
Custom cabinetry can solve this dilemma in a few ways. By building a desk and storage specifically designed for your space, it can blend in with the rest of your home and create ideal spaces to keep files and other work items hidden when you’re not using them. A designer can come up with a look and feel that gives you the separation you need without throwing off the feel of the space for the rest of your family.
2. Keep it Clutter-Free
The tidiness of your office directly affects your work, impacting work quality, productivity and motivation.
A desk large enough for you to work at is useful, but it can easily become a clutter collector. The best way to keep your workspace clutter-free is to have a place for everything (and keep everything in its place). This is an organized office.
Even a small work area can stay free of distracting clutter with the right storage system. You need dedicated storage for files, electronics and gadgets, office supplies, and any other tools or resources you need to do your work.
Again, custom cabinetry can provide the exact amount of storage you need, complete with highly efficient extras for storing specific items (like a device-charging cabinet that keeps your phone and laptop out of the way while charging overnight).
3. Master Small Spaces
If your only option is a small space, the key is to use every inch of available wall space – floor to ceiling and even the corners. The most efficient design can keep most-needed items within reach and maximize the space to fit everything that needs to be there.
Floating shelves, corner cabinets, floor-to-ceiling cupboards or file drawers as desk legs are all functional options for the smallest of spaces.
Get creative with the location of your workspace. With the proper design, even the space under or at the top of your staircase can become a place of productivity.
4. Pay Attention to Ergonomics
You spend a lot of time at your desk. The right tools to get your work done are important, but you need to take care of your body, too. Invest in a good desk chair and pay attention to the height of your work surface to avoid injury.
The ideal height for a desk depends on what you’re using it for. If you’re writing on your desk with good old-fashioned pen and paper, you’ll benefit from a different height than someone who strictly uses their desk for a computer keyboard and mouse. If you use a combination of both, get a desk that has a keyboard tray or can be adjusted easily.
5. Have Good Lighting
Reflection off your computer screen can cause eye strain. Good lighting can reduce that, enabling you to work longer and protect your eyes.
Light also plays an important role in your productivity and quality of life. Natural light is best, but you also benefit from sufficient overhead lighting for those gloomier days or evenings when you have to work late.
Create the Perfect Home Office for Remote Work
You spend more time than ever at home these days. Without the ability to “escape” to the office – or maybe you feel deprived of the escape from the office to home – it’s important that your workspace be as comfortable, efficient, and “work-able” as possible.
An expertly designed home office can increase your productivity, improve your motivation, and benefit your health. For a free home office design consultation, contact the experts at Riverstone Kitchens & Renovations today. Let us create the workspace you need in a design you’ll love that fits within the space and budget you have.