Working from Home: Creating an Effective Home Office

Canadian companies are raising the bar. Employees have asked, and employers have decided to answer. And thanks to an advancement in technology, more and more companies are allowing employees to work from home. According to a survey done by IWG, 70% of Canadian employees work remotely at least one day a week, 53% work remotely for half of the week or more and 11% work remotely five times a week. With an increase in Canadians working from home, we want to make sure your home office is set up to help you effectively work from home.

Choosing a Space for your Home Office

The first thing you need to consider when it comes to working from home is where are you going to work. If your first thought is that your bedroom is going to be your office, and your bed is going to be your desk, we want to offer you a different perspective. The division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard explains that when you begin to work from your bedroom, you begin to associate it with work. This association makes it challenging to get a good quality sleep, which can have a negative impact on your productivity at work.

To separate your work environment from your home environment, we suggest choosing a dedicated area in your home for your office space. Ideally, this space should be in a quiet area that has some level of privacy and is relatively free of distractions, so you can focus on your work. By having a designated area in your home for work, at the end of the work day you'll be able to leave your work in your office, enter your home, relax and take the mental break that you deserve.

Choosing Equipment for your Home Office

Think about the equipment that you use when you work from your company's main office. They probably supply you with a computer and the programs you need, a desk, a chair, access to a printer, pen, paper and more. While some of the equipment such as your laptop, pen and paper are easy to move between locations, it would be difficult to do the same with that comfortable chair or standing desk that helps you get through the day. While this may encourage you to use your bed as your work station, this is not a good idea. Working from bed can lead to aches and pains that your equipment at work is trying to help you avoid.

We suggest that you invest in an ergonomic work station for your home office. An ergonomic work station will prevent prolonged neck extension and bad posture that leads to body pains. This may include a sit-stand desk, a footrest, an adjustable/comfortable office chair, etc. By having the proper work station and equipment easily available, you'll avoid getting the distracting pain that could have a negative impact on your work.

Choosing Lighting for your Home Office

It may not be something that you would regularly think about, but it is important to consider lighting. The reason why lighting is so important is that it affects productivity in the workspace. Think about it, when you work with poor lighting, your eyes tend to get strained, leading to a lack of productivity in the workplace. Therefore, we suggest choosing a home office space with as much natural light as possible. We understand that this is not always possible, so investing in overhead lights and desk lamps, can help improve the lighting in your home office. By setting up your home office with the proper lighting, you will have access to the balanced lighting you need to minimize strain on your eyes.

Are you ready to create your home office?

Working from home is a great option and ensuring you have the proper workspace can make all the difference in your productivity level. So, if you haven't started already, now is the perfect time to begin and create or improve your home office!