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Four Easy Ways to Create an Effective Home Office Workstation

By Danielle Mayea, StarTech.com

Working from home comes with its distractions: whether it's children home from school, a pet needing attention, or the mere fact that there's a comfortable couch in the next room. To ensure employees stay focused and on task, it is essential they have a workspace designated to optimize productivity.

Setting up effective workstations for employees shifting to a work from home environment can be a daunting task. Laptops are key to enabling remote workstations because they offer users the option to work virtually anywhere, but using a laptop alone comes with its limitations.

To help, we've compiled a list of solutions to four common problems that professionals may run into while working from home on a laptop. These tips can help you create effective home office workstations that keep your team productive and comfortable, while staying on budget.

1)      How to stay connected to the productivity tools used at the office:

Maintaining access to all of the productivity tools you had in the office can be a challenge when you begin working from home.

While laptops are great for offering flexibility in the workplace as they're designed for mobility, port availability is often sacrificed. A docking station or multiport adapter can help combat this problem by allowing users to optimize the limited ports available on their laptop. These connectivity tools provide users with the ability to turn their laptop into a highly efficient workstation, connecting multiple monitors, gigabit ethernet, a keyboard and mouse - all through a single cable to their computer.

While there are a number of solutions available on the market, finding one that provides the connectivity options you need while staying on budget can be challenge. Multiport adapters are a great compromise to their more premium counterpart: docking stations. They provide an economic solution that can be as powerful as a docking station, in a more compact form. These products provide users with access to their essential peripherals and technologies including:

  • Additional monitors output options
  • Add USB and other ports
  • Facilitate device charging
  • Gigabit Ethernet

If you simply require additional USB port options, a USB hub is an easy solution that helps keep users connected to the tools they need most, whether it's an SD card reader or their smartphone.

If you're looking for a single product that can do it all, a docking station is a great option. A quality docking station offers an all-in-one solution, providing users with a simple way to stay connected to their productivity tools, reduce eye strain with multiple monitor access, and access a fast and secure network. These products enable the productivity of a full-scale workstation, with the portability of a laptop all through a single connection to your computer.

2)      How to reduce eye fatigue:

Working long hours on a small laptop screen can cause numerous negative effects including eye strain, headaches, and a lack of productivity. Connecting to multiple and larger displays allows users to reduce eye fatigue and boost productivity up to 44%.

To reduce eye fatigue, a simple video adapter can provide employees with a plug and play solution that transforms their 13-inch workspace into a multi-monitor workstation. There are video adapters to support a wide variety of laptop ports, including USB-A, USB-C, HDMI, DisplayPort, and Mini DisplayPort, so you're sure to find a solution that suits your needs. Additionally, don't forget the cables! A multi-monitor workstation is only as good as the connectivity tools used to enable it. When purchasing a display cable, it's important to ensure it is tested to meet industry standards. Some cables also carry a certification which helps guarantee the reliability and performance of the cable.

3)      How to ensure a fast and secure network:

When telecommuting, remaining connected to your team and office network is critical. This means ensuring device network connections are fast and secure.

The speed of your connection is critical to minimizing lag which can be frustrating and negatively impact productivity. Imagine being on a video conference call and your feed continuously freezes. A fast connection can help enable those activities which require high bandwidth.

Data privacy and security is important when employees begin working from home and organizations have less control over the security of the network employees connect to. Accessing a secure network connection is essential to ensure that the sensitive information accessed from a company's network or intranet remains protected.   

To access better network speeds and security implement USB-C and USB Ethernet adapters. These adapters make it easy to add a wired network connection to your device. As long as there is a USB or Thunderbolt 3 port available, a compact network adapter provides a quick and simple solution to network speeds and security.

4)      How to stay comfortable while working:

While this may be the most overlooked of the obstacles, the negative effects of an uncomfortable workstation shouldn't be ignored. Creating a space that's comfortable can help you stay focused and eliminate the health concerns that come with sitting hunched over a laptop for several hours a day.

To combat this issue, create an ergonomic workstation. A basic monitor mount can help save space, provide height adjustments and display rotation for comfortable viewing. If you prefer to use multiple monitors, there are a variety of mounts available that support anywhere from dual to quad monitor workstations. Also, a laptop stand can provide easy angle adjustments for more comfortable viewing and typing. To keep you comfortable wherever you're working from, consider a lightweight and portable solution.

Every home office is unique, and while the needs or challenges of individuals on your team may vary, one thing remains the same: optimizing productivity and comfort is critical. With a variety of diverse solutions available, prioritizing your team's wellness and ensuring they remain efficient and connected is easy, whether they're in the office or working from home.

For workstation connectivity essentials visit www.startech.com/home-workstations.

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Published Friday, May 08, 2020 7:27 AM by David Marshall
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