• Virtual Office

10 Benefits to Keeping Your Home Office Clean Even When You Have A Virtual Background

Are you working from home? Good for you. Countless numbers of workers have discovered the joy of having a home office. However, it's essential to maintain that work atmosphere at home, especially if your office is your dining room table or similar space. To make your home office work effectively, tidy it up.

The Benefits of Keeping Your Office Clean

Virtual backgrounds for online meetings have made it easy to slack off on cleaning. If no one sees your actual surroundings, why bother to keep anything clean? The reality is that a clean environment positively affects the way you work. Consider the following potential benefits:

  1. There will be fewer distractions. A clean desk or table has less stuff to pull your eyes away from the job at hand. You can enjoy better focus for more extended periods.

  2. You may have better health. If you're the type to let snacks sit out or if you have pets roaming the house, you may be encouraging pathogens unaware. Simple steps such as wiping down keyboards and other surfaces with disinfecting cloths will help.

  3. Wondering how to make your office more productive? This is it. Due to the fewer distractions mentioned above, you can get more done. Also, you will spend less time looking for things you need because you know where they are.

  4. You will discover space you didn't know you had. If papers, files, and other detritus are put away, you'll have more room on that desk to lay out a large project.

  5. The space you have set aside as your home office will feel like one. This is an essential part of creating healthy boundaries for the work-at-home life. When you leave your office, work is done, even if it means getting up from your office chair and walking across the room.

  6. It will look more professional, and therefore you will feel more professional while working.

  7. It might make you happier. Clean and organized spaces have been shown to improve mental health. Want a brighter outlook? Improve home office.

  8. You can reduce injuries. Fewer boxes to trip over is a good thing. Also, any sharp tools will be put away where they belong instead of lurking under papers on your desk.

  9. Records will be organized. You won't be searching for receipts when tax time comes around because you've filed them. You know where contracts are and can find past purchase orders with ease.

  10. Your home office won't be an embarrassment when your friends come over for that Friday game night.

How To Keep It Clean

"Ahhh," you say, "I know I should keep it clean. But do you have any home office tips for doing that?" Of course. There's the cleaning that should be done daily, and then there's the deep cleaning that happens less frequently. Let's take a look at both.

Daily cleaning means putting everything away at the end of the workday. File those papers, stack those folders, & put those pens back in the drawer. Everything should have a place to go. If you need to buy more storage or desk organizers, do that. If you're worried about the potential spread of germs, wiping down your keyboard and desktop can be part of the daily cleaning, too.

There are many levels of deep cleaning, and you can decide what to do at each level. For example, you can try the following:

  • Weekly: Dust everything, especially the computer equipment. Sweep or vacuum the floor. Take out the trash.

  • Monthly: Take care of your filing. Anything that's been sitting around or stacked up for a month gets filed or tossed. Clean the windows and baseboards—Declutter your desk drawers and any shelves you may have. Go through piled-up mail and file or discard.

  • Quarterly: Shampoo the carpets or rugs. Clean your office chair by wiping it down with a mild solution. Organize file cabinets and discard unnecessary files. Clean light fixtures and wipe down switches and outlets.

By breaking your cleaning tasks down into a hierarchy of duties, it's easier to stay on top of the clutter. You can reassess your cleaning regimen and storage system every six months and adjust accordingly.

Tips For When You Don't Have Time To Clean

Yes, cleaning does take time. So what do you do when you can't make time to get the job done the way you'd like. Of course, you can always hire a cleaning service to come in and straighten up your home office once a week. However, there are also things you can do on your own to mitigate the problem.

First, take a good look at everything in your office space. Do you need it? It's easier to keep the area tidy if it only has the essentials. After you've pared your supplies and equipment down to the must-haves, try the following:

  1. Don't ever eat at your desk and drink only water. There will be less to clean up.

  2. Get a canister of compressed air and use it on your keyboard at the end of each day.

  3. Get a larger trash can and use it daily.

  4. Keep a bin of disinfectant wipes, microfiber dusting cloths, and surface spray cleaner on a shelf near your desk, so they're easy to grab for quick daily cleaning.

  5. Have a dedicated spot for every paper, every pen, pencil, and sticky note, and make sure those items go back to those spots at the end of each day.

With these simple tips, you can keep your office clutter-free even when time is scarce and the days are long. Best of all, you will enjoy the benefits of a clean home office. Therefore the time you do have will be more efficiently used.

Take a look at your home office today. What needs to be done? Do you need more storage? Do you need to shred some files? Make a list of things to do and tackle one each day until you have an organized, practical home office space.