In 1995 only 9% of American’s worked remotely. Now, more than 20 years later, that number has climbed up to around 30%, with 46% of workers saying they worked from home at least a couple days a month. Seen from a 30,000-foot level this change has been a dramatic one, but it isn’t at all that surprising for anyone who has been in the workforce over the past 5 or 10 years. As technology has become increasingly more nimble and capable, allowing employees to work from home has just made more sense for more companies.
While most only highlight the benefits of working from home (having a flexible schedule, not having to deal with office politics) there are some drawbacks to consider as well. In our opinion, the biggest annoyance of working remotely is not having a dedicated workspace. You have to take the time and energy to create your own home desk or build out a kit that you can set up at either a co-working space or a work-friendly cafe. This list of ours is dedicated to the latter option. These are all essentials we think remote workers need on hand in order to make their day away from the office as productive as possible. Take a scroll through our list of traveling office essentials and see for yourself.
Pomodoro Timer App
One of the nice things about offices is that they’re places of work and nothing more (don’t be fooled by the ping-pong tables, folks). When you show up, you’re on the clock. When leaving, you’re (hopefully) off. Folks don’t get that when working remotely. That is why the Pomodoro Timer App is so helpful. It breaks down your work into smaller chunks of time, with breaks in-between. A great way for freelancers to keep themselves honest and remote workers to stay on task.
Remote workers are often nomadic. You’re in a cafe one day, in your apartment the other, and then at a library the next. That means you are constantly hoofing your gear around. Rather than having all of your office essentials float around your briefcase or backpack, this solution is designed to secure it in one spot. This simple panel is made up of a series of elasticated bands that can hold all of the pens, wires, cords, headphones, and external chargers you’d want to bring with you.
Field Notes 56-Week Planner
For as much as new tech can be useful in organizing your day-to-day work life, it never hurts to have pen and paper version of your notes. This 56-Week planner from Field Notes provides ample space for you to lay out your plan of attack for the day, week, and month in a simple, well-organized fashion. Unlike the popular smaller version of Field Notes, this one measures in at 7.5-inches high by 4.75-inches wide and boasts a durable spiral bound Double-O wire spine.
Bluelounge 13-Inch Kickflip Laptop Stand
Typing on a flat laptop for extended periods of time is not very comfortable. Trust us on this one. We spend a lot of time in front of a computer. One simple and easily transportable solution to this is Bluelounge’s 13-inch kickflip stand. It attaches easily to the bottom of your computer and lofts it up off of the surface of a table – making for a much more ergonomic workspace. And when you don’t feel like using it? Just flip it back down.
Lightning Nomad Key
Nothing is more frustrating than packing up your bag for the day and heading all the way out to a cafe or rented office space only to realize that you’ve forgotten something essential like your phone’s charging cord. One way to avoid making such a stupid mistake is by equipping your keychain with the Lightning Nomad Key. This simple, flexible connector can plug your phone into your laptop or outlet to charge it. Your phone is as essential as your keys – so why not keep the two close?
Everyman Grafton Pen
When it comes to writing utensils, there are two options; you can get yourself a 1,000-pack of Bic pens and re-up at the end of the month after you’ve lost or misplaced every single one, or you can get one or two nice EDC pens that you really like and actually take care of them. This one from Everyman is particularly handsome. It has an anodized aluminum body, a grooved grip, and takes Pilot G2 and Fisher Space Pen ink refills.
Anker 2000mAh Portable Charger
Work should be done when you are finished, not when your battery is empty. Ensure you stay on task and focused with Anker’s 20000mAh charger. It has the ability to charge your iPhone 7 up to 7 times, a Galaxy S6 five times, or an iPad mini twice. An essential piece of tech for throwing in your backpack before rolling out for the day.
Logitech MX Master 2S Wireless Mouse
If you, like us, are not fans of the trackpad you may want to consider getting a wireless mouse like this one from Logitec. Unlike the Apple mice, this one is designed ergonomically – making it incredibly comfortable and easy to use. As if that wasn’t enough, this mouse packs an impressive 70 days of power into a single charge.
Incase ICON Lite Pack
It used to be that the only respectable way to carry your office gear was either with a briefcase or a satchel. Now, the lines have been blurred a bit. But that doesn’t mean that you should come to work (even if in a cafe) with a ratty old JanSport. Equip yourself with the work-ready ICON Lite Pack from Incase. The bag has a padded laptop sleeve, a spacious internal compartment, and lots of slots and zippered pockets for organizing your pens, notebooks, and tech.
Your Karma Wifi Hub
WiFi access has become almost ubiquitous at this point, but you never know when you may end up stuck with a slow connection or no connection at all. The Karma hotspot allows you to connect multiple devices to a high-speed connection, making it easy to get lots of work done anywhere. And thanks to the adjustable payment plan – either pay as you go or a monthly subscription – you won’t have to break the bank whenever you use it.
Sony Premium Noise Cancelling
Even though you may work in them, cafes are not work environments. That means when someone sits down next to you and starts loudly complaining about their slob of a boyfriend or how their mother simply won’t admit she needs hearing aids – you just have to deal with it. But that doesn’t mean you have to be miserable. One of the best ways to deal with noisy cafes is by throwing on a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. This pair from Sony features Bluetooth connectivity, a high-fidelity sound, and a battery life of 20 hours.
So long as you are not going to be doing any design work or photography, the MacBook Air is a great and affordable machine for putting together presentations, typing out copy, or distracting yourself by posting dumb tweets. It has a 12-hour battery life, a crisp display, and weighs less than 3 pounds.
20 Desktop Essentials For Men
Don’t spend a whole lot of time away from your desk? Take a look at our list of the best desktop essentials for men.