Creating a home office always seems like a great idea at the time. You are past working from your knee on the sofa whilst binge-watching all of Netflix. But once you get into the who, what and where of setting up a real home office it can get confusing to differentiate what you require to be able to competently work from home and what you simply want!
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Different people and job roles require specific items to be able to complete their work. This will be something your employer will inform you of if you’re working from home for an employer. However, for freelancers, there is a great deal of flexibility that comes with creating a productive working environment at home.
One area you should focus on when creating your home office is ergonomics. An ergonomic workspace has the user at the heart of everything and is designed in a way that reduces stress, strain, or injury to the user. This means making sure your desk is at an appropriate height and you can comfortably sit on it from your office chair. Your chair needs to be able to support your body to make sure you are comfortable all day. Shorter people may find it beneficial to add a footstool under the table to allow them to sit at a position that helps them keep their postures and reduce strain on the body.
Keeping your screen at eye level so you aren’t straining your neck is also vital as is having wrist support if you use an external mouse along with blue light filters to reduce eye strain and headaches along with appropriate lighting and the right working temperature to avoid overheating, being too cold or generally uncomfortable. Investing in an ergonomic keyboard - these usually come split in two to accommodate the arms and hand’s natural positions more and a mouse to reduce wrist movement will be a welcome benefit for those who spend a lot of time typing during the day and night.
An ergonomic home office will enable you to do your job more efficiently and reduce distractions and the risk of injury or illness from inadequate working conditions no matter where you are.
What else do you need to enable you to efficiently work from home?
It goes without saying that if you are working from home you need a good reliable internet connection. It may be fun to use the free coffee shop wifi but this can be unreliable at best and security is always an issue especially when you are dealing with sensitive data. Creating a home office will require you to invest in the best internet connection available to you to allow you to do what you need to do without worrying about dropped connections or slow download speeds. There is nothing more frustrating than a slow or intermittent internet connection. So before you make any other purchase, get yourself hooked up with a reliable internet provider.
You need some sort of computer equipment to work from when creating a home office. smartphones are capable of many things but for some tasks, you need a desktop PC or a laptop. If you work outside of your home frequently or move from place to place, then investing in a small and lightweight laptop that is powerful is vital. Check those specs and make sure you pick a suitable system for what you are using it for. For some hobby bloggers, a Chromebook or even tablet with an attached keyboard can do what they need it to do day in day out. However for those who need to multitask and take on heavier jobs, then you need one with specs that can handle you putting it through its paces.
If you chose a windows laptop then chances are it will automatically come preinstalled with Windows 10. If not, then you will need to know how to find the windows 10 product key to make sure you are set up and ready to go to allow you to hit the ground running.
A Second Monitor
For those who have more than one task on the go at any one time, then investing in a second monitor can help you become more organized and allow you to keep on top of everything you have going on. Second-hand monitors can be pretty cheap even brand new can come in at around $100 or less if you’re looking for a 22-inch screen.
Headphones with a Mic
Whether you are drowning out background noise with music or streaming your favorite movie, investing in a set with a built-in mic will help you seamlessly switch between watching and listening to conversing. Headphones will help you to block out any background noise during calls and while many laptops and computers have built-in mics, they won’t be able to filter out noise around you should you be in a loud environment.
External Hard Drive
If your pc is low on storage, then an external hard drive should be your next investment. All you need to do is plug the drive into your pc or laptop and transfer over the files. Hard Drives come in different sizes depending on the type of storage you need. Video editors or photographers may need bigger storage than someone simply saving personal pictures of family or a few documents they can’t lose/
Music producers, video editors, or those recording training sessions or hosting meetings will benefit from the addition of external speakers plugged into their set up. you will get more sound than many speakers on your pc or laptop and for a relatively little expense, it can make all the difference when completing certain tasks.
Think Amazon Echo Show devices. Set these up in your home office and use them to set reminders to make phone calls, reply to emails, or chase up contacts. Get information on different time zones, the weather, or even to help you out if you get stuck. Content writers can benefit greatly from using this service when fact-checking or needing to know the specific product information or more.