After over a year working from home, lots of employees have been called back into the office over the last few months to boost productivity and social interactions in the workplace. However, with Covid-19 cases rising dramatically again, there could be a plea for everyone to work from home once more. In this case, it is essential your IT set-up is upgraded so you can carry on performing as efficiently and effectively as you would in the office.
The UK is currently recording around 30-45,000 new cases of coronavirus every day, as a result of the faster-spreading Delta variant. This is despite nearly 46 million people having had both their vaccinations, showing just how ruthless the virus can be.
As a result, the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) has warned the government to bring back measures to limit the spread of infections, including working from home (WFH) guidelines.
Members of the committee stated: “Earlier intervention may reduce the need for more stringent, disruptive and longer-lasting measures.”
While the government has not acquiesced and brought back restrictions yet, some regions are taking matters into their own hands to manage growing numbers.
The Liverpool Health Protection Board, for instance, recently announced: “Local action is needed now, to prevent us having a winter crisis, and to keep our critical services running, including education.”
Consequently, it has advised WFH strategies to be deployed again, reducing face-to-face interactions and keeping people as safe as possible.
Matthew Ashton, director of public health in Liverpool and chair of the health protection board, told Sky News how important it is to make small changes now before it is too late.
“One of them will be working from home – clearly we don’t have the powers to tell people to work at home, but where people can, we would advise it,” said Mr Ashton.
Therefore, while you might have put away your computer chair, brought all your files back into the office, and run down your stationery stock, it is time to gear up for WFH again.
The most important thing you will need is a good internet connection, as there could be multiple members of the household using it throughout the day, particularly if everyone in the building has to be involved in video calls.
Computer World suggests looking for an internet provider that offers 50Mbps as the minimum, though if there are several people on the internet at any one time you probably want a faster connection.
“Be sure to have modern equipment supporting at least 100Mbps for wired connections (1Gbps has been common for years) and at least 802.11n for wireless ones (802.11ac is much preferred),” the publication advises.
It also recommends connecting the computer directly to the router via an Ethernet cable for the best connection.
Even though you will not be in the office, you would still be an employee, so make sure your company provides you with the set-up you require. This may include the right monitor, mouse, chair, printer, keyboard and software.
PC Mag points out that most organisations have a budget for home office equipment, so do not be put off asking what you need, whether that is a back-supporting cushion, a footstool or a new laptop.
Of course, while WFH has been part of office working for nearly two years, it was not intended to be for the long-term. Therefore, it is sensible to be willing to make compromises, such as being satisfied with wrist supports and laptop stands instead of a brand new standing desk.
Nobody wants their working space to be overrun with documents, screens and stationery, especially if they have to work in their lounge or living room. Therefore, it could be worthwhile investing in a storage system for all the computer gadgets.
For instance, Apple units are great at keeping all your iPads, MacBooks and iPhones stored neatly, and charged, in one place, so the devices are not spread all over the room. This helps keep the space tidy, helping you to clear it up at the end of the day and have a much-needed mental break from work.
For IT support in Rotherham to help you when working from home, give us a call today.