Remote work has become the go-to option for many during the pandemic. There is no telling when things will return to normal, but it is clear that the desire to avoid returning to the regular office is not that high for many people.
Working from home is convenient for a number of reasons. First of all, you do not have to worry about commuting, and that saves you a lot of time. Efficiency improves as well as you are less likely to get distracted by colleagues passing by and striking a conversation with you.
Sure, a lot depends on the job, but remote work should sound like an appealing option. And to make things even more comfortable for yourself, you can take some time and spend it on working out a few important things. The list of these things is below.
Let’s start with the obvious—a computer. It is hard to imagine doing remote work without one, and you have multiple options.
A lot comes down to your needs, particularly what kind of job you are doing. Some workers run high-end software, which means that you need powerful hardware. On the other hand, some tasks are not as demanding, so you can save money on hardware pieces.
Sure, if your employer is the one paying for the computer, you might have an opportunity to splash more for it even if you do not need it, but going overboard for unjustified reasons should not be the approach.
One other thing to note is choosing between a desktop computer and a laptop. Since you are going to be working from home, a custom-built PC sounds like a better choice because you get a better deal hardware-wise for the same price that you would get a laptop. And while the portability of a laptop is a plus, it is not necessary if you are going to have the computer on your desk at home.
Next, we have computer accessories. If you are going to get a laptop, you do not have to worry about things like a webcam, mouse (trackpad), keyboard, and microphone since these accessories are usually integrated into laptops. However, you might still want to consider a cooling pad to avoid overheating.
Desktop computers, on the other hand, require accessories, and you will need to pick ones that feel comfortable to use. Most notably, it is picking between mechanical and membrane keyboards.
Regardless of what computer you have, a comfortable chair is a must, so you feel good when working. You do not want to damage your back, which is a possibility since you are going to be spending a lot of time in front of a computer’s screen.
In case you have to deal with a lot of computer data, an external hard drive is worth a shout as well. There are tools to free up storage on a computer, and it is recommended to try them, but relying on cleaner software is not always enough. That is where an external storage accessory would come in.
Besides the work software you use all the time (such as designing or writing software), you will also need to think about what other tools you need.
One of the things that stand out right away would have to be time-tracking software. Some people work on a project basis, but there are those who are paid by the hour. Monitoring your time is necessary in such cases.
Communication is also a priority, particularly if you have colleagues that you need to share information on a regular basis. Sending emails seems a bit outdated, so it makes sense to use communication platforms like Slack. Doing so allows you to make calls, record and share video instructions, submit and receive messages instantly, and these things help workers avoid miscommunication.
Taking care of potential distractions is another priority when working remotely. Be it other people you live with or your neighbors, failing to set boundaries will result in conflicts. Explain that you are working and they should not bother you.
Distractions can also come from your smartphone. Browsing social media can be tempting, and you are more likely to do that if you fail to disable notifications on the smartphone while working.
Procrastination is one of the biggest productivity killers, and you want to eliminate the potential distractions as much as possible.
The last thing you need is motivation. This one might seem like a stretch, but it can be difficult to work in an environment that you associate with leisure. That is how many view their home. Not to mention that you do not have colleagues around you working.
Figure out what works for you as a way to motivate yourself. Perhaps you have something to look forward to at the end of the day, such as playing video games or watching TV series? Or maybe you aspire to get better at your job and make more money or move to a different position?