Knowing how to organise an office can mean the difference between a business surviving or thriving. You think we’re being overly dramatic? Perhaps, but first of all… ask yourself if you have to move things out of the way to be able to start work… Are you surrounded by piles of paperwork without a home? Are you struggling to find space for your cup of coffee? If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of those questions… it’s time to review things, because it’s likely you’re operating inefficiently.
Feeling a slight twinge now? Don’t feel bad about it; we’ve all done it. And because of that, we thought it was a good idea to offer some tips to those of you who do still suffer from this a bit.
Top ten tips on how to organise an office
- Have a purge - It’s the first thing we always say to anyone who asks about how to organise an office. Declutter. Empty. Recycle. If something doesn’t work… fix it or throw it. If a drawer has too much junk to face sorting it, pour the contents into a box/bag. Keep it for 2 weeks. If you’ve not opened it to search for something within that time… ditch the lot.
- Give everything a ‘home’ – If you have surfaces littered with stuff with no specific ‘home’, change that. Buy some office storage. Give everything a place it belongs.
- Put frequently used items in easily accessible places – Don’t shove your everyday files into the back of a cupboard. Put them on a shelf that you can access and reach really easily. Items that are rarely used can take up space behind the office fan...
- Get labelling – Seriously. Store stuff in boxes. Label them up accurately so they’re easy to identify. And put them in a cupboard.
- Clear your desk – Don’t leave it littered with paperwork every night. Put pens and stationery in a pedestal drawer. Use filing trays to keep your thoughts organised. And take those used coffee cups to the kitchen!
- Organise your pedestal drawers – Work drawers aren’t for yesterday’s half eaten flapjack. They’re for stationery and other useful work items.
- Do your filing every day – Don’t let it mount up. Get some decent filing cabinets and use them. It’s not just about clearing the piles of paperwork, it’s also about making things easy to find when you need them. You’ll save yourself hours of searching time and reduce your stress considerably.
- Create work zones – Mentally, this makes a huge difference. If you’re writing, have a desk that enables you to sit facing at a different angle to when you’re working at your computer. It helps you ‘get into the zone’ when you have a zone.
- Archive properly – If you have to keep stuff for the VAT man, do so. But don’t let it clutter up your everyday work space. Stash it away and forget about it… until it can be binned.
- Get into recycling – It’s good for the environment and helps you keep on top of the stuff you don’t need to keep. If you actively WANT to recycle, you’re more likely to actually do something with your unnecessary clutter.
So there you have it. If you’ve been wondering how you can organise an office to improve your efficiency, we recommend that you give at least a couple (if not more) of the above pointers a try. Let us know how you get on!