When you start setting up your home office, one of two things tends to happen. Either you can't easily identify the hardware and technology you use every day, so you underestimate what you'll need to get your office up and running and you'll quickly find yourself in trouble. Either you clearly see every item you might need and are overwhelmed with meeting every one of those needs down to the last basic. Here is a list of what you need when doing your home office.
This will apply to most businesses, as very few small business owners who are able to work from home can get their work done without a computer. Do your research so you can select a computer that meets your specific needs. You should consider a laptop if you want to create a mobile office in addition to your home office.
High Speed Internet Access
Gone are the days when it was possible to work with a modem connection. To work effectively online, a broadband connection is essential.
Ideally, you will have space for a traditional desk on which you will create an ergonomic workstation. If you need to get creative, you can use a table, counter, or other flat surface.
A laminator, also known as a laminator, allows you to laminate important documents so they'll be kept longer, via laminator pouches. This machine could be of enormous service to you!
Take the time to choose and invest in a comfortable chair ; it's one of the most important elements of an effective home office. Again, ergonomics and comfort matter when it comes to sitting, so be sure to test out your future chair before making a purchase.
A good chair is important for an ergonomic office, as is an adequate level of lighting. You don't want to deal with headaches and eye strain caused by squinting or using lighting that makes it difficult to read.
Telephone and/or VoIP
With VoIP technology, Internet-based phone services, and even mobile phones, you may not need a traditional landline phone, but you will generally need phone service when working from home.
Some small business owners simply need access to word processing, spreadsheet, and email management applications, while others require additional software tailored to their needs. Make a list of the software you will need to run your home office.
A network router is not always necessary if several computers need Internet access. Consider a wireless router if you have a laptop and computers located in different parts of your home.
Often overlooked, a surge protector should be a staple in any home office using computer equipment.
Printer or multi-purpose machine
If you have a paperless office, you might be able to get by without going to a printer, but there may be times when you need to scan, fax, and even make copies. If this is common in your business, look for versatile machines that can handle all of these tasks.
Backup drive or personal server
Once your home office is up and running, you need to have a plan for backing up and protecting your data. You can use cloud-based backup services to copy your files automatically, but it's also a good idea to consider setting up an internal backup. External drives and personal servers are relatively affordable and can save your business in the event of a computer crash.
Uninterruptible power supply (UPS)
A UPS provides backup power for a limited time in the event of a power outage, as it can provide you with useful buffer time to save your labor and shut down your equipment safely.
Even if you want to be paperless, you still need to keep some paper documents. The best place to store these documents – and be able to find them later – is in a filing cabinet.
Where will you keep pens, sticky notes, paper, folders, ink, business cards and other supplies? Consider purchasing a bookcase or shelving unit to store unused items in your home office.
Speaking of storage, you can use a safe to store and protect your most important business documents. Many small business owners also use these durable boxes to keep backup copies of their data.