Whether you work in an office or at home, we all need an area to call our own when it comes to working. And it’s important to make sure this space is a pleasant and organised place where we feel productive and focused.
Few things are more distracting than piles of clutter and week-old coffee stains, so here are five of the best tricks to get your office space organised and keep it neat and clean with minimal effort.
1. Organise first, clean second. There’s no point in getting your office sparkling clean if you then move dusty items around and cover your newly-cleaned desk in all that dirt again.
Decide what to throw away, recycle, or even donate. The remove all of these items from your office before you tackle the grime.
2. Ditch the paperwork. We all have a constant pile of papers we need to sort through in our office. Invoices, letters from your children’s school, receipts that need to be filed…the paperwork builds up quickly, and it’s easy to keep putting it off.
Sort your papers into categories, and bin anything that’s no longer relevant (yes, I’m talking about that receipt for the toaster you bought 3 years ago!). File into labelled folders for easy access.
Keep on top of future paper pile-ups by creating an inbox which you sort through once a week. To save even more space: scan all your papers and just keep digital copies. You can print out anything you need at a later date.
3. Organise for time saving. Items you use regularly – paper, sticky notes, pens, etc. – should be within easy reach of your desk chair. There’s no point spending time looking for them five times a day!
Items you use less often can be stored away in cupboards, drawers, containers, or on shelves. Make a list of where you’ve stored these items as you organise, so you can refer to it and save even more time when you next need to search for something.
4. Recycle and organise at the same time. There’s no need to buy expensive containers – you can use many household items to organise the things in your office.
Use your old toilet paper rolls to organise and store unused cables. Just thread the cables through the middle of the tube and keep wrapping them round. They can then be easily stacked on top of each other (tangle-free) in an old shoe box or drawer.
An ice cube tray, or even an egg box, is a perfect solution to store and organise all your small items like pins, paper clips, and coins.
5. Keep on top of the cleaning. It’s all too easy for us to forget to clean our offices and desks. But given how much time we spend in this spot, it’s particularly important to keep it spick and span.
Simply spend five minutes at the end of each day wiping down your desk with antibac wipes or some vinegar mixed with water, remembering to get underneath all your equipment. This is especially important if you work from home and have sticky-fingered kiddies running in and out of your office space.
Once a week, do a slightly more thorough clean. Your mouse and keyboard are covered in germs from being in contact with your hands so much, so clean these with a cloth dampened with rubbing alcohol. Remember not to soak the cloth, and to only plug the mouse and keyboard back in when they’re 100% dry!
So follow these top five tips to get your office space neat, tidy, and clean. The nicer your office space, the easier it will be to spend time there – and maybe even be more productive in the process. With just a bit of organisation and a few cleaning tricks, you’ll be running the world from your desk chair in no time.
Natalie always has a cleaning or organisation trick up her sleeve. She’s learned these tips working for Helpling, a platform connecting people with local cleaners in Sydney and Melbourne.