The Essential Guide to “Working from home” guide V 1.0

By A R  |  18 Mar 2020  |  ERP, Growth, Popular, work from home, covid19, sars-cov-2, 

If you are reading this, the chances are that you are either working from home already or are considering working from home. I am also going to further assume that you are seeking ideas that will help you become more efficient during your work from home stint. Whatever may be the case, welcome to this Essential Guide for Working from home. 

This guide is a result of our collective experiences of working from home over the course of more than 10 years. Tips that you are going to read further in this article have either been discovered on our own or have been picked up from various sources in our quest to boost our productivity. I hope that this experience helps you in your quest to boost your productivity. So here it is, the essential guide for working from home.

Equipment

Quite the essential to begin working from home. 

  1. Internet Connection: A no brainer. A stable and preferably fast internet connection will be your channel to reach out to the rest of the world. If your internet connection is DSL, Cable or Fiber, you are good to go for the majority of the cases. Slower connection doesn't always mean that you cannot work from home. All it means is that options like remote desktop sharing, and VoIP calls will be of degraded quality.
  2. Powerful enough PC: Depending on the nature of your work, you will need a PC with a decent hardware configuration to support the apps that you’ll need to run. There are however steps that you can take to further improve upon the performance of your PC:
    1. Google Chrome Browser: Avoid this browser like how you’d avoid the plague. Google Chrome is famous for hogging the RAM and I am not even going to start on the ways it infringes on your online privacy. Just do yourself a favor, use Firefox. It's free, it's fast and above all, it respects your privacy.
    2. CCleaner: You’ll be forgiven if you call it CC Cleaner, I do this too. You can use this free app to clean temporary files and cookies that accumulate over time.
    3. Irfanview: If working with images is your thing, switch to this free, simple and powerful image viewer/editor. It’s fast with a small memory footprint and can handle batch processes.
  3. Caffeine: Probably the most critical component of the work from home guide. Without this, no work will be done. If you aren't a caffeine lover, do you even work? (r/gatekeeping). Personally, I prefer Lavaza No 5 ground coffee, the point is, have enough of your favorite coffee available around you at all times.
  4. Music: Music while working? It’s subjective and is shown to work with getting in the zone/flow state. I’d suggest that you check out a few tunes on youtube or spotify or apple music which ever you generally use. It’ll help.

Apps

These apps will make working from home a more smooth experience. 

  1. Skype: The old school, famous, widely popular and stable text/audio/video chat application by Microsoft is free to use and is available for all platforms. Face to face talks or group calls will help you brainstorm, remotely.
  2. Slack: A recent favorite, Slack has quickly become a cult. With provisions to make channels you and your team can segregate communications depending on the context. Support on all mobile devices and computing platforms, Slack  brings much more flexibility and context to work environments of today.
  3. Team viewer: Another long time classic, Team viewer is supported by PCs and Apples alike. You can use Team viewer to share your machine, or help your colleagues by remotely taking control of their systems. Though most features are free for fair use, some value added features like file transfer and LAN wakeup are available if you choose to go for the paid version.
  4. Google Drive: Free, fast and simple. Google drive allows you to work and collaborate in real time with multiple teammates on a shared document. Just create and share, it’s that simple.
  5. Asana: A free project management platform. Work with your team, manage tasks, use workflows for free. Certain advanced features will require you to go for the paid version.
  6. File sharing: Media creators/editors will need to share files, often large, with their teams in order to get the job done. We recommend:
    1. Firefox send: This free service provided by Mozilla, not only allows you to send large files across but also gives you additional features like password protection, limiting downloads based on time and/or total downloads.
    2. We Transfer: You probably know about this one. Use this to send files for free.
    3. Google Drive: You can use google’s drive service to upload heavy files and then share it with your collaborators via a link.
  7. Time Management: Working from home is quite new for a lot of people. Here are two facts straight off the bat, time flies and distractions get magnified. For accountability I suggest to use Toggl. Toggl is a free to use time logging application available on browsers and for mobile. You can log your activities and come up with ways to further boost your efficiency.

Pro tips

  1. Lists help. Make a list of things that you need to get done either on physical paper or use google keep or evernote, whatever you like. Every task you finish, strike it off.
  2. Breaks are important. Also feeling sleepy is natural too, after all we all associate our homes with rest and relaxation. Work in bursts of 45 mins and then take a 14 min break.
  3. If you use ground coffee, soak some in cold water over night and enjoy your cold brew in the morning. If you don't use ground coffee, start.
  4. Go easy on the coffee. Not more than 3 mugs a day. Though I routinely fail to limit myself to 3 mugs, I hope you’ll succeed.
  5. Slide your workouts in your day. During your break, do 25 push ups and 25 body weight squats. 4 breaks = 100 squats and 100 pushups. Nice, isn't it?
  6. If you are a WiFi user, start using a LAN cable (most routers ship with a LAN cable) to hook up directly with your router, you will experience a speed boost almost instantaneously.
  7. Don't change your morning routine. Wake up on our regular time, get ready, dress up and start your work. It might read funny but really it changes the mindset and the mindset gets stuff done.

Well I hope these time tested tips help you boost your efficiency while you work from home. Also I am publishing this post during the SARS - CoV - 2 outbreak. I hope you guys stay safe. Stay home, and stay safe.

We are Evomatiq Business Solutions, a boutique enterprise software solutions company based out of UAE. We are constantly working to bring value to businesses across all spectrum of growth. If you want to know more about what we do or if you’d like to know how we can bring value to your business, contact us today.

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