According to a survey by Office Max, 77% of Americans feel like disorganization has a negative impact on their productivity, while 53% say disorganization negatively affects their motivation.
In order to maintain a professional and organized work environment, large corporations often spend a lot of money on the upkeep of their offices. If you run a small or midsize business (SMB), there are ways to maintain a clean work environment without breaking the budget. Here are some tips for keeping your office space organized and in top form.
1) Use proper storage for everything
When you don’t have a proper place to put items—files, pens, calculators, etc.—clutter is the result. While a desk with drawers is a great start, filing cabinets, shelves and even storage cabinets allow for you to neatly stash all the small items needed to run your business.
Used filing cabinets are a cheaper option than purchasing new ones. Have a closet with shelves to store your work items and make sure to label everything so you can find it when you need it. Each shelf can be designated for specific items, such as one for binders and another for pens and pencils or small office supplies.
2) Get rid of what you don’t use
A messy desk usually builds up over time. To keep desktop clutter to a minimum, try this tactic: Take any paper or item that is normally on, in or around your desk and put it in a box. As you need an item, remove it from the box and return it to your desk. After a week has passed, whatever is left in the box must either go to another storage area or be recycled. Anything that has not been used in a week should not be visible in your workspace.
3) Move to a paperless office
Clutter in the office often builds up from printing emails, forms, receipts or other paper transactions. There are a variety of apps and programs that allow you to save your information online. From there, you can save it, organize it and share it with others. Not only will this create less paper waste, but it is also kinder to the environment.
4) Shop around for cleaning supplies
While you don’t want to skimp on frequency of cleanings, especially in the office bathrooms and kitchen, you can save a lot of money by being budget conscious when buying cleaning products and other supplies. Tips for saving money on cleaning supplies include:
Buying the store brand instead of the name brand. Compare active ingredients. Often the store brand has the same stuff in it for less than half the price.
Use subscription services (like Amazon.com) or buy in bulk to save money.
Be a minimalist with cleaning supplies. A vacuum with a hard floor cleaning feature can mean you don’t have to continually purchase mops. Buying a versatile spray cleaner can eliminate the need to buy separate toilet, sink and counter cleaners.
Use coupons and shop around for hot deals.
For big-ticket items like vacuums and carpet shampooers, consider buying used.
Use sanitary wipes as a cheap, easy solution for wiping surfaces between deeper cleanings.
5) Organize your cables
The rise of technology has meant the proliferation of wires and cables. Besides being a safety hazard, these unsightly cables can cause excess dust and can also make you feel more disorganized. Rain gutters bought at a hardware store can be attached to the back of a desk and the cables can be run through them, out of sight.
Additionally, you can experiment with decorative boxes purchased from bargain retailers. Cut holes in the back of these boxes and run the cables through these boxes, with the plugs coming out of the back hole. Making your cables invisible creates the illusion of a clutter-free, wireless workplace.
6) Don’t eat at your desk
Eating at our desks is a bad—if convenient—habit that many of us are guilty of. This practice can leave behind a mess of crumbs and stickiness all over your work area. By having a designated area where employees can eat, you will minimize desktop dirt while providing your team with a gathering place to relax. As a bonus, a designated eating spot is great for workplace culture and employee well-being.
7) Take turns cleaning
Remind everyone that a clean office helps create a more efficient working environment and that it is in everyone’s best interest to help out. In order to make sure that the cleaning is accomplished, you can make a challenge out of it. At the end of the week, the person or team with the cleanest work area gets free bagels or another breakfast treat on Monday morning.
Having a clean workspace while trying to maintain a reasonable budget is easier than it seems. If you follow the above tips you will be able to save your hard-earned money and still keep a clean office.
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