For many international companies like Tech Data, the process of preparing for work-from-home (WFH) started weeks ago. This meant providing colleagues with the right tech devices, testing our systems and VPN capacity, and communicating important messages and updates to our colleagues. Apart from supporting our own colleagues in getting set up to work remotely, we have also been guiding our partners in transitioning their work forces offsite. Here are some of our tips for getting started.
Get the tech
Tech Data’s Director of Peripherals in Europe, Mara Pereira recommends to, “start by thinking about the essential tech devices you use when working at the office. Your core device will most likely be a laptop. From there, consider accompanying accessories which will help you to perform your daily responsibilities and communicate with customers, team members and key stakeholders.”
If you have an additional monitor, this will help to reduce strain on eyes and increase agility when working on multiple projects. A laptop keyboard is fine for short-term use, but over time may contribute to back and shoulder tension, wrist injury, and bad posture. For this reason, a mouse and a keyboard are ideal for long-term usage. A webcam and quality headset are key elements for seamless communication. Make sure to test that all devices are working beforehand to avoid delays or last-minute IT issues.
Lastly, it is crucial to ensure proper network access which is compatible with your standard home network. Range extenders and routers can help ensure proper bandwidth to support multiple information exchanges and communication at any time. If you’re using a virtual conference room solution such as Webex, Zoom, or Skype, this may require additional enhancement accessories and/or a higher internet bandwidth.
Create a comfortable atmosphere
It is possible to create an ideal work environment even in a small, shared space. First, find a flat area to put your laptop or computer. Make sure the room has access to enough light, both natural and artificial to help see your keyboard and work space. Ideally, it would have a window to let fresh air flow. Possibly the most important element of your home office is your chair. Choose a chair which allows your feet to lay flat on the floor, has a supportive back, and is made out of a comfortable material which allows you to maintain good posture while providing ease of movement.
Set alarms and boundaries
For people who are used to having a separate work and home environment, creating a home office routine and setting boundaries is essential. This means maintaining a similar schedule and hours as you would when working from your office. Take time away from the computer to have lunch and set an alarm at least every hour to get up and stretch.
For parents working from home, this means setting up a space nearby for your kids to play and, if possible, coordinating with other family members during meetings or times that you need to focus on a certain task.
Creating work-life boundaries can greatly influence the success of your WFH experience. According to Mara, “remote working can motivate people to be more responsible and increase productivity, while allowing the company to expand their territory and explore new business opportunities. However, it’s important to remember at the end of the day to close your computer and clear your desk just as if you were at the office.”
Although you may not be able to duplicate your exact office scenery at home, following these tips will help to ensure a smooth transition in creating your new space and routine. For more information on Tech Data’s peripherals product offering, including recommended WFH tech bundles, check HERE.
For more information on remote meetings and online collaboration tools, check out Tech Data’s Maverick AV solutions.