Where to find them and how you and your company can pay for them?
The pandemic has driven many working people home. Turning your home into your office takes a few important items, and making those business expenses takes more flexibility than before. Here are AirPlus’ top 10 tips on what you need to succeed from home – and how your company can best cover the costs.
For better or worse
Many of us were used to making the trip into the office to work every day before the pandemic. The work-from-home (WFH) phenomenon has come as a shock, for better or worse. Some of us celebrated the sudden flexibility and freedom from commuting while others of us (parents of kids in school?) prayed for a quick return to business as usual. As weeks became months and 2020 stretched into 2021, those of us working from home (and that’s a lot of us) stopped holding our breath for a return to the way things were. Now we’re making the most of a new normal.
The remote pivot
A big part of the new work normal consists of outfitting our home-based offices. Many companies have now had ample time to witness their business continuity maintained by a workforce in diaspora, and some – often depending on industry – have pivoted to a remote-first culture. For those of us dragging our feet to finally convert the guest room to our work corner, the time has come.
So what does it take to make a home-based workspace both efficiently professional and sustainably comfortable? Without further ado, here are our top 10 things you need to work from home…1. A mouse
A computer mouse amplifies dexterity and speed, and will make you feel at your office-best. You can use it directly with your laptop to maximize flexibility. Using a mouse also encourages you to set up shop in a more intentional spot. (We’re talking to you, guy working from bed.)
2. A desk
Do you really want to keep standing at the kitchen counter every time your husband kicks you out of the dining room for his video call? We didn’t think so. Claim a dedicated place to call your work domain.
3. An office chair
Now that you’ve taken the step to make a work kingdom, you need a throne. A modern one, with lumbar support and all those other fancy perks. Take our advice and splurge here. Your back will thank us later.
4. A monitor
Don’t stare yourself blind at your laptop screen. Monitors aren’t just bigger; they also tend to lift our necks to a healthier angle. Laptops live up to their name all too often, and have us staring at our legs. They’re great when you’re working from the coffee shop, but we’re guessing the pandemic limits that option too.
5. Noise-canceling headphones
That’s right, they’re not just for heavy metal-loving teenagers anymore. Cancel out distractions before they lead to frustrations, and stop having to ask your boss to repeat herself. Plus they’ll come in handy when you finally get to go back to that coffee shop.
6. A webcam
Ah, the professional selfie stick. Older and more streamlined computers don’t have in-built cameras and microphones but they’re essential for virtual events, which have become the norm. They’re also cheap and easy to mount.
7. A headset
Take even more control over virtual meetings by immersing yourself in the audio/video environment. A headset allows you to partake in conversations more naturally, feeling physically closer to your work counterparts. It goes a long way to bridging the work-home gap.
8. A keyboard
This is the last step in turning your laptop into a desktop. Your desk is bigger than your lap, so spread out and make the most of it. Desktop keyboards are designed for a more ergonomic experience than the portable but cramped laptop spreads.
With two more items left on our list, you’re probably already wondering where to find these things and how to pay for them. For a growing number of us, the answer to “where” is global ecommerce companies like Amazon. The answer to “how”? That’s trickier. Lucky for you, we have two more spots in our list.9. Amazon Business
Already giants of the consumer world, Amazon’s B2B solution is now also on the ascendency. Take advantage of global ecommerce for your company’s buying and selling needs to securely and transparently tap into a worldwide market. Want to know more? Don’t miss our article “Make the most of Amazon with virtual payment” coming out soon.
10. AirPlus Virtual Cards Procurement
Virtual cards are the heroes of online buying. They have two major advantages: control and data. That’s exactly what companies have struggled to hold on to with their workforce at home. With most purchases now made remotely, procurement tools and purchasing processes have to adapt.
One of the biggest challenges of so many employees around the world suddenly working from home has been that some important office policies have gone out the window. There’s no more costly example than the procurement process.
If your company has a hundred employees and each one orders just one of the items in our list, your expense report management could be overrun. Receipts would pile up from all corners of the internet and allocation would be a nightmare. Most of our current procurement systems weren’t built for large remote workforces.
AirPlus Virtual Cards are in the Mastercard network, so they’re accepted worldwide. They gather diverse and widespread transactions into single, easy-to-understand statements and invoices, saving you time by decreasing admin hassle, and saving you money by increasing visibility and compliance. They are a game changer in online corporate payment.
Virtual cards return the element of payment control to your remote work life. From the moment you create the card, you determine everything about it: set a spend limit, define the currency, make it valid for only so long, and restrict the type of purchases that can be made.
Virtual cards also enhance your payment data. Each transaction comes with more information, such as invoice number, cost center, employee number, or who generated the card. The richer your data, the more informed your purchase decisions can be.
The kicker? AirPlus Virtual Cards Procurement, our dedicated procurement solution, can be easily integrated into your existing platforms and systems. Why should something meant to save you time and money cost you any?
Ready for the future
When it comes to the perfect WFH setup, you’re now fully prepared for what to get, where to get it, and how. No one knows what the future will hold, and if those of us working from home will ever return to the office. Take our tips to heart, though, and you’ll soon make home the best office you’ve ever had.
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Our team can advice you on how you and your company can best cover these costs and increase efficiency through optimizing your procurement payment solutions. Sign up here for a free personal consultation. Our experts will be in touch to schedule a call at your earliest convenience.