10_Easy_Steps_To_An_Organized_Home_Office

					10 Easy Steps To An Organized Home Office

Word Count:
924

Summary:
Without the structure of an office outside of our homes, it is easy to
scatter anything work related all over the house. We still need to
complete our work in a timely and efficient manner. After all, the less
time we spend working, the more time we have with our family. An
organized home office will make for a faster and more pleasant workday.
Here are a few ideas to get you and your home office organized.

1) Do you have a home office? You don’t necessarily need an entire...


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Article Body:
Without the structure of an office outside of our homes, it is easy to
scatter anything work related all over the house. We still need to
complete our work in a timely and efficient manner. After all, the less
time we spend working, the more time we have with our family. An
organized home office will make for a faster and more pleasant workday.
Here are a few ideas to get you and your home office organized.

1) Do you have a home office? You don’t necessarily need an entire room,
but you should have a well-defined space to contain all your office
essentials and files.

A desk in your bedroom that will hold your files, paper, pens, calculator
and of course computer will do fine, especially in the beginning.

If your “office” consists of the dining room table, some of the drawers
in your kitchen, a file cabinet in the basement and the computer in the
bedroom, you may want to think about organizing everything in one spot.

Are you spending a lot of time searching for a particular document,
running from room to room to find it? Consider moving all your files and
papers to one central location, preferably close to the computer if
that’s where you are doing the bulk of your work.

2) Keep your personal files and papers separate from your business
things.

You will eventually have enough paperwork to deal with without having
your personal bills, magazines and the kids’ after-school schedule mixed
in there. Create a separate spot for those somewhere outside of your home
office space.
3) Create a file system that works for you. Remember, you may be working
for someone else, but when it comes to your home office, you are your own
boss.

Think about how you look for a particular file or piece of paper. What
will be the easiest way for you to find it? Then create a file system
that works for you. Don’t worry, if you don’t get it right the first
time, you can always resort and try again. Sooner or later you will come
up with a system that is “just right” for you.

4) Take a good look   at your work area. Do you have piles of papers,
files, mail, floppy   discs and CDs lying around? Do you notice anything
else piling up? Set   aside a few hours and put everything away. Use your
new file system and   find “homes” for anything else.

5) Now that you have your office organized, set aside a few minutes at
the end of your workday to keep it that way. Try to “leave work” for the
day with a clean, empty desk. You will appreciate it the next morning.
This will also prevent you from ever coming across a huge pile of papers
again.

6) Add a personal touch to your office. Bring in some pictures of the
kids; add some pretty plants, inspirational quotes, or anything else you
can think of that will make your office a pleasant place to work in. In
addition to getting and keeping you in a good mood whenever you step in
your office, you are more likely to keep it clean and organized if it is
a place you treasure. So splurge a little on some special office décor.

7) Let’s talk about the files on your computer. You can waist just as
much time searching for an online document as for a piece of paper. If
your computer is used for work as well as for personal use, create a work
folder and use subfolders for particular employers, projects etc.

Again, come up with a file system that works for you and keep your work
files separate from your personal files. This is particularly important
if other family members access the computer as well. If that’s the case,
and you are using Windows XP, I strongly recommend setting up a separate
user account just for work and password protecting it. This will prevent
other family members from accidentally changing or deleting your work
files.

8) In addition to your regular files, you also want to keep your emails
organized. Let’s be honest, we have all wasted time searching for a
particular email that contained some vital information we needed fast.
Setting up folders for different clients and projects has worked well for
me, but again find a system that works for you and stick with it. Sort
the email as soon as you read it. It only takes a second or two to drop
it in the appropriate folder, but will save you a lot of time if you have
to find it later.

9) Now that you have a good filing system (both physical and digital) in
place, set aside a little time every few months (or weeks if appropriate)
to purge your files. We can quickly accumulate a lot of documents both in
our file cabinet and on our hard drive that we no longer need. At the
very least, try to purge your files twice a year.

10) Now that your office is organized, you may also want to take a look
at organizing your time. Again, come up with a system that works well for
you.

I encourage you to start with a few of these ideas to get your office and
yourself more organized. You will be surprised by how much time you will
save not searching for files, papers or the stapler. Before long, you
won’t know how you ever functioned without an organized home office.

				
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