Working From Home is The New Standard
The home office is becoming a standard feature in today’s home design. Here’s why: Between 2005 and 2015, the number of American workers telecommuting at least 50 percent of the time skyrocketed by 115 percent, according to the 2017 State of Telecommuting in the U.S. Employee Workforce report written about by Forbes. Further, according to a 2016 survey reported about by The New York Times, nearly 45 percent of employed Americans spent at least some time working at home or remotely.
What to Consider When Designing a Home Office
If you’re one of the many Americans working from home, a proper home office is in your cards. Here are some key questions to ask yourself if you’re taking the plunge and investing in your comfort, productivity, and career by designing your own work space.
- What role my home office play?
- Will this be my command central for my small business?
- Will clients be meeting me regularly at this space?
- Is this space for part-time work or for an occasional work-from-home day?
- Or, will this space more so be used as an organizational hub for bill paying, record keeping, and other miscellaneous life tasks that require filing?
- Will this home office be used for projects or recreation outside of my 9 to 5 like working on a literary project or computer gaming?
The design of your home office will also depend largely on your resources, style, and budget. For instance, is this office in your master bedroom, a spare bedroom, the living room? Or do you have a dedicated room to design your custom office space?
Must-Haves for Your Home Office
As you explore the uses of your home office, you will better understand what you will need to best support your tasks. Here are some relevant examples:
- Adequate desk space: If you require multiple desktop screens to conduct your work effectively or space to spread out your hand-written notes and ideas in addition to space for your laptop, extra counter surface should be a top priority.
- Sliding keyboard tray: If your work is heavily based online or on your computer, a keyboard tray or sliding drawer can be tucked away when not in use to declutter a desk and open up surface space for other use.
- Bookshelves/Opening shelving: If you’re an attorney or writer with a library of books, custom-designed bookshelves are needed to display and provide easy access to these collections.
- Floating display shelves: If your work brings you around the world, where you bring home collectibles and fine art objects, floating display shelves should be a key consideration.
- Lower desk cabinets: If you have a lot of office supplies that can look unsightly, lower desk cabinets can conceal this unruly excess as well as awkward-looking technology such as cord clutter.
- Closed upper storage cabinets: Upper storage cabinets are also great for stowing paper files and office supplies.
Closing Remarks & Pro Tips
As custom closet builders and organizational experts, we believe an abundance of open and closed storage space is the best way to keep office work neatly disguised while displaying personal touches and treasures such as art, limited edition books, and family photos. This, along with adjustable shelving and more than adequate surface space, also ensures flexibility. This is key as you may switch jobs down the line, transition into other roles, or take on different work habits in the future. A flexible work space and home office scales with you, always fitting your productivity needs.