Long hours, lots of desk work and a massive amount of screen time. Accountants – we think you deserve a healthy, safe and comfortable office set up more than most. Whether that’s a corner of the dining room table or the spare bedroom, we’ve got some inspiration and top tips to transform your working space into a place you enjoy.
Light – It’s so key. Which is why it’s our number one. Early mornings and late nights call for office lighting which keeps you focussed. If there is a window, place your work area as close to it as possible. Not only will that save energy, but it’s scientifically proven that natural light will increase productivity and wellbeing. Also, having the opportunity to gaze out into the garden and give your eyes a break will help prevent eye strain. Be sure that you have a blind which blocks glare on sunny days. And invest in some mellow overhead lighting, or a table lamp for when you need to be laser focussed. And we had to share this lamp from IKEA with you (where else?!) – it includes a wireless charger for your phone. Smart.
Desk – It’s a big investment, but we’re in this for the long run. Which is why we think a height adjustable desk is essential for the perfect home office. Standing for part of the day – rather than sitting for 8 hours, will help with posture, circulation and chronic back pain. And a sit-stand desk will also improve productivity and wellbeing at the touch of a button. Adjustable desks range from £300 to £1500. The Independent recently shared a good review with the Flytta 2 as their best buy.
If a sit-stand stand isn’t an option, make yourself move. Set a timer if you need to. Short and frequent breaks are best – 5 minutes every hour at least.
Chair – In an ideal world we’d all have a beautiful Herman Miller. They are the Rolls Royce of office chairs. But with a price tag to match. So, unless your employer is feeling particularly generous, choose a chair with:
- Adjustable height
- A supportive back rest
- A recline feature
According to the Chartered Institute of Physiotherapy, you should be sat with your bottom at the back of the seat, your forearms on your desk and elbows at a 90 degree angle and both feet flat on the ground. Imagine a piece of string running through your body out the top of your head to the ceiling keeping you upright (we bet you just adjusted your position!)
Computer – Your computer screen should be straight in front of you at arms length, and the top third of the screen should be in line with your eyes. If it isn’t, then invest in a stand. You should have a separate keyboard which allows your wrists to rest when you’re not typing. And a separate mouse which supports a straight wrist. HSE have a good guide – take a look.
Feel good – Even the smallest of spaces can be an area which makes you feel good. A plant, an air purifier, a coffee machine or some ambient sounds can make for a happy day ‘at the office’. Or why not invest some time into decorating your space. Pinterest have some really clever and inspiring ideas. That’ll make for an impressive Zoom call with your colleagues.
“Above everything, the perfect home office should be a place where you still feel part of a team.
If you’re feeling isolated and unsupported then speak to your employer. There are lots of ways to adjust home working which support your individual needs.
You might benefit from a Wellness Action Plan or some mental health support – you certainly wouldn’t be alone with that this year.
We have lots of resources available to help you, as well as a number of opportunities with progressive and forward- thinking firms offering exciting home based roles.
Why not take a look at the positions available now?”
Garry Howling, Public Practice Recruitment Ltd