When you set up your home office and have the ability to work remotely, there is one thing that tends to happen: you must identify the technology and equipment that will be used on a daily basis. This fact makes it challenging to set up an office and get it running. Now that 70 percent of people globally work remotely at least one day a week, it’s time to make sure the keys to working successfully outside of an office setting are clear.
What You Need to Manage a Business Remotely
If you’re running in circles to create an office that will help you work productively, look at these 9 essential items so you can develop a streamlined list of exactly what you need to work remotely.
A Good Computer
This applies to many people since very few small business owners who can work from home can do so without a computer. Take your time and do some research so you choose a computer that meets your needs. Consider a laptop if you plan to work from places other than just your home office.
An Extra Monitor
This one is pretty obvious, but you need a monitor if you have a desktop computer. It can even be helpful – and much better for your neck – if you have a monitor to plug into your laptop. Think about the work you do; it may be smart to have dual monitors.
High Speed Internet Access
You can’t work with a dial-up connection. In order to work efficiently, you have to have a broadband connection. Find out what companies are available in your area and choose the one with the higher Mbps download speed available.
VPN, or a virtual private network, is something you need if you’ll be regularly using open hotspots and other connections on the road. When you use a secure VPN like NordVPN, you’re securing your connection when using public Wi-Fi. This digs an encrypted tunnel to ensure no one can spy on you.
A Practical Desk
It’s ideal to have a dedicated space within your home to work. If you don’t have a place for a desk, you can make another flat surface, such as a table or a counter, work well too. If you’re founding a startup, you will have to test different settings to see what works best for you. You may find that it’s better for you to set up shop at a coffee shop, library or corner café.
A Comfortable Desk Chair
Don’t rush into choosing a seat; it’s worth it to invest in a comfortable chair that provides lumbar support and is made of quality material. A chair is one of the most important elements of an efficient home office. Ergonomics and comfort should come into play when it comes to sitting for long periods of time. Test out several chairs prior to making a purchase – your back will thank you.
Adequate lighting levels are just as important to your health and comfort as having a good chair. You do not want to deal with eye strain and headaches from squinting or being unable to read. If you’re lacking natural light, consider lamps, pendant lights, wall sconces or hanging chandeliers to ensure you can see well.
Even if your goal is being paperless, there are always hard copy documents that you need to hold on to. A file cabinet is the best place to store the documents – and be able to find them as needed.
In additional to typical storage, you may want to consider using a fire-safe box to store and protect your most valuable paperwork. Small business owners often use these boxes to hold backup copies of data.
You might decide there are other items you need in your home office, depending on the type of work you do and the space you have available. Utilize this checklist to get started thinking of the essentials so you can create an efficient and streamlined office for working remotely.