Working from home is often convenient. Many people prefer to manage their time by taking advantage of a home office. However, arranging workspace in the same house as you sleep, eat, and watch TV could be tough.
Even if you don’t work from home every day, a home-based office is a place you store documents, make calls, solve serious problems, and much more. To do that, you have to be comfortable and highly organized. In this article, we’ll share a few tips on how to optimize your home office space, thus helping you increase productivity.
1. Arrange Storage for Documents
This goes for both your papers and your e-mail. Before clearing anything off the desk or out of the inbox, you need to know where to put it. You can arrange a temporary document box where you put all the new documents. Then, at least once a week, you should find time to clear it out.
Whether it’s file cabinets or simple boxes, you need to know which documents go where. Label drawers and containers to have an easier time organizing. Consider color-coding your filing system to speed up the process. You can have one color for financial documents, another for personal documents, etc.
2. Clean Your Desk Every Day
Cleaning your desk every evening may seem to be a useless thing to do since you’d have the clutter back the next morning. However, decluttering and organizing every day could help you avoid losing documents and save time on a lengthy search for items you need the most.
It’s easy to lose something on a cluttered desk. You are likely to need something fast at the most inconvenient moment. Looking for it for hours could mean unsatisfied clients or even lost deals. Meanwhile, coming to a clean desk every morning can do wonders for improving your work.
3. Remove Excess Paper
Home offices are often cluttered with paper. When you start the organization process and designate filing cabinets or boxes, you’ll have a place to put all that paper. However, before filing, take a good look at what you are about to put away. Could it be shredded and forgotten about?
Many people tend to keep expired documents “just in case”. Don’t become one of them or your home office could turn into a big trashcan.
Consider going digital. Scan documents and store them on the cloud. This way you can declutter your home while simplifying access to the most important paperwork.
According to a Florida business broker Cress V. Diglio, many company owners with a home office struggle to find the necessary documents because of overly cluttered space. This could negatively affect the sale of a business.
4. Consider a Wireless Printer
If you have a small home office with a not-so-big desk, it may not fit a printer. Consider investing in a wireless machine and placing it in a different part of the room. Make sure you have a drawer or cabinet space for keeping printer supplies.
5. Buy Containers for Office Supplies
You probably have many pens, staplers, paper, and other office supplies lying around. Consider getting a container to store all your office supplies when they aren’t in use. This tip is especially important for people, who don’t have a separate room for their home office. Mixing household items and office supplies could turn your workday into a constant search for things you need.
6. Use Wall Space
Whether you have a small home office or a large room for your in-house office needs, consider using wall space. Hanging shelves and filing systems on the wall could save you space while making the home office appear tidier.
7. Zone Your Office Space
If you don’t have a separate room for your home office, you need to zone your office space. One of the most effective ways to zone an office is to install sliding doors. They can create an excellent impression of privacy.
Cheaper methods include zoning with cabinets, bookshelves, and curtains. Whatever you do, you should have at least a small private spot for work.
8. Get a Large Trashcan
If you deal with large amounts of paperwork, your trashcan gets overfilled quickly. Papers spill on the floor, making your home office appear untidy. An easy way out is to invest in a large trashcan or a couple of small ones. Also, consider getting a powerful shredder with a sizeable bin for easier decluttering.
9. Fight the Wire Problem
No matter how much equipment you have, you may face a wire problem. Tangled wires and cables aren’t just unsightly, they may pose a tripping or fire threat. Take the time to arrange all the cords neatly.
To reduce the number of cables, you may want to put away equipment you don’t use to often or invest in wireless devices. Wireless mice, keyboards, printers could help you fight the wire problem while making your office appear tidier. Also, consider using a USB hub that lets you plug several devices into your computer with just one USB cable.
10. Get a Comfortable Chair
One thing you shouldn’t try to save on is your computer chair. It should be as large and comfortable as possible. Make sure it has wheels so you can move around your office space without getting off the chair. Invest in a rug or a large mat in order not to ruin the flooring.
11. Take Advantage of Natural Light
Try to put your home office desk near a window to get as much natural light as possible. This can boost your productivity while keeping your mood up. Some people choose to make home offices in closet space or hallways. Remember, even though such an approach saves space, it could lower your output.
Take advantage of the above tips to make your home office as organized and as comfortable as possible. You may be surprised how well a slight extra organization effort can reflect on your work.