We’ve all heard of the big tech giants who launched their careers from their garages or basements. With the growing popularity of remote working, especially in the tech industry, more and more people are turning their homes into hives of productivity.
Working from home is extremely rewarding; however, it isn’t all fun and games. There might be distractions lurking around your house like dirty clothes or unfinished chores, but there are also unexpected problems that you might face.
Here are nonnegotiables when it comes to working from home:
Reliable and Fast Internet
This might be the number one problem freelancers, and remote workers face. If your internet connection goes down, so do all of your working hours for that day because, like telecommuters, we need to be connected to our work servers. If you’re using a wireless service, make sure it’s reliable and has strong enough signals throughout your home. Remember: no connection means no pay!
If you find yourself in the very unfortunate scenario where you don’t have any internet at home or if you’re work requires very fast connections like video conferencing, make sure to invest in reliable and stable broadband or mobile internet subscription.
A Solid Computer
You need a workhorse if you want to run a business from home. You don’t need to splurge on a Mac, but you do have to have a reliable computing machine. If your computer crashes or doesn’t start up, it can be very detrimental to your work as well as to all of the important files you’re storing in there.
It is important to note that your machine should be dedicated just for work and not shared by other family members; if you want to use it for other applications, make sure you save everything to an external drive.
Time and Space to Work
Working from home is great, but sometimes, we need a separate workspace where we can focus and block out distractions like the TV or kids running around. Of course, not everyone has the luxury of having their own office, so if you can’t, be sure to set aside a place in your house where you can work undisturbed.
If you want to have some “me time” after work, don’t forget that working from home denies you the joys of going out with friends after a long day at the office. You’ll still need your personal time to rejuvenate and spend with your family.
You will experience power outages if ever something wrong happens to the main electrical switchboard of your house. Don’t go unprepared: always have extra batteries and chargers on hand because losing electricity during work hours equates to losing money.
Work Station Isolation Station
There might be distractions inside and outside your home, but it’s important to remove yourself from them so you can fully concentrate on your work. Make sure you have a separate room for working where family members will not enter without knocking first.
Another thing: don’t forget to silence your phone! If you’re expecting calls from clients, keep your cell phone somewhere far away from where it cannot reach.
A Noise Cancelling Headset
Have children? or is your apartment near the train tracks? A noise-canceling headset is the only way to go when working from home. You can’t work in peace if there are distractions around you all the time, so make sure to buy one!
Yes, You Need an A/C!
An HVAC or air conditioning system is necessary, especially during summertime. Take good care of your health by keeping cool and comfortable at home. It will also keep your computers and laptops running smoothly for years to come.
Electronics like laptops and desktops can be sensitive to heat, especially when working around the clock.
A Place for Everything
One of the many problems most telecommuters face is clutter. If you don’t have a designated space where you can put all your things like documents, cables, phone books, portable drives, etc., chances are they’ll pile up, and you’ll lose track of them.
Make sure to designate a few drawers and cabinets where you can put all your things and make sure they’re organized in separate compartments. This way, everything is where it should be when you need them.
A Coffee Maker
Working from home sounds like a dream come true, but you won’t get anything done without proper energy. Working in an open space can make you sleepy, especially when it’s sunny outside, so make sure to drink up on some coffee (or tea!) for extra strength and focus. You might also need some caffeine after eating lunch because it can put you to sleep right away. (We’ve all been there!)
As a freelancer or small business owner, you’re expected to do more in less time. That’s why it’s important to have the right equipment and supplies when starting; you’ll need them when things get busy. To make sure you stay productive, always check that your essentials are working well at all times.