Dear colleagues,

In the light of the current situation in the world with COVID-19, remote working has become a business necessity for the majority of companies worldwide. There are multiple benefits for employees with home office setup, which include more flexibility, improved productivity, greater job satisfaction, saving on travel costs and commuting time, improved work-life balance and working environment which suits individual needs.

Still, it does present a significant change from everyday work habits and the routine we are all used to. Therefore, OIP gathered some useful tips from various professional articles on what are the best ways to stay efficient and keep your spirits up.

1. Get dressed

For the majority of us, the idea of staying in pyjamas all day is the most tempting aspect of working from home. But taking a shower/bath and getting dressed will not only improve your state of mind, it will psychologically prepare you to start working effectively.

Some people find that dressing more formally is helpful, and also useful if they need to dial into a video call. But for many others, the point of getting dressed is being forced to shower and change out of the clothes they associate with sleeping, even if that means just changing into a T-shirt and jeans. Also, changing out of work clothes when you finish for the day helps your brain understand that the working day is over.

2. Establish boundaries

You should ideally be ready to start your day at the same time as you would normally arrive in your office or workplace, and finish your day at the same time. It is important to maintain your routine and go to bed at a reasonable hour so that you get enough sleep and then wake up at your usual time.

If your living space allows it, set up a specific, separate area in your home where you can set yourself up with a properly adjusted desk and chair, similar to your workplace. A big plus side to working from home is that the layout, lighting and temperature will all suit your individual needs.

If there are other people in the house, finding a space where you’re not likely to be disturbed is essential. Also, many people tend to over communicate when working from home – either wanting to ‘be seen’, or overcompensating to ensure people know what they are up to. That’s fine, but don’t go over the top. You know if you’re on task and being productive – keep yourself in check.

3. Pick up the phone

If you’re working from home, you won’t get distracted by colleagues’ conversations and other office noise, but it also means that you could spend the whole day without speaking to anyone which can be additionally isolating.

Make some time to pick up the phone and have a real conversation with your colleagues, rather than relying on an email and instant messaging. You will soon find out that this can be much more stimulating and indeed productive than a chain of emails. It is also important to keep a social connection with your work peers during this period.

4. Take regular breaks

It’s good to have a routine when you’re working from home, but work shouldn’t become monotonous, and you shouldn’t stay glued to your screen all day. It’s important to take regular screen breaks and get up from your desk and move around just as you would in an office.

Research has also found that short breaks throughout the day are more beneficial than less frequent, longer breaks.

Many home workers recommend the Pomodoro Technique, a method of time management which breaks your working day into 25-30 minute chunks. Each chunk is followed by a five minute break. This can help immensely to improve your productivity levels, you will be less tired and more motivated to complete what you’re working on.

We hope you will find some of the aforementioned advice beneficial as you start your next day from your tailor-made, fully personalized office space. We will continue posting various content relating to working from home on the days to follow, so stay tuned and as engaged as you all were this week, and will be in the weeks to follow! 

Thank you for the awesome work that you are doing, no matter what your office at the moment may be, as everywhere and anywhere we are the one and only,