Tips to increase focus and motivation when working from home

Home office has become the new normal for so many of us over the last year. A topic on many people’s minds is how to stay motivated whilst working from home – and how to maintain a work-life balance when home is the workplace. There are plenty of opinions and tips out there, but a simple, practical solution is to look at the tools employees are using and consider whether they’re facilitating or hindering remote work. Let’s take a look at some motivation factors for employees working from home, as well as some tools which can help bolster home office motivation.

Keeping the motivation for home office workers

Studies have shown 1 that working from home brings new challenges, such as maintaining a good work-life balance . Staying motivated whilst working at home depends, to a certain extent, on how employees manage their stress, how inspired they feel, and the tools at their disposal and these three things are also linked. So, let’s take a look at how.

The usual ways of motivating employees can also be effective for employees in their home offices. These include incentives such as offering health benefits or encouraging employee feedback and communication. They can help reduce stress and refine workflows, which, in turn, improves how inspired they feel about their work. However, these traditional ways of motivating employees do have their limits in a virtual environment. However, there are also useful tools to boost home office motivation. Before we take a closer look at these, let’s consider the barriers to motivating remote employees, so that we know what exactly the tools are designed to address.

Barriers to motivating remote employees

Tech issues are especially challenging when working from home, not only because it can take a while to resolve them, but technology is often the only means of communication with work colleagues when working from home. These kinds of issues can stress, and therefore demotivate employees if they happen regularly. When working from home, employees can also experience space issues, which might also make it harder for them to work – not everyone has a dedicated work space, which can impact motivation while working from home.

The last issue worth mentioning are all sorts of distractions: a full fridge, a washing machine beeping that the laundry is ready for drying, or a cat that doesn’t want to sleep anywhere else but on the keyboard.

home office motivation, motivation home office, home office motivation tips

How to increase focus and work motivation in the home office

So, now we’ve covered the fact that tech and communication are big factors at play when it comes to focus and motivation when working from home. Communication can be jeopardized by using old and outdated tools, which are more likely to cause tech issues. This can actually demotivate employees – no-one likes having to regularly reboot their video-conferencing software. Naturally, up-to-date and state-of-the-art tools are a great way to improve the working environment for employees, as they work as they are supposed to, meaning employees can focus on the task at hand, and not the tech gone awry.

There are several proven ways to ensure that home office work does not result in less produvtiveness, including:

  • Creating a schedule: Without a structured working day, employees might waste their time unnecessarily. Suddenly, they find that instead of working on an important project, they get easily distracted and start tidying up or playing with a pet and end up working late night hours because of it. The result is that they get lost in tasks and don’t finish them on time. A useful tool such as Wrike can keep a team up-to-date in terms of a project’s status and tasks.
  • Human interactions: Employees who live on their own and spend their days isolated in their rooms with a computer quickly lose motivation (this may even result in professional burnout). The problem can be solved, for example, by organising company online meetings or virtual team building activities .
  • Working with the right hard- and software: Providing employees with the right tools for the job is crucial. They are then able to create their own dedicated home office space with everything they need to work productively. It is not only about hardware (monitor, laptop, keyboard, or mouse) but also software. Tools for video-conferencing (e. g. Zoom or Microsoft Teams) or writing (e.g. Grammarly) will make work much easier, especially if they are easily accessible through cloud solutions and employees can use them from anywhere and on any device.
  • Time tracking: Time tracking is an important part of any remote office set up – both for employers and employees. ALSO’s time tracking solution is a great choice for those wanting to modernise their time tracking protocols. It is a digital recording tool to help track working hours, meaning that HR and managers can benefit from streamlined administration and less paperwork. It is beneficial for employees, too, as they get reliable and objective insights into their working hours.