What You Need to Get Your Office Ready for 2014

A new year is almost upon us, so businesses everywhere are making resolutions and doubling down on improving their productivity throughout 2014 and beyond. If you’re looking for some inspiration, here are some places to get started.

Update Your Hardware (Or Software)

No matter which operating system you favor in your office, 2014 is the perfect opportunity to see what updates you might have missed over the last year or two. 2013 saw the release of Windows 8.1, which provides a new ways to stay productive. Windows 8 introduced a desktop environment that just begs to be experienced on a touch screen, so unless you have a strong aversion to fingerprints, it might be time to think about new monitors as well.

Buying a new computer for everybody in the office might be a bit out of reach for your budget. If that’s the case, simply upgrading your operating system might be enough. This year, Apple released its new, 100% free version of OS X, named Mavericks. If your office has Mac users, upgrading is a no-brainer.

Get Organized

Nobody likes working in a cluttered environment. We all spend a sizable percentage of our waking lives at work; as a result, it’s probably time we started thinking about it as our home away from home.

With 2014 around the corner, it’s the perfect time to engage everybody in getting the office organized. They might feel at first like they’re being punished, but there are plenty of ways to make it fun: challenge your employees to think of new ways to organize the office – and then keep it that way.

This could include updating your filing system or even simply rearranging the common areas of the office for greater efficiency.

Resolve to Improve Your Communications

One of the areas of our professional lives most frequently cited as an opportunity for improvement is communication. If one of your resolutions this year is to improve the way you communicate with employees or customers, then upgrading to a cloud phone system might be one of the most important investments you make in 2014.

Technology isn’t always the #1 go-to solution, but office telephone systems powered by VoIP are one situation where the technology can seamlessly blend into the background, rather than becoming one more hurdle or learning curve.

Come Up With Some Goals

We don’t mean to suggest that the average business flies by the seat of their pants, going through the motions every day without some semblance of a plan in place, but a new year is a good time to start thinking differently about the goals you set for your business.

Just as every business needs a business model, so too should every professional in the office have a plan to help guide their progress. What that means is that everybody in the office should enjoy a degree of transparency where the company’s business plan is concerned. Nothing is more harmful to productivity than when employees don’t have a full understanding of their place in things.

How do their personal goals mesh with the company’s goals? What is their place in things? In 2014, resolve to make your employees feel more empowered to not only make decisions that govern and improve their own lives, but improve the workplace as a whole.

Mike Simmons is a native and current resident of South Jersey.  Mike is a web enthusiast with a knack for staying current in a world of constant change.  When Mike isn’t reading the latest technology news, he’s sobbing about Breaking Bad or cheering on his beloved Liverpool FC.