Working from home is becoming more widespread as employers understand the benefits it can have, not only on the morale of their staff but in levels of productivity. If you have recently made the switch to homeworking then this guide is just for you. Here are our top tips for working from home.
Working from home not only cuts your commute down to zero, it can also improve flexibility around how and when you work and the structure of your day. Studies have shown increases in productivity from people that work from home, they get sick less often and generally have a greater sense of morale.
This could be because the lack of commute has a positive impact on health and wellbeing and that work can be more focussed without distractions of a busy workplace.
- Get organised
It can be easy to drift around your day without really achieving anything. Section your day out into deep or more focussed work, answering email, phone calls, meetings etc. If you have flexibility over what you do when, ensure that your most productive times are when you are at your desk ploughing through your workload.
- Take breaks
It can be easy to sit at your desk all day without colleagues to go and see or popping out to grab lunch. Make sure you take regular breaks throughout the day, even if that means taking a few minutes each hour to get up, stretch and wander about the house. Try to make sure you have a proper break for lunch, a good way of ensuring you do this is to take a short walk, come back and sit in a different room to eat lunch.
- Remove distractions
It can be easy to get distracted by the washing piling up or that electricity bill you’ve been meaning to sort out. Make sure you can’t see these things from your workspace and again, schedule time into your day to deal with them and move to another room to do it if you are finding it difficult to separate work and the more personal tasks.
- Create a designated workspace
If working from home is going to be a long term thing then creating a separate room, where you can shut yourself off from the rest of the household is the way to go. If you don’t have a spare bedroom currently, then converting your loft can be a great way to create extra space. Positioning yourself at the top of the house can make it less tempting for family members to ask you questions. If you can’t dedicate a whole room, then wherever you do set up your workspace, try and keep it purely for work, as clutter free as possible and make it as nice an environment as possible to spend time in.
- Dress for work
It might sound like a great idea to sit around all day in your pyjamas, but part of being in the right frame of mind is dressing for work. That doesn’t mean you need to be suited and booted, but simply dressing in the same way you if you were going into your workplace. That may mean a pair of jeans and a shirt or blouse, but sitting at your desk in your pyjamas should be left for later in the evening.
- Getting your ‘people fix’
One of the few downsides of working from home is the lack of human interaction. It might mean that you go into the office once a week, but if your role is completely remote you may feel more isolated. There are however, some things that can help. Why not try using the telephone instead of relying on email. Move to a coffee shop a few times a week to get out of the house. Try and space out client/supplier visits. Attend local networking events with other businesses. These are just a few things you could do.