While most everyone has spent some time working from home, many people have been doing it for years. Others have made it a more permanent thing recently. Whether you work remotely all the time or just occasionally, here are some tips to make the most of your space and your time to be as productive as possible.
How to efficiently work from home
Tip 1 – Set yourself up for success
When you’re spending a good amount of time in your home office, you want it to be comfortable and functional. Spend time to get the lighting and desk set up right so you’re not straining your eyes or body unnecessarily. Try Ikea’s office planner to see what kind of furniture and format you could have. And if your office is a separate room from the rest of your home, treat it as a separate space that’s only for work. Speaking of boundaries…
Tip 2 – Draw boundaries between your personal and business life
- Set your working hours and explain what they are to your friends, family and flatmates, letting them know you’re unavailable during this time.
- Avoid distractions. Invest in a good pair of noise-cancelling headphones. If you can work and listen to music at the same time, find playlists that help you concentrate. Do you get distracted by your phone and/or social media? Set up screen time alerts on your phone or try a website blocker like Freedom to help increase your focus.
- Don’t use the same passwords for your personal computer and work one. It’s a really basic piece of advice, but you’ll be amazed at how many people tend to ignore it. Get more tips on safety and security when working remotely.
Tip 3 – Establish a routine and stick to it
- Pay attention to when you’re most productive and do the work that suits your attention level during that time. Maybe mornings are your most creative time and afternoons are better for admin. By taking note of your energy levels, you can plan your day to be the most productive.
- Set schedules and deadlines. If you use online job management software (like WorkflowMax) you can set milestones to hold yourself accountable.
- Take regular breaks. Eat lunch away from your desk. Stretch your legs in the afternoon and go for a walk. It’s amazing how revitalising the fresh air or a change of scenery can be. If you need help sticking to a work/break schedule, try the Pomodoro Technique.
Tip 4 – Stay in contact
Sometimes working remotely can be a lonely affair that even the best Spotify playlist can’t cure. If you find yourself in this situation try the following:
- Stay in touch with your team throughout the day.
- If you do have a business office you can go to, work from there once or twice a week.
- Touch base with other freelancers or contractors in a similar position.
- Rent a co-working desk a couple of times a week to get some human contact.
- Set up coffee and lunch dates with clients and colleagues regularly.
Tip 5 – Manage your jobs with the right tools
Here at WorkflowMax we love technology that helps us stay connected, collaborate and manage our projects like Slack and Google Drive. These online systems help us to be more productive and work more efficiently.
Of course we recommend our own software if you need an end-to-end project management system. WorkflowMax gives you visibility across every stage of a project, from managing leads, quoting, time tracking and timesheet management right through to invoicing. And with the WorkflowMax mobile app, you can stay up to date wherever you are.
Further reading: We love helping you find the right working vibe – read more about working from anywhere on the WorkflowMax blog.