Working from home can be incredibly convenient. There’s no commute, the savings on overall food costs, as well as the comfort of working from your own home.

In today’s digital age, working from home has become a viable option for many individuals. Some of today’s largest companies are providing the added value for employees to work at home, or allow for a combination of office and virtual work. Having a virtual office can reduce overhead, provide employees with flexible schedules, improve moral, and allow for access to a larger talent pool, worldwide. With the amount of available online collaboration and productivity tools, staying organized and productive has never been easier.

Despite the numerous benefits associated with working from home, there are still a few drawbacks. If you’re not careful, working remotely can be quite isolating. Even though offices have their own set of struggles, it’s nice to be able to stop by your coworker’s desk for a brief catch-up. And as much as you might love your accommodations, they are likely smaller than your average office. In our case, our team often keep in touch with each other, throughout the day, via phone calls or Skype. At times, this can be difficult when there is a deadline looming.

It’s easy to see that working in a virtual setting has its pros and cons. Not every business is suited for a virtual office, but with the wide availability of online tools, it’s becoming easier to work in this type of setting. If you’re thinking of starting, or are already have, a virtual office, these next tips can go a long way in ensuring everyone is happy and productive.

  1. Get into a routine. Do whatever you need to get yourself into work mode. Go for a morning run, have a shower, and get dressed. Make yourself a cup of coffee, and then settle into your workload. Make a schedule and stick to it. It’s easy to get sidetracked if you don’t have a plan for what you’d like to accomplish throughout the day.
  2. Set aside a specific work spot. This is crucial to getting into a work mentality. Avoid your bed and your couch, or the work you’ll produce will likely suffer. If you can, invest in a desk and ensure you’re comfortable, and seated upright. That being said, make sure you’re standing and stretching at least once every hour.
  3. Schedule lunch and after work outings with friends and clients. Your workplace will be limited, so it’s important to get out of the house and interact with the outside world.
  4. Spend at least one morning a week at your favourite coffee shop. Sure, coffee shops aren’t the same as offices, but a change of scenery is good for creativity. Maybe you’ll meet other people working remotely as well.
  5. Keep a regular schedule. It’s easy to get sucked into the vortex of checking your emails 24/7 and being constantly available. While it’s important that you remain on task and are reachable during regular business hours, try to spend your evenings and weekends away from your workstation.