Best Working From Home Productivity Tips
Once a perk desired by many, remote work has gone a long way and become a standard way of doing business in the past few years. There was a time when employers were reluctant to introduce remote work in their workplace, fearing their employees would easily get distracted, procrastinate, or work less than those working in the office. After all, as we say it – away from the sight, away from the heart.
But not everything is black and white
Working from home productivity hugely depends on how employees perceive the tasks they’ve been given. One study from 2012 showed that in-office employees assigned to boring tasks were more likely to perform better in the office. This means, that distractions at home pose a danger only if a person dislikes the job that’s been given.
But, plenty of things changed in ten years. Remote work has become much easier since we have more tools to aid the process and stay connected. What’s more, more recent studies show that work-from-home productivity is higher, compared to in-office work. To be more precise, there’s been a 47 percent increase in productivity since March 2020. Employees spent less time avoiding work, worked almost a day and a half more each month, and took more breaks than their in-office counterparts. What’s more, WFH employees report they’re less distracted by their co-workers (and management) which allowed them to focus on the task completion.
Work-from-home productivity can be achieved easily
If you just recently switched to remote work, or you’re looking for tips on how to increase your productivity while working from home, you’re at the right spot. We’re going to share some of the most useful work-from-home productivity tips to help you thrive even in a remote setting.
Create work triggers
It’s easy to flip the switch to and out of work when we travel to the office each day. However, when we’re working remotely, getting yourself “in the zone” might be more difficult.
That’s why you should create working-from-home productivity triggers, that will prime you for work each morning. Make sure to create (and follow through) a routine each day that will signal your brain in a clear way that your workday has begun.
Having a designed work area can help, but also taking your pajamas off and dressing for a job, avoiding distractions such as turning off your TV, and avoiding social media. There’s a common belief that it takes only 21 days to form a habit. That’s why you should stick to your morning routine until it becomes automatic. After a while, you’ll see how working from home becomes much easier, and the job gets done faster.
Don’t forget to rest
When we work from the office, we get more regular breaks, compared to when we work from home. In-office, we might pause the work to chat with a coworker, spend some time going to the vending machine, make some coffee, etc. However, in a remote setting, we don’t get as many reasons to stop with work – there are no coworkers that will start a casual conversation, and we have everything we need within the reach of our hands.
It’s important to realize that working from home productivity levels might be directly connected to how much rest time we have throughout the day. That said, make sure to have regular breaks during your working hours to help you refresh and recharge. You can even try the Pomodoro Technique – what’s best, if you use Slack there’s a free app you can add to help you practice it more efficiently.
Lastly, make sure to take regular vacations and avoid burnout. WFH can sometimes be so relaxing, that you might not feel the need to take some days off. However, even the most productive and passionate workers need some time to de-stress and relax. Luckily, there’s a way that can help you (and your management) track leave more efficiently, ensuring all employees are primed for work year-round.
Vacation Tracker is an MS Teams and Slack integration that helps businesses track leave effortlessly. Given its intuitive dashboard, Vacation Tracker gives a clear overview of staff’s availability, used and non-used vacation days. It makes requesting and approving leave much easier, allowing undisturbed and productive work. If you’re intrigued by this, you can use a 7-day free trial period to see if it suits your needs.
Set ground rules with others
If you want to boost your working from home productivity levels, then you might want to set ground rules with other people in your home, as well as at work (them Slack messages can be pretty distracting). Make sure to talk with them about what things they can or cannot do during your working hours and when is the best time to message you. Explain to your family that just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you are free to do chores and don’t let them assume you can do anything during your working hours. An occasional break from the rule is okay, but it shouldn’t be a common practice.
Make a to-do list
If you’re not organized, tasks can pile up pretty easily and you could end up spending more time on things you’d usually need twenty minutes to do. That said, make sure to have a prepared to-do list for each day that will align your tasks in a clear and skimmable way. Furthermore, it wouldn’t hurt if you break bigger tasks into smaller, easier chunks, so you complete them easier and get the excitement to finish them on time.
Working from home isn’t for everyone
Working from home might be a blessing for some, but others might take it much harder. Extroverts in the workplace might feel lonely, depressed, and miserable due to the lack of human touch, and work might suffer. Whatever the problem is, these working from home productivity tips will surely help you set grounds for a productive and efficient workday, making remote work much easier.
A cat enthusiast and a cupcake maniac, Ana is a freelance Content Writer passionate about HR, productivity, and team management topics. When she’s not at her keyboard, you can find Ana in the kitchen, trying to make delicious cookies.