There was a time when “going to work” meant waking up, getting into a car or boarding a train, and heading to the office.
But these days, that scenario is no longer a given. More than 40 percent of Americans work remotely at least part of the time, according to a Gallup survey released earlier this year.
And with more people working from home, the need for the right workspace has become more important. Your home office needs to provide the right kind of storage and accessibility.
With that in mind, we’ve put together this guide to designing the perfect work-from-home office.
What not to do
Entrepreneur asked Dallas architect Jo Heinz about the most common mistakes people make when setting up a home office. She listed five:
1. Inadequate storage
2. Slow, inefficient equipment
3. No space for reference materials
4. Inadequate cord and wire management
5. Thinking you can just ignore your TV
What if I don’t have much space?
You might have the luxury of using an extra room or a basement for your home work space. But if space is limited, consider these options:
- Your kitchen island – If another room isn’t available, work at your kitchen island. Many modern islands feature comfortable seating, appropriate storage and built-in power outlets that make them ideal makeshift workspaces.
- A large closet – If you have a big enough closet, you can have a home office. Just place the desk inside, then open the door to unveil your workspace when you need it.
- A bedroom nook – Do you have some extra space – or a nook – in your master bedroom? This can be a great place to set up an office, offering you more privacy than a space in your living area or kitchen.
We recognize that these might not be ideal solutions, but they will work until you are able to establish a more permanent work-from-home space (or if working from home is only an occasional thing).
Of course, if you’re spending a big chunk of your work week at home, the suggestions we listed above may not work very well, especially if you have small children running around, or live in an otherwise busy household.
The importance of being ergonomic
Whether you’re working out of a small closet space or have a room designed to be a home office, you still need to think about ergonomics. In other words, you need to make sure your work space is efficient and comfortable.
Consider the following:
1. Where you’re sitting
Does your chair provide proper lower back and arm support? Does it roll and swivel? Is the seat cushion comfortable and made of a breathable fabric? The answer to all those questions should be “Yes.”
2. The height of your desk
Your desk should be high enough that you can rest your arms on the desk and the chair’s arm rests. If you have the right chair, you can adjust its height so you’re sitting comfortably at your desk.
3. The height of your monitor
Your computer monitor should be an arm’s length from your chair, and high enough that the point three inches below the top of the screen is at eye level.
4. Your mouse and keyboard
Place these as close together as possible, and close enough to you so that your wrists can rest comfortably at your desk without having to stretch to reach your keys.
Are you looking to transform part of your home into a home office? Closets and Cabinetry can help. Our organizing professionals have spent years helping people find the most efficient use of their office space.
We won’t just install cookie-cutter units, but rather find a custom solution that matches your needs. Contact us today and we’ll get started on creating the perfect home work space for your needs.