Because of the government measures to deal with the global crisis (covid-19) a large number of people have to work from home. What started last year with working from the kitchen table became more permanent than anyone hoped. So it’s time to reconsider your working place and maybe to increase your health, happiness and overall productivity with some upgrades for your Home Office.
First topic: ergonomics. Using just a laptop accidentally is not a big issue, but using only a laptop for a longer time can seriously cause physical hurt to your back, shoulders, neck and arms. The quickest win here is to use a separate keyboard and mouse. The next step is either a laptop stand (you can also use a set of books), but even better is a separate display that you connect to the laptop.
Some of the monitors are not adjustable for optimal ergonomics. I therefore bought the Blitzwolf Monitor Stand so the monitor could be adjusted to the optimal height. Another factor that one should not underestimate is the working chair. There is a reason that most offices have expensive ergonomic chairs. When you have to work from home, you can ask your boss if you can borrow your office chair for the time being, but when that is no option please look for a chair that is better for your back than the average office chair.
Communication & Focus
Most of us have to stay in touch with our colleagues several times a day. The tools in your Home Office for that are simple, but prices went up the moment the crisis started. For example the webcams, some even doubled in prices and stock levels are still low. We tested the Xiaomi webcam, a 1080p webcam that comes at a fraction of the costs compared to the major webcam brands. The Xiaomi is less than half the price.
When you want to focus you can use a good Noise cancelling headphone, but the same applies for them: good ones are expensive. A while ago we reviewed a number of noise cancelling headphones that perform really well but are a fraction of the price. You can also use them to take calls from your home office. So you can work will the neighbors kids are making a lot of noise.
Xiaomi Mijia HD Webcam pc€23,00
Health & Comfort
We noticed that having good light makes a world of difference. Not just a normal lamp, but a lamp that have the right color temperature so you wake up better and be more focused throughout the day. The most common light bulbs have a yellowish color temperature, which is not optimal when you need to be productive. You can buy an expensive color therapy lamp, but you can get just as far with a smart led light bulb. If you don’t have a smart home system or hub, just go for a Tuya RGB lamp. They have color scenario profiles and you can choose the focus mode. By linking the lamps in the Tuya Smart Life app, you can combine the lamps and synchronize the color temperature throughout your whole home office.
Most of us spend longer periods (and overall more time) behind our computer during the working day. Where you first had face to face meetings, now everything moved to digital. The risk of spending more time behind your computer is that your tighten up your muscles. If you notice this, take a small walk (if possible: outside). However, if it is to late, you can use a massage pillow or unit to loosen your muscles.