What You Need to Work From Home
For those who are used to the amenities of an office, transitioning to working from home has almost certainly been full of unexpected challenges. But as those who have been working from home for a long time can tell you, having the right setup can make all the difference!
As the team here at Benepass has discovered, investing in a few home office upgrades has made a world of difference, not only in regards to our productivity, but also to our attitudes about the commute to work each day (spoiler alert: for most of us, it’s from our beds to our sofa).
If your employer is giving you a bit of extra money in light of recent events (a disaster payment, for example), an updated home office might be a good way to spend it, provided the items are eligible for reimbursement. But even if you’re paying out of pocket, everything on our list has a broad range of prices, so you should be able to find an option that works for your budget. Check out our recommendations below.
Furniture To Consider
A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin; what else does a man need to be happy?
— Albert Einstein
A Good Chair: Trust us — this one is a necessity. We can’t tell you what type to buy, since everyone’s lumbar needs are different, but finding a chair that’s comfortable, ergonomic, and supportive will instantly improve your WFH experience. Look for chairs with adjustable seat heights and a reclining back, for optimum comfort.
Lumbar/Seat Cushion: Happy with the chair you have, but wishing you had a little more support? These cushions are a cheaper alternative, if buying a new chair just isn’t in the cards.
Laptop Stand: Not only do these stands help prevent your laptop from overheating, they also stop you from constantly craning your neck downwards while you work. Any standard model should improve your neck strain at least marginally, but we recommend looking into an adjustable option — that way, your laptop stand can make your life easier at any angle.
Standing Desk: What if we told you there was a way to improve not only your productivity at work, but also your health? Enter the standing desk, an amazing option for those who find sitting all day a bit too oppressive. There are plenty of great places to purchase these desks, but there’s really no one desk that’s best; just find the best option for your work style and your space.
Interested in trying out new furniture, but without the financial commitment? The only downside to some of our favorites — like the standing desks — is they’re not going to be for everyone. If you want to try before you buy, consider using a furniture rental company like Feather. Not only is it a great way to try out furniture before you commit, it’s also a more eco-conscious form of consumption.
Tech To Consider
Technology is a useful servant but a dangerous master.
— Christian Lange
Good WiFi Connection: This probably goes without saying, but a slow connection means a slow turn around on projects that require WiFi. You can invest in a better router, or try a few tips and tricks to try and get the most of the one you have.
Multiple Screens: Once you switch over to using dual monitors, you’ll never be able to go back. Not only does it make it easier to see all your work at once, it can increase your productivity by a whopping 42%, according to one study.
Noise Cancelling Headphones: If you’re lucky enough to have a quiet, private space to work, these might not be a necessity for you. But, if like the rest of us, you’re currently sharing your workspace, noise cancelling headphones can be a lifesaver. If you’re an audiophile, it might be worth spending a little extra, but there are plenty of cheap options for people just looking for a bit of peace and quiet.
Things to Help You Focus
Always remember, your focus determines your reality.
— George Lucas
Blue Light Glasses: By blocking the blue light from our computer screens, blue light glasses don’t only diminish eye strain — they also help you get a better night’s sleep. If you wear glasses already it probably makes sense to get a blue light filter fitted into your existing frames; otherwise, there are plenty of affordable, fashionable frames out there.
Comfortable Clothes (Not PJs!): If you can be productive in your pajamas, more power to you! But for us, getting up and getting dressed is an important aspect of getting mentally prepared for the day. That’s not to say you can’t dress comfortably — ethical fashion brands like Softwear are a great option for those who err on the leisure side of athleisure.
Coffee Maker: Nothing wakes us up quite like the smell of a fresh pot of coffee (or tea). If you want to take this opportunity to kick your Starbucks habit, it might be worth shelling out for a French press or fancy kettle, so you can start making your favorite caffeinated beverage from home.
Questions about how else you can be using your benefits to your advantage during this difficult time? Feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.