When you’re working from home, your office desk becomes an important part of your daily life. Having an organized workspace can increase productivity and help you produce more effective work. In this article, get the 31 best desk organization ideas so you can organize your desk to perfection.
It’s a Monday morning and you’ve grabbed your coffee, updated your online calendar, and written your to-do list. You’re ready to take on the work week. You’re feeling confident about tackling the tasks ahead until you enter your office, only to find last week’s paperwork sprawled across your desk and all of your office supplies out of place.
Having a messy office not only looks unappealing but can also negatively impact your productivity and mood.
If you struggle to keep your desk clear of clutter, check out these 31 home office ideas for inspiration on how to organize your desk. These tricks will change your work from home space for the better.
It can be difficult to do your best work at home if you don't have the right equipment or setup. Creating a designated workspace at home is one of the best things you can do to succeed at remote work. When you have a designated space for your work, it’s easier for your brain to get into “work mode” in the morning—and to get out of work mode in the afternoon. That way, your entire house doesn’t become your office.
Dr. Sahar Yousef, a cognitive neuroscientist and leading expert on productivity, explains:
“If we don’t have dedicated spaces for work, like an office or a desk in a separate work-specific area, it’s hard for our brain to cognitively prepare for work and neurologically transition into that brain-state and also out of that brain-state...The biohack here is to create clean and clear work associations with certain things in your house when it’s time for work."
If you don’t have room for a full at-home office, get creative! Facing your desk out a window or creating a make-shift office space in an unused closet can be beneficial when it comes to making a distinct workspace. Keep your desk area and office organized to reduce visual clutter, increase productivity, and create clear associations between work and home life.
When you have a small office, little changes to your decor or the way you organize can make a huge impact on your clutter. Follow along to read the best small office organization ideas.
If you’re easily distracted but still want to create a cute workspace, try decorating with minimalist decor. To create this design you can use neutrals, candles, and wood tones, and keep your desk clear of too much decor. Not only is the minimalist style trendy right now but it will also leave your desk less cluttered.
If you have a desk without drawers, try hanging a closet organizer on the back of your office door or on a rolling closet rack to avoid having your office supplies all over your desk. Use a closet organizer with clear pockets or labels so everything has a place.
Creating a color-coordinated office helps make your space look more put together—thankfully, this is doable on a budget. Simply purchase inexpensive desk items and choose a few cohesive spray paint colors to decorate your office supplies.
If you want to have a trendy accent color for your extra storage space, then it’s time to get crafty with DIY storage bins. Simply glue colored fabric or wallpaper to a cardboard box for a fun desk accessory that will pop out from under your desk. Use these storage boxes for larger items that you can’t store in organizers on your desk.
Using drawers to store your office supplies is a great idea, but unfortunately, without drawer dividers, all of your useful items can suddenly become jumbled together in a disorganized mess. Add dividers to your desk drawers to declutter and ensure that every paperclip, pen, and post-it note has a place.
When you have a small office space, it might seem impossible to fit all of the work from home supplies that you need. Sometimes it’s best to think vertically—like using your wall for storing supplies and displaying decor. Here are some of our go-to ideas for making the most of unused wall space.
If you have a small home office setup, it might be best to consider building your storage areas with a pegboard. Attach bins, organizers, and shelving to your pegboard wall for easy access to all the office supplies you need.
If pegboards aren’t your style, hang floating shelves above your desk to add storage space for books, decorations, and knick-knacks. Adding shelving will help eliminate unnecessary items from your desk so you can focus on work, instead of dealing with clutter.
Instead of shoving your paper clutter into trays or junk drawers, try utilizing your loose pages as part of your office decor. Combine old cards, doodles, and colorful notes with artwork above your desk to create a fun and unique display. While this method might seem distracting to those in analytical professions, it could bring some much-needed inspiration and creativity to those in artistic fields.
Cork boards are perfect for pinning important numbers, to-do lists, and dates so you always have go-to information handy. Once you complete a reminder on your corkboard make sure to take it down and replace it with a new task for the following week—this will help keep your board from getting overly crowded.
To create a functional backdrop for your office, consider turning a portion of the wall behind your desk into a calendar. Each month, fill out the calendar with virtual team activities or important events so you never miss anything. For priority to-do lists, meetings, and work project deadlines, transition to a virtual calendar to save even more room.
Unless you organize them properly, small office supplies can get disorganized quickly and can take up a lot of room. From magnetic strips and desk organizers to stylish baskets and categorization systems, we’ve got you covered when it comes to organizing your tiny workspace items.
Magnetic knife strips don’t take up much room and are great for storing metal items such as scissors, staples, and paperclips. Add one to the side of your desk for easy access or to the inside of a drawer to keep these items concealed and organized.
DIY or purchase a pretty desk organizer to hold office knick-knacks like pens, notepads, or sticky notes. Remember to maximize vertical space so consider a desk organizer that has both vertical and horizontal trays, drawers, or shelves.
Choose a basket to display on your work from home desk or an office shelf where you can store small office supplies out of sight. You can even personalize this storage option by picking out baskets in a fun color or pattern.
Our final and most simple tip is to designate certain areas of your desk to different items to keep everything tidy. An example is having all of your decorative items in one corner of the desk, a tray of supplies in another corner, and your computer in the center.
If you can’t cut down on office supplies but want a minimalist and clean look for your workspace, there are lots of ways to conceal any additional clutter you might have.
Don’t have space to dedicate an entire room to your office? Thankfully you can still create a productive work area by attaching a fold-down desk to a wall. At the end of the workday, simply fold the desk up to free up the corner of the room and signal to your brain that it’s time to decompress. If you’re messy, this is a great way to force yourself to tidy up at the end of the day.
Printers are an office essential but they can take up a lot of space. To solve this dilemma, put your printer on a shelf with a pullout for easy access whenever you need it.
Having lots of cords is inevitable. Keep your chargers and cords organized and conceal your unused plugs by storing your wires in a cable box below or beside your desk.
It’s easy to forget to charge all of your work devices in advance. To avoid this issue, add a charging station inside your desk drawer to conceal charging cords and electronics while you’re not using them.
Your office supplies can start to feel overwhelming when you have very little desk space to work with. Luckily, we have lots of tips and tricks for creating more room for your most important work supplies.
Adding a keyboard tray under your desk is perfect for storing your laptop, mouse, and flat electronics when they’re not in use. If you’re constantly trying to find your electronics, this method will help ensure that you always put your go-to items back where they belong.
Stick a storage caddy under your desk to hold everyday office supplies and keep unnecessary items out of your small space. Bonus points if you use a simple metallic caddy and match it to similar colored metal wire bins for your desk to create a modern aesthetic.
Having good lighting is essential to creating a productive office space because no one does their best work when they’re squinting all day. Since lamps can take up a lot of valuable surface area on your desk, opt for a floor lamp.
Computer risers not only help your neck but also create more storage space for your office supplies by allowing you to tuck items underneath them. If you don’t want to purchase a riser, you can simply find a wooden box the same height and point the opening towards you for an easy keyboard storage hack.
Nothing is more distracting than when you can’t find the right paperwork, resulting in papers piling up on your desk as you continue to search. Consider these desk organization ideas to avoid a paper pileup.
Do you like to stay current with industry magazines and newsletters? No matter your interests, subscription services and catalogs can be a huge source of clutter. Thankfully, it’s easy to keep these organized by putting them in magazine holders on top of your desk.
Trays can keep your papers organized, display decorative items, or hold cups with small office items. Letting a tray hold your extra supplies will make your desk space feel less overwhelming and tidier.
We’ve discussed a lot of ways to organize the top of your desk, but why not utilize the space under your desk too? Add a small bookcase under your desk to store books and paperwork as long as it doesn’t disrupt where you sit.
Don’t fall victim to the dreaded unorganized paper piles that can accumulate if you don’t have an organization system for your paperwork. Get a desktop organizer that has slots for paperwork and trays for paper clips, staples, and pens you might need when reviewing important files.
Still looking for more desk organization ideas to tidy up your at-home office? You’re in luck—here are even more desk decluttering strategies to create the perfect office aesthetic.
27. Add chalkboard tape to your desk for easy note-taking: Get a roll of chalkboard tape so you can write down important tasks and easily erase them when you’re done.
28. Use two dressers to make a desk for extra storage space: Spray paint a piece of plywood the same color as the two dressers and lay it across the top to create a desk with built-in storage.
29. Use clear organization supplies to see what’s in your storage units: Put your papers and office supplies in clear trays, boxes, and pen holders so you always can see what’s inside without having to rustle through all of your desk items.
30. Utilize a rolling cart to bring your office supplies anywhere in your home: If your desk is in a multi-use space, such as a bedroom, then a rolling cart filled with office supplies is a great idea so you can move it in and out of your remote work space whenever you need it.
31. Mount a coat rack above your desk to hang electronics: Adding a coat rack to your office space is great for hanging cords, chargers, or headphones so they don’t take up desk surface area.
Organizing your desk is one of the best ways to improve efficiency by eliminating visual clutter and putting yourself in the best mindset to succeed throughout the week. Use the above desk organization ideas to create a peaceful work environment free from distractions.
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