We've taken time out this week to update our company Health & Safety Policy, and understand the issues placed upon employees now working from home.
Lone working, stress and mental health, working with sub-standard equipment; all items highlighted in the Health and Safety Executive guidelines for homeworkers, updated to take account of working arrangements during the coronavirus outbreak.
“Ensuring you keep in touch with your workers is key to maintaining your responsibilities to employee health and safety during these exceptional times.”
The home office is something we've long since become accustomed to here at Albyn Design & Build and we know all too well the issues that can quickly arise, once the novelty of moonwalking over to your desk in your cosy pyjamas has worn off.
Three simple steps: Discipline, Focus, Organisation
Self discipline is key to successful home working, and our key is planning your day with a simple task list to help keep your mind focussed on what needs to be complete that day, in order to remain on track for longer term goals and objectives.
Having that little list of tasks to strike through on completion of each is strangely satisfying, each little step towards the end of your list is that tiny wee boost to your self esteem, replacing that "well done" you might be used to from the golden days of shared open plan space.
Of course, there are the Zoom or Teams calls with your colleagues to keep your focus on business (that's another topic for discussion in itself...."how can I get my work down with these constant video meetings...!"), but generally you're going to be all on your lonesome completing the majority of your tasks.
Having an organised workspace is our final tip for the day. Keeping your work life separate from your home life is likely going to be the challenge, unless you are fortunate enough to already have a spare room, home office, or garden studio. Keep that pile of CDs needing alphabetised out of sight.
Oh, and take the dogs bed nearby, so that they sit there, rather than jump on your head.
Once you've got the hang of it, you might find those distractions fade away, and you are more productive than ever. Still, nothing beats a bit of juicy gossip at the water cooler.....