Work From Home Initiative
Boris Johnson told the public that they should work from home where possible. The recommendation was made in an attempt to contain the UK coronavirus outbreak.
Keeping employees apart from each other will reduce the chance of spread. The virus could be caught in the communal spaces at work, as well as on the person’s commute. So, companies around the UK have instigated mandatory remote work.
Transitioning to WFH
Shifting to a ‘home office’ has become the new normal for many of us. But some employees will be working from home for the first time. Figuring out how to stay focused in a new environment and avoiding going stir crazy is a difficult task.
With tools such as Zoom, Slack, Google Suite, OneDrive and WhatsApp has made the transition much easier. Although many people have struggled to find the right make-shift desk and chair to sit at while working for 8 hours a day.
Benefits of Working From Home
- No commute so you can enjoy a lay-in, spend some time to yourself or make a hearty breakfast.
- Save money on transport (car, bus, train) as well as that morning coffee you may grab on the go.
- Wear comfy clothes that wouldn’t be satisfactory for a general office environment.
- Enjoy your own music/favourite radio station and not the same office radio every day.
- Get help from your four-legged, furry office helpers.
Tips on How to Work From Home
Maybe you can't seem to stay focused when you're not in the office. Or maybe you can't keep your work life separate from your home life. Read on to find out some helpful tips on how to work from home.
If you're currently on furlough, read out blog for ideas on What to do on Furlough.
Having regular communication with your team is key to productivity. We’d recommend having at least 30 minutes a day talking to your manager and team.
Whether you use Skype, Microsoft Teams, Zoom or WhatsApp it's great to be able to ask a quick question to a colleague who sits right next to you. Don’t just email them. Message them. Call them. Video call them. From our experience, the instant response you get is much better than sending an email.
Your Home Office
One of the most important aspects about working from home is your workspace. You can’t do your job well if you’re working from your bed on a small laptop screen. It’s just not possible, no matter how much students swear by it.
Get out of bed and find yourself a workspace that's clear from any home clutter. If possible, situate yourself nearby a window so you get a nice view instead of staring blankly at a wall.
The Right Furniture
Get yourself a table that’s large enough to accommodate the equipment you’ll be using. It needs to be close by to a plug socket to power your laptop/desktop screen(s).
A good-sized monitor or laptop screen is going to help you be more productive.
Your chair is also important for your posture. Get yourself good back support so you don’t suffer the consequences after an 8-hour day on a wooden dining chair.
Your normal office day is broken up by meetings, quick office chats, making coffee, going to the toilet, lunch breaks, etc. When you’re sat at home, you shouldn’t stick by your screen for the whole day.
Experts say to work in short bursts. Every hour move away from your screen for 5 minutes. Have a quick break and you’ll be much more refreshed when you get back to work.
It’s incredibly important to remember to have your lunch break. Whether you put your feet up and relax or do a quick workout, getting away from your desk helps to split up your day.
Remember to Live
Set yourself realistic expectations at work. Don’t underwork, but don’t try and overwork either. Create a list and if you achieve more than you set out to, you’ll feel satisfied.
If you’re working from home, it can get lonely. Make sure you don’t isolate yourself from human contact and communicate with those around you. Be sociable with your work colleagues, friends and family. Although we may not be able to go outside, we can still call or video chat with people.
Stick to a Routine
Keeping your normal routine will help you to distinguish between work and home.
- Wake up at your usual time and spend any free moments to yourself
- Get changed out of your pyjamas into something comfortable but not too scruffy
- ‘Commute’ to your workstation (it should be separate from where you sleep)