Recent events may have led to you working from home, and can be difficult at first if you’re not used to it. In this article I’m going to list the various ways I’ve found that have helped boost my productivity and work more effectively while working from home, so you can work smarter, not harder.
Separate Work and Home Life
Keeping work compartmentalised lets you separate your work and home lives. When it’s time to finish for the day, leaving your workspace, whether that be a separate “office” room or even just a work “corner” helps you to wind down more effectively and not be constantly “on”.
Take Regular Breaks
This one can be difficult sometimes. I find I can get too immersed into my work and forget to take breaks. Make yourself a drink, go for a walk around the block, even do some cleaning if you’re in the mood – just get yourself moving. Not doing this can lead to burnout and lowered productivity.
Keep Up Good Communication
Even if you can’t talk with work colleagues directly, learn how to utilise online chat platforms effectively. Use the various features – threads, categorised chat rooms and private chats to keep everyone up to date as necessary. If you don’t have a webcam, or the one you do have is poor quality, there are apps you can install on your smartphone to turn it into a makeshift webcam. For Android, you can use the free app DroidCam. For iOS, EpocCam is a popular one.
If you haven’t already, make your workspace as similar to your actual office workspace as possible. If you use dual monitors at work, get yourself a second monitor to increase your productivity. Depending on your company, they may provide these kinds of things for you if you speak up, so it doesn’t hurt to ask!
Utilise Cloud Storage Solutions
If you keep your files saved on just one computer, or even worse, transport it back and forth between computers with a USB stick, stop it! Even if your company has a VPN set up giving you access to your work computer, utilise one of the many free cloud storage solutions such as Google Drive, Dropbox or OneDrive to keep your files safe. If you have an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, most plans come with some storage, so use it! Personally, I use Google Drive with the 100GB storage option. Yes, it costs money to use, but I can also use it to keep my personal files safe too, so it’s definitely worth it for the peace of mind.