How to create a home office where you’d want to work

Home office

In the 21st century, more and more of us are becoming self-employed – and employers themselves are becoming more flexible about remote working. That means that many people now operate from home. Living and working in the same place can be hard to do – there are so many distractions; domestic chores, family, knocks at the door. To make a success of it, you might need to create a home office where you’d want to work and enjoy spending time. We’ve come up with a few ways that can help you attain this…

Home office desk and chair

Furniture

The first place you’ll want to start is with the furniture. If you’re going to be spending an entire working day in a room, comfort is paramount. Your office chair should be ergonomic and supportive; sitting for hours at a time can wreak havoc with the shoulders, back and spine.

If you have the space, additional office seating such as an armchair or small sofa gives you more options for activities such as reading documents and having meetings etc. It also encourages you to step away and avoid staring at your computer screen for extended periods of time.

Your desk needs to be the correct height in relationship to your office chair. Too high or too low and it will affect your posture which could cause discomfort and aches & pains.

home office desk with books and bowl of fresh fruit salad

Lighting

Natural light is the best for working. Have your desk face a window rather than away from it (glare from sunlight on a computer screen can strain your eyes). Besides, being in front of a window can be an effective distraction if the view is over a garden, landscape or cityscape. Staring out helps you think and come up with imaginative ideas!

If natural sunlight isn’t an option, your choice of electric lighting becomes even more important. A desk lamp is the next best thing. It can be positioned to shine in just the spot where it’s needed. If your desk space isn’t large enough to accommodate a lamp, an adjustable floor-standing lamp could be the answer. It is important to choose the correct wattage of bulb – nothing too dim or too bright – something around 50Watts.

Overhead fluorescent strip lights are not recommended as they can cause eye strain and lead to headaches.

Desk with box files

Environment

For you to work effectively, your home office needs to be well organised. As the saying goes, “a tidy desk leads to a tidy mind”. Move mess off your desk and into storage. Install shelves and drawers and put paper into filing trays & boxes. Use a noticeboard Uncluttered, ordered, distraction-free

Keeping your office environment tidy is just the start. Enhance the space with houseplants which purify the air. Keep healthy snacks, bottle of water, tea/coffee maker (just the smell of coffee can boost spirits) to hand.

Finally, you need to think about the ambient temperature. No one enjoys working somewhere where it’s too hot or too cold. There’s no recommended temperature – everyone’s different. However, a YouGov survey found that the average British person says their ideal temperature is 21ºC.

Home office with bright orange feature wall

Colour

There is a psychology of colour, it can subconsciously affect your mood. For instance, blue is associated with feelings of calm, green represents nature, growth and renewal, grey is sophisticated and practical, yellow is warm, energetic and uplifting. You can add colour to your working environment in many ways – a lick of paint, colourful furniture, pretty accessories.

Home office desk with inspiration wall

Inspiration & motivation

We all need inspiration and motivation at work sometimes; getting over the Wednesday hump or when Friday just seems to drag. There are visual and aural methods of improving your productivity – artworks, postcards, photos. Some people need complete silence to work, however, tuning into the radio, playing music or listing to recorded sounds from nature such as birdsong or rain showers can increase your work rate.

Hopefully, by following these tips, you’ll be able to create a home office space that makes you comfortable, productive, happy and healthy.

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How you can create a stylish and functional modern office

How you can create a stylish and functional modern office

There’s a lot that goes into designing or redesigning an office space, and you want to know that what you get is what you’ll want to keep for the foreseeable future. To help you consider some of the intricacies and considerations that will be made throughout the process, Penketh Group take you through some of the things to keep in mind when planning your office fit out.

Open-plan, modern office

Create some room

Open plan offices are a popular option when it comes to creating contemporary office spaces. They can make an office feel more spacious and friendly, while also encouraging collaboration, which can help your staff work more efficiently.

In an open plan office, some of the most common complaints made by employees are over sound privacy, and noise level. Thankfully, there are some modern-looking and stylish ways that you can help keep noise at a manageable level, while maintaining a contemporary feel around the office.

You could place some colourful wall partitions around the office, which can be used to keep different teams grouped together within the office, facilitating collaboration, while reducing noise level. Acoustic wall panels are another great option. They can be an integral part of your office’s design, while keeping noise at a manageable level throughout the office.

Colourful office partitions

However, a fully open plan office could likely benefit from some smaller individual offices, to help staff working on a tight deadline to focus in comfort and privacy. Instead of conforming to a stereotypical office.

Set out some individual work areas that provide a balance between comfort and functionality. Keep it enclosed so employees can work undisturbed, but keep it colourful and bright so they don’t feel demoralised. Many employees often feel like they need to take a break from their usual workspace once in a while, so the change of scenery can help keep them motivated.

Modern office in vintage industrial interior

Make it unique

You could design your office around certain themes and commitments that you’ve built your business around, which help reinforce those commitments in the minds of your customers, staff and competitors.

For example, if sustainability is something that’s important to you and your business, look for furniture made from recycled materials, allow a lot of natural light into the building, and place plants liberally around the office.

Plants dotted around an open-plan office

Or you might decide instead that cutting-edge technology and innovation is what defines your business. So you’d include video-conferencing facilities, touch-screen PCs, and a variety of entertainment gadgets for staff on their break, while designing the office with a minimalist and sleek look. The addition of such technology will help encourage collaboration and efficiency in the workspace, while helping to define your brand image further.

Whatever you decide that your business and office space needs the most, you’re sure to be left with an office that meets your needs perfectly, especially when it’s designed in collaboration with industry experts who know exactly how to help you the most.

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