Solutions - 22 January 2021
Creating a home office: ideas and solutions for a flexible and functional smart working
The global pandemic and the resulting social distancing policies have led an increasing number of workers from both the public and private sectors, as well as freelancers, to work from home in a so-called “smart working” modality.
This situation has changed the way we inhabit and perceive our own home, no longer just the place of our daily routine but rather a space that can host meetings, educational courses and remote discussions with colleagues.
Consequently, the need of living and working in appropriate spaces has increasingly grown: actual working stations for smart working have become essential, and their setting up requires more than just a computer and a good Internet connection. Those who have already experienced this line of work are well aware of the importance of creating a comfortable and functional space that can boost your productivity even within the domestic space.
But is it really possible to create a home office when there is no room specifically designed for this purpose? By using the right furnishing solutions designed for smart working, it certainly is. Here is our advice on how to design a home office to the highest standards within a living space.
Your office, whenever and wherever you want it
During the lockdown, the transition of the workplace towards the home environment has initially led to inevitable compromises, as well as uncomfortable and often improvised arrangements.
Over time, however, the need to optimize the domestic spaces by using clever and flexible solutions for smart working has become increasingly important.
In particular, the trend of opting for so-called “solutions on the move”, namely modular furniture and transforming systems able to combine multiple functions, has increased.
This allows to create an office wherever and whenever it is needed, without altering the existing spaces, but rather infusing them with a breath of new life. Our transforming systems are able to create fluid and dynamic living spaces, where everything is at your fingertips.
How to organize a home office: new needs for smart working
Lifestyle changes, with more hours allocated to remote work, require flexible spaces. This need, leads to articulate discussions on what is necessary for smart working.
There are two key points: space and order. For this reason, home offices are generally created within the living area, being the most appropriate space to fit a multipurpose wall or double-function solutions.
Let’s take as an example our Space 22, able to incorporate the sleeping area, the sofa and the home office along a single wall. How?
Thanks to the combination offered by Penelope Sofa Next, the transforming system featuring a tilting double bed, sofa, bookshelf, and Home Office, a working station that only appears when needed. The integrated desk grommet, LED lighting, and shelves for organizing documents and objects help ensure that every item stays in place in this convenient and comfortable work station.
Office corner in the bedroom
Besides the living area, it is also possible to create a study corner in the bedroom. The latest living needs have indeed prompted us to re-organize spaces that were previously considered inseparable from their main function, thus enhancing their potential.
The bedroom is no exception. Even in this case, transforming pieces of furniture play a key role: they blend into the environment without overlapping, transform themselves according to different requirements, and incorporate all the necessary functions throughout the day.
Our transforming system Penelope 2 Board, combining a large writing desk, a bookcase and a tilting double bed, allows to create a comfortable and functional work station in the bedroom.
Thanks to its pivoting system, the work desk can be opened and closed as needed. This feature eliminates the need to remove the items from your desk.
Penelope 2 Board
Home office: the right furniture for smart working
Regardless of the size, the design of the available space should be functional. To achieve this goal, the following three factors should be carefully considered:
- Desk. When considering how to setup a smart working environment, laptops are the first element that comes to mind. And their dimensions should also be carefully considered: since laptops are becoming increasingly more compact, the work table can also have a reduced size.
A good alternative to the classic desk is a smart working desk: just opt for a pull-out table/desk, such as our App, fitted into a case element with closing flapping door. It can be opened and used during work sessions, and then it can be closed again.
Another option is a table with tilting opening such as Wally, which adds a touch of freshness and dynamism to your space while taking up a minimal amount of space: it is only 15 cm deep when closed.
Or Girò, a console with a retractable table featuring a bifold opening system to be placed along the wall.
In order to ensure a correct sitting position, a key factor to consider is the desk height from the floor, so that your back lies perpendicular to your thighs and your legs form a 90° angle.
- Ergonomic chair. It is the highlight of every working station, especially for those who need to be seated several hours per day. If you choose a swivel chair, the best option is a 4 or 5 spoke base since it provides more stability. The chair should preferably be height-adjustable, so that the feet can touch the floor while the bent knees and elbows form a right angle.
The backrest has to be reclinable and possibly upholstered with expanded polyurethane, a material that can easily adapt to the shape of your back. Alternatively, should a traditional office chair not suit your space, you can still opt for a chair with a soft shell and a large base, and add a lumbar support and a footrest. Height-adjustable office stools are also a suitable option.
- Shelves and drawers to store documents and objects. Boxes on wheels represent a smart solution. If available, you can take advantage of the portion of the wall vertically by choosing open furniture solutions featuring shelves just 25 cm deep. In order to divide a bigger area to create a more private office corner, the best solution is an open bookcase.
These elements, joined with the transforming systems, only take up a minimal amount of space, leaving plenty of room for the other purposes of the environment.
Innovative ideas for smart working
In addition to the furniture, there are other small yet essential measures to further enhance the efficiency of your working station and organize your smart working space.
Do not overlook the importance of lighting: if your space has windows, try to use as much natural light as possible, positioning your desk so that the light beam hits the screen from the sides rather than from the back or the front. This arrangement contributes to reduce eyestrain and improves the energy efficiency of your space.
Nevertheless, a certain amount of artificial light is always needed. LED task lights represent the best option, featuring arms to direct the light cone and a dimmer to regulate its intensity.
Finally, ornamental plants. They help you focus, stimulate your mental balance and ensure a healthier air. A recent study suggests that workplaces filled with houseplants can increase productivity by 15%. Ficus and Sansevieria are amongst the most recommendable plants.
It should be noted that in times such as these, where the physical and psychological resilience of each one of us is put to a test, it is essential to create a home office able to fully meet our need of wellness through comfortable and adequate spaces.
Now that you have a better idea on how to shape your smart working corner, all you can do is… start working! Clei solutions allow you to fully enjoy your home spaces, even when they transform into working environments.