If you are going to be working at home, you will want a dedicated office space which promotes productivity. The way to go about this is with thoughtful office design and decorating, both of which can be used to create a better, more inspiring and more productive workspace. With a few tips and tricks, you can transform any home office – big or small – into a haven for focused working which is also both comfortable and attractive.
Separate the area
One of the best things you can do to keep your home office feeling like a place of work is to clearly separate it out, creating a designated space. Having this physical separation will help you get in the productive work mindset when you are in the office area, instead of the relaxing frame of mind in your extended home environment.
Whether you can turn a whole room into a dedicated office or you use a bookcase, curtain or divider to carve out your workspace, this segmentation will aid your concentration and promote undisrupted privacy. Furthermore, by designing a dedicated workspace, you can ensure that work stays in the office area, instead of encroaching across your home. This can be an issue for people who work from home but being able to segment the workspace can help you maintain that work/life balance.
Equipment and storage
Ensuring that you have the right equipment, furniture and storage in your home office is vital for effective and efficient working. One of the biggest mistakes you can make when designing your home office is not incorporating enough storage. Without ample storage, your workspace can quickly become messy and chaotic. A messy, cluttered environment is not only unpleasant, it is distracting and has been proven to reduce productivity. Get it right from the offset by incorporating fitted furniture with plenty of built-in storage.
Layout and ergonomics
You should consider everything you will need in your home office – whether that’s a computer and a printer or an artist’s lightbox and plenty of desk space – and make sure there’s a convenient space for all equipment. For example, you don’t want to find you have to cram your printer under your desk if you’re using it every few hours. With bespoke furniture which is tailored to your needs, you can make sure your office is truly suited to your needs and workflow.
In addition to making sure the layout of your office works for you, you should pay attention to ergonomics. You’ll be spending a lot of time in this space and, with a personal workspace, you have the opportunity to make the space comfortable as well as efficient. Look for ergonomic chairs, foot rests, keyboards and mice and make sure your desk and monitors are at the correct heights.
Good lighting is essential for your office. Plentiful light can help you minimise eye strain and maximise energy. Just make sure that you place your computer at an angle from light sources to avoid unpleasant glare. Making full use of natural daylight will help create a bright, fresh feeling workspace. A combination of general and task lighting should also be utilised for dull days or dark winters though – dimmer switches are great for keeping light levels comfortable.
Finally, don’t be afraid to put your stamp on the home office space. Too often, corporate offices opt for uninspiring shades of grey when decorating – in your home office you can select a colour scheme and artwork which you love to be surrounded by. Maybe you want to incorporate splashes of warming, creativity-enhancing yellow or a gallery wall full of different blue tones to encourage calm, focus and mental stimulation. By putting in personal touches when you decorate a home office, you can create a space you enjoy working in.