Article written by Rachel Joan
Exclusively for OAK PARK HOME HARDWARE
In 2021, approximately 45% of companies in the United States use a hybrid working model. Because partial remote working conditions remain so widespread, it’s important for employees to make their homes conducive to productivity. And one of the best ways to do this is to create a study that is primarily dedicated to work.
To design a study that feels homey while still promoting productivity, it’s important to consider the following ideas:
It’s important to adapt your workspace to your body’s needs. If you choose furniture without ergonomic design in mind, you put yourself at the risk of repetitive strain injury (RSI). RSI occurs when you spend too much time in awkward and unnatural positions; the symptoms, such as stiffness, weakness, and pain in affected areas (often the wrists and neck), may hinder your productivity.
One of the main specific elements of a home study that puts you at risk of discomfort and/or RSI is an uncomfortable chair. Desks that force you to slouch can be culprits as well. Considering these potential issues, it's best to choose furniture designed with the body’s needs and limitations in mind. Ergonomic chairs allow you to sit comfortably while staying productive. You can also choose height-adjustable desks that enable you to transition between sitting and standing while you work.
Install High-Speed Internet
In a world where hybrid work is becoming the norm, it’s nearly impossible to stay productive without good internet connectivity. Start by doing some research on the best internet providers in your area. Then, find your router. You'll be able to start with a list of your chosen providers' plans and compatible routers. From there, consider the tech specs; the PCB (or printed circuit board) in your router should be built for strong signal integrity to ensure that incoming and outgoing signals and data are transmitted efficiently.
Once you've picked a router that is compatible with your provider and capable of optimal signal transmission, consider where you're going to place it. Many tend to shove routers into empty corners or even drawers. Generally however, it is best to place these machines high above the ground so that other objects don't get in the way of wireless connections.
Once you've taken all these steps, you'll be far less likely to run into connectivity issues.
Find A Space With Natural Light
If you want to keep your space warm and inviting while staying motivated at work, it's wise to move your desk and chair to a space with more sunlight.
Due to its positive effects on physical health, natural light can be particularly effective at boosting productivity. First and foremost, it helps you to get more of your daily Vitamin D, even indoors. Additionally, sunlight promotes the production of serotonin and melatonin in the brain, which in turn is likely to boost your mood while you work. If possible, install larger windows or alter your curtain or shutter arrangement to allow more sunlight inside.
Keep Wires Orderly
A work-at-home tends to involve a lot of wires: router wires, printer wires, computer plugs, phone chargers, etc. All of these tend to be in active use. When you keep your wires disorganized though, trying to manage them can eat up a decent chunk of your time. Plus, the general sense of clutter is disheartening to many, even if only on a subconscious level.
Manage your cords by keeping them untangled. You can group together common cords by fastening them together (not too tightly!) with zip ties. It may also help to attach labels to each wire to make each cord easier to distinguish.
Maintain Good Décor
You can also make your work environment feel more inviting by keeping your study nicely decorated. Choose office accessories that have personality; a paperweight in the shape of an artistic sculpture can add a pop of life to your desk, for instance, where an out-of-use coffee mug full of old pens would just make it look drab. Similarly, keepsake boxes with abstract designs can be soothing to look at as you work, while bland trays for poker are less than inspiring.
By using office accessories that are both aesthetically pleasing and functional, you can reduce clutter and brighten up the workspace all at once.
As hybrid working conditions remain the norm worldwide, workers need to look into their homes and find spaces that can be conducive to office work. By paying attention to ergonomics, lighting, connectivity, order, and décor, you can create a study that promotes both warmth and productivity.