Bored of staring at the same four walls while you work? You’re not alone! Switching your home office for an outdoors set up is just one way to reap the benefits of remote working, particularly as we enter the summer. Aside from the obvious benefit of spending the working day soaking up the sun, working outside can also boost productivity, whilst providing you with a healthy dose of Vitamin D. We can probably all agree this sounds like a great recipe for beating the Monday blues, but how do you actually pull it off? Here’s how to build a garden office that’s just as inspiring as it is functional.
Section Off A Workspace
We all know how important maintaining a work/life balance is for protecting our personal time and sanity. When working from home, it’s important to create a working area that’s separate from the rest of the house, and this is no different when thinking about how to build a garden office. With this in mind, it’s best to start by selecting a designated ‘office’ area in your garden. This may be a corner tucked away at the back of the garden, a spot on the decking, or, if you’re feeling particularly fancy, you may want to set up your office in a designated summer house. Do whatever works for you and your outdoor space. What’s important is designating a quiet spot where you can get into the zone.
Set Up Shelter From The Sunlight
The sunshine isn’t usually something we complain about, particularly when we don’t see a lot of it in the UK. Whilst the idea of working in the sun is idyllic, the reality can be a little less charming when you haven’t got the right set up. The glare from the sun can be a real pain when you’re trying to work on a laptop. Not to mention, it’s really not good for your eyes. With this in mind, a crucial step in how to build a garden office is protecting your setup from the glare that’s created by the sun. If you’re working in a summer house, this won’t be so much of a problem, however if you’ve got an open set up then putting up screens, parasols or a pergola with a canopy is the best way to combat the sun’s reflection.
Create A Comfortable ‘Desk’
Ergonomics are still important when you’re taking your office outside. Comfort is key, however just make sure your setup isn’t so relaxing that you want to take a snooze in the sun (you can save this for lunchtime!). Finding a practical table and chairs that support your back is key. Avoid sofa chairs as these won’t provide you with the support you need for working, and are likely to make you feel more like it’s a saturday afternoon than a Monday morning. Bistro sets with high back chairs can be a great option for outdoor offices, providing you with a compact ‘desk’ and are altogether more practical seating options. You may just need to add a lumbar support pillow for extra back support. Alternatively, you could consider a stand up desk riser. Standing is a flexible option for working in the garden that can help ease back pain and combat inactivity.
Incorporate Plants & Soft Furnishings
The look and feel of your workspace can have a big influence on motivation and inspiration. Adding a few hints of colour is an important tip for how to build a garden office that inspires productivity and positivity. Colourful cushions are an easy way to lift the space, whilst making the setup feel more professional and less like a glamorised corner of your garden. Plants and greenery are another lifesaver when creating a productive working space, so make sure to fill your new office with plenty of pots and planters. Research suggests that plants boost productivity whilst reducing stress, which is definitely a benefit we can get behind. Not to mention, they drastically improve your zoom background game!
Boost The Wifi
Knowing how to build a garden office that’s actually functional is very different to knowing how to build a garden office that just looks good on the surface. As we rely on the internet for remote working, wifi connection is a really important consideration. The internet connection in larger gardens can be iffy at the best of times. In order to prevent slow loading speeds and muffled zoom calls when working outdoors, we’d recommend installing a wifi range extender. This is a clever piece of tech that repeats the wireless signal from your router and pushes it out further to expand its coverage. You’ll also need an outdoor extension cord so that you can keep all of your electronics charged up from the garden.
For more inspiration on how to build a garden office space successfully, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with the IOL team.