Spring forward into a cleaner office and you could boost your productivity and performance at work. Since less clutter means less chaos, a tidy workspace can help improve your focus and provide a better picture of you and your work habits.
Whether your cubicle needs a complete makeover or just some minor sprucing up, here is an office spring cleaning checklist to help get you started.
Organize the paper
Your desk surface is prime real estate and its organization, or lack thereof, can have an affect on your overall efficiency. If the paper piles are starting to take over, then this is a good place to start the de-cluttering process. If you can’t store current projects digitally, create and label folders for them. Put them in a convenient place well within reach. File anything that is outdated in a filing cabinet or in honor of Earth Day, recycle it. Use desk organizers as temporary storage for papers, mail, and any other communication coming into your office. Set up a maintenance system dedicating an hour a week to sort through accumulated paper. This will save you time in the long run and also help you maintain a cleaner desk.
Clean your computer – inside and out
Next to your cell phone, your computer is probably the dirtiest thing in your cubicle. If you’re like most people that eat and drink at their desks, your keyboard and mouse may be a health hazard. Leftover lunch crumbs and dirty hands can easily deposit nasty bacteria on your keyboard and even attract rodents. So giving your computer a top to bottom scrub is good for your work and your health in the workplace too. Wipes specifically designed for monitors remove germs and fingerprints, and compression air can remove debris from in between keys.
After cleaning the hardware, it’s time to clean up the internal elements. Start by organizing your desktop. Create folders and sort items that you are not regularly using. Delete any unnecessary files or back them up to cloud storage or an external hard drive.
Once you have organized your desktop, it’s a good idea to make sure you have updated your software. Although some things may update automatically, virus protection and operating systems will have to be done manually. This process will vary depending on the type of computer and software you use. You can always check with your IT department to help you with this process.
Dump your drawers
The best way to clean out desk drawers is to start from scratch. Emptying everything, sorting through it, and putting back only the essentials is an office spring cleaning tip that trumps all others. Ditch the old salt packets, Band-Aids, and plastic silverware. Use a drawer organizer for necessities such as pens, tape, paper clips and staples. Keeping like items together will help you locate supplies more quickly.
Add some extras
Ideally, your office space should project a professional, efficient atmosphere. Adding some color with green plants and personal photos can make it more cheerful without sacrificing proficiency. Keep it to a minimum though. You don’t want a garden or a cascade of frames cluttering up the space you worked hard to reorganize.
If you’re struggling with disorganization, don’t wait for a spring cleaning office memo to motivate you. Investing time into creating an atmosphere that makes you happier and more efficient is well worth the effort.