Working from Home Tips

Are you having to move your office job home? If not now then it might be a real possibility in the coming weeks.

We started Beany as an entirely cloud-based company to begin with and have stuck to that ever since. Our Kiwi staff work from home, or co-working spaces all around New Zealand.

Some of their personal tips are scattered around below.

 @Louis When I need a break, I like walking out into the garden, pull a few weeds, water something.

Have a dedicated work environment

One of the recurring themes is that everybody who works from home has a purpose-built space. Generally an office with a closeable door that they can go into and focus.

 @Ryan Dedicated office with “closed door” please go away family policy. 1000 lines for anyone who interrupts a video call.

Schedule your day

Some recommend breaking their day into specific tasks they need to accomplish and schedule them to avoid drifting into other things.

 @Sarah Keep structured working hours and schedule calls with clients.            

It’s important to schedule breaks too. Then you know when wandering outside or opening the fridge is a planned event and not a work avoidance strategy.

Computer Set Up

Ideally you’ll have your own computer or laptop to work on. Make sure you set it up with a decent monitor, keyboard and mouse. Being hunched over your laptop might work for an hour or two but not all day. For some, you may have no other choice but to use a family computer when working at home. In this case you need to be careful about security and accidental use of your company login for random acts of YouTube, accidental emails to clients or instant messages to the boss.

We recommend:

  • Having your own login on your computer
    • log out or lock screen when away from keyboard
    • let family use their own login
  • Learn how to set up browser profiles
    • Chrome and Firefox have user profiles which keep your work Gmail / G-Suite / Office365 accounts separate from your personal or family ones.
    • Do this to avoid emailing colleagues and clients from your personal email account.

Having trouble doing these things? Get your IT department to help or Google for solutions.

Communicate with Real People

Working from home can be a lonely time for some so keep in regular contact with your colleagues. It’s surprising how much of a team culture you can maintain while you’re apart from each other.

 @Tess I love that when I have a break from work or on the phone, I can put on some music (also helps feel like you aren’t so alone)

Set up an instant messaging system with your colleagues (like Google Hangouts or Slack) and schedule video calls with your team so you keep synced up on daily progress (use Google Meet or Microsoft Teams).