Working from home can be awesome, it allows for all kinds of flexibility. But if you don’t get yourself setup correctly in a home environment, working from home can easily become a large distraction.
For many modern professionals, working from home every once in a while is a luxury that our companies gift to us to allow more flexibility for its employees. For the lucky bunch, working from home might be a little more full-time, especially if you’re self employed.
However, for a lot of folk, working from home is a new concept that has been introduced by their companies because of the current COVID-19 epidemic. As a result, a lot of people are actually starting to ask the question: can I be more productive when working from home, compared to being in an office?
Here at Bevl, we love giving people the flexibility to work remotely when they need to. So here are some tips from those who frequently call their home, their office.
Get Started Early
When you’re working in an office, your morning commute can help your body wake up and feel ready for the day by the time you reach your desk. However, now you’re at home, transitioning from the bed to the desk doesn’t quite get your blood pumping like it used to.
Try waking up at your usual time (rather than 8:55AM) and have a shower, a good breakfast and really wake up before you start work.
Working from home can be a highly productive routine; but only if you actually treat it as your work routine and not your “I can have an extra half an hour in bed”, routine.
Structure your day like any day in the office
When working from home, you’re your own personal manager. Without things like an in-person meeting schedule to break up your day, you can be quick to lose focus or burn out.
To stay on schedule, segment what you’ll do and when over the course of the day. If you have an online calendar, create personal events and reminders that tell you when to shift gears and start on new tasks.
If you’re currently using WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger or Email to contact you’re work colleagues, stop what you’re doing, and get your team on Slack.
Slack is the go-to messaging platform for businesses. Think instant notifications combined with file sharing and topic grouping. You can create channels based on particular things; such as creating an “accounts” channel, where all accounting discussions can take place.
Slack is a great way to focus a team and get all your companies internal communications in one place.
Choose a dedicated place to work
Just because you’re not in your usual office, doesn’t mean you can create a new office of your own. One with all your comforts to get you through the day.
Rather than cooping yourself up in your room or on the sofa, try creating a space that is actually focused on work, rather than leisure. Sitting up-right at a table certainly helps.
Match your music to the task at hand
During the week, music is the soundtrack to your career (cheesy, but admit it, it’s true). And at work, the best playlists are diverse playlists — you can listen to music that matches the energy of the project you’re working on. Video game soundtracks are excellent at this. In the game itself, this lyric-free music is designed to help you focus; it only makes sense that it would help you focus on your work as well.
Zoom is a great way to keep up-to-date with your team. Rather than speaking over the phone, actually engage with your team by having video calls and video conferences. It sounds like it would be expensive, but Zoom’s starter account is free and offers some great deals for larger teams.
Having used the platform a lot myself, it is my go to for having calls with colleagues and clients. The recording feature of Zoom is particularly handy, too.
Plan out what you’ll be working on ahead of time
Spending time figuring out what you’ll do today can take away from actually doing those things. And, you’ll have planned your task list so recently that you can be tempted to change your schedule on the fly.
It’s important to let your agenda change if you need it to, but it’s equally as important to commit to an agenda that outlines every assignment before you begin. Try solidifying your schedule the day before, making it feel more official when you wake up the next day to get started on it.
I know I know, we’re a FileMaker development company, so that is why we are promoting FileMaker in this article? Well, yes and no.
We live and breath FileMaker as a productivity platform for getting things done between teams. We host all our in-house applications in our cloud, so we can all communicate and work as a team using the same files, projects and tools to get the job done. This comes into its element when working from home, so we thought FileMaker deserved a place in this article.
Without FileMaker, our efficiency and productivity would be no where near as high as it is today. No matter where all the guys and gals at Bevl are located, we can all access the same files and information as each other, with the help of FileMaker Pro and FileMaker Server.