Flexible Working Tonic: #1 New Routines

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Microsoft has changed the way people work and the way businesses function. Office 365 offers email, data, collaboration and comms, all in the cloud, fully secure and compliant, available on demand. Work is now something you do, rather than somewhere you go! From our experience of helping customers shift to modern ways of working here’s our top tips that can help you transition into a new work from home routine.

  • Get dressed. For some people, the prospect of staying in their PJ’s all day is the most tantalizing aspect of working from home. But washing and getting dressed will not only improve your state of mind, it will psychologically prepare you to start work. Whether you need to change into business attire depends on the type of person you are and the nature of the job you have. Some people find that dressing formally is helpful, and useful if they need to dial into a video call. 
  • Establish boundaries. If you’re employed by a company, you’ll probably have set hours of work, and it’s important to stick to these when you’re working from home. Be ready to start your day at the same time as you would normally arrive in your office or workplace and finish your day at the same time.  At the end of a working day, it’s best to switch off your computer and tidy away papers and other items. Space allowing, set aside a specific, separate area in your home where you can set yourself up – ideally with a properly adjusted desk and chair, like your workplace. 
  • Connecting to the outside. We will understand that working from home can be a chore but ensuring that you have the best opportunity to connect to the outside world will help you relieve some of the frustrations. if possible if you can connect your PC or laptop directly to your broadband router via a network (Ethernet cable ) this will allow you the best connectivity. Most of us work on Wi-Fi the closer you can get to buy your Wi-Fi router is the better and stronger the signal. You may also have other people working in the household with you or streaming from Netflix or Amazon or gaming these will have an impact on your ability to run meetings via audio and video using Teams.

 Customer Storyboard: NHS Bury CCG
Customer Storyboard: NHS Bury CCG
  • Take regular breaks. It’s good to have a routine when you’re working from home, but work shouldn’t become monotonous. And you shouldn’t stay glued to your screen all day. It’s important to take regular screen breaks and get up from your desk and move around just as you would in an office. Research has also found that short breaks throughout the day are more beneficial than less frequent, longer breaks. Many home workers recommend the Pomodoro Technique, a method of time management which breaks your working day into 25-minute chunks. Each chunk is followed by a five-minute break. 
  • Get out and about (if not self-isolating). Working from home shouldn’t mean you stay cooped up indoors all day. While you might not miss your daily commute, it does guarantee that you leave the house at least once during the day. So get your shoes on, get outside and enjoy that fresh air. A different perspective will also help undo mental blocks and give you a fresh pair of eyes for any tasks you’re struggling with.  
  • Pick up the phone. You’re working from home, the chances are you’ll be alone, so you won’t get distracted by colleagues’ conversations and office noise. When you’re at work, you’re more likely to engage with colleagues but when you’re working from home, you could spend the whole day without speaking to anyone which can be isolating. Make some time to pick up the phone and have a real conversation, rather than relying on email and instant messaging.

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More reading: Work is not something you do rather than somewhere you go