Keeping a Home Office Clean and Organized

11/10/2015



When working at home, we don’t pay that much attention to keeping things clean and organized. The lines between personal and professional life can easily get blurred, which will in turn impact the condition of the office.

When was the last time you took a look at what’s lurking beneath the piles of paper? Is a coffee-stained mug always by your computer? It may be time to reconsider your work space’s condition and do a few things in order to get it organized better.

You don’t need to spend one hour each morning on cleaning the room and doing effective de-cluttering. By focusing on a few simple things regularly, you’ll reduce the need for cleaning the office and dealing with a major mess. 
Keeping Things in the Right Drawers to Make Cleaning Easier
The more things you have piled on your desk and drawers, the bigger surface area you’ll have to dust. Sure, it’s a lot easier to throw things on top of each other. This momentary convenience, however, is going to make office cleaning day a nightmare.

You’ve taken out a couple of files to organize your documents. It’s great that you like to keep your business affairs well-structured but the same should apply to your office space.

Get in the habit of putting things back where they belong after you’re done. By keeping stationery, belongings and supplies inside the desk or file cabinet, you’ll make dusting so much easier. There are dozens of desk organizing ideas you can try and apart from keeping everything in the correct spot, these hacks will also make the space look a whole lot better.

Toss it, don’t Keep it!
When printing documents or receiving mail, chances are that you keep everything instead of throwing needless items away immediately. Sure, it’s more convenient but you’ll soon find yourself surrounded by piles and piles of paper.

The easiest thing you can do is place a recycling bin right underneath your desk. Use it to toss all of the paper that you no longer need.

The same applies to stationery you no longer need (paper clips, old pens, office equipment that doesn’t work), magazines, holiday cards you’ve gotten a few years ago from clients and partners, old credit card statements, old bills, canceled check receipts – you get the picture! Once you toss all of those items, you’ll find out that your home office is actually quite spacious.
Utilize Wall Space to the Fullest
Ignoring the available wall space is a huge mistake, especially if you have a tiny home office.

A few shelves placed strategically will make cleaning and organization a whole lot easier. Hanging a filing system instead of using a cabinet can give you a bit of open space, making you enjoy the office a whole lot more. Having fewer pieces of furniture is also the best way to simplify vacuuming and cleaning the room. 

Start with the wall space that’s usually most difficult to utilize in another way. Corners, the space above the door and the wall behind your computer can all be used to hold documents, supplies and files.


Keep Most Personal Items Out of the Office
Working from your living room? If so, making the distinction between your home and your office can be a bit difficult. By having a dedicated business space at home, however, you’ll cut clutter and also deal with distractions in the best possible way.

You may want to keep a picture or two of your family inside the home office. All other personal and family belonging, however, will need to be moved to another room.

The toys of your kids, souvenirs, craft supplies, collages, magazines, books and sports awards don’t belong in your work space. Re-organizing your home could be a difficult task but you’ll enjoy the results in the long term.
Wipe Office Equipment Clean to Kill Germs
We’ve said it a number of times alread, the technology and office equipment can be quite dirty. A keyboard, for example, can be dirtier than a toilet if it’s not cleaned regularly.

The easiest thing you can do is have anti-bacterial wipes in your home office. Get in the habit of cleaning the keyboard, your desk, the printer and even the office phone regularly. Wiping the equipment with an anti-bacterial wipe requires just a few seconds but this basic step is sufficient to keep everything pristine.

This measure is particularly important during flu season. The fact that you work from home doesn’t mean you don’t bring germs inside.
The Power of Labeling
The final home office organization tip is a bit old-school but it happens to be quite effective. Labels are perfect for keeping likes together and reducing the risk of doing your job in a cluttered, messy space.

Little, cheap stickers are usually sufficient to get things organized. You may also want to use the colored varieties. Color-coding everything will keep essentials within your reach and make it easy to get the things that you need when you need them.

Visual cues are much easier to perceive and the brain processes such information very fast. If you have a hectic and dynamic job, the use of labels is one of the simplest options for keeping your home office organized.

As you can see, a clean office requires just a bit of creativity. Once you get started with the project, you’ll actually enjoy it tremendously. Whether you want to try DIY organization hacks or buy office pieces, you’ll have a work space that’s going to be much more enjoyable and conductive of productivity.



Written by Cliff Derksen, owner of First Impressions Janitorial, 
a Winnipeg janitorial services company (www.firstimpressionsjanitorial.ca)

All photos from www.hgtv.com website.

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