April 18, 2020 Rodney Cowled

Smart Office Tech: Working from Home but Smarter

So you’re working from home?

This is likely new for you. It was for me. I’d worked from home before, but…

Prior to COVID-19 lockdowns, it was the odd day here and there. Not enough to bother with setting up a home office. Now? Well, it’s full time…& it’s not just me, it’s my wife too.

While it’s taken some adjustment, setting up a home office has been fun. And as you’d expect, I’ve started filling my home office with smart office tech.

Smart Office Tech: When You’re WFH.

Here’s the smart office tech that I’ve added to my home office. It’s in no particular order, with the exception of the last item. It’s the one that pulls the rest together into a smart office.

1. Smart Standing Desk

The first piece of smart office tech to enter my office was a smart standing desk. Do you really need a smart standing desk? Of course, you don’t. But if I’ve got the option, I’m going to take it.

Smart Office Tech Desk

So what exactly makes a desk a smart desk? That’s a good question, in my case it’s the app-controlled electric motor which controls my sit/stand desk.

The electric motor makes it effortless to switch between sitting & standing. Far easier than a hand crank. The app adds several smart features, some more useful than others.

The Smart Desk App

  • Control the height of the desk (it works, but it’s faster to use the physical button)
  • To set default heights. Very useful to save your (& others) preferred sit & stand heights.
  • Track your sit & stand time plus set goals to beat each day.

We built our own Custom Smart Standing Desk in 4 Steps. (Minimal DIY Skills Required)

2. Smart Lighting

Lighting, I’m addicted to it. I think it can make or break the look & feel of a room. In an office, it is also important that it’s highly functional.

Bright cool white lights are best for offices & study spaces. A home office for adults or kids needs to be well lit.

Light Bulbs Smart office tech
Photo by Daniel Korpai

Grab some cool white smart bulbs (or colour-temperature changing smart bulbs) and a smart speaker, then start your day by saying “Alexa, it’s business time”.

Full post on smart lighting.

3. Smart Audio, (Smart Dancing?)

A clear benefit of working from home? You can play your music out loud & dance without fear of judgement*

*(well there may be some from your family/household).

In my regular office, when I’m trying to concentrate, I wear headphones & play my music. It gets me “in the zone” & discourages distracting chit chat (kinda craving this while in lockdown).

Add a smart speaker or two to your smart home tech & play your favourite jams at full volume.

If you’re feeling crafty set up a routine or seven on your smart speaker.
Play your favourite pump-up song to start your morning OR sound out lunchtime, when it’s time to take a break or eat some snaaaaks.

More on smart home audio here.

4. Smart Fan/Smart Air Conditioning

If you work in an office with others, you’re likely familiar with the regular complaints regarding the office’s current temps. Karen from Finance is far too cold. Steve from Marketing is too hot. The building manager wants to end them both.

Well, this is YOUR home office so you’re now the Lord Commander of the thermostat.

Make it smart with the addition of a smart air conditioner controller or a smart plug for a fan.

5. Smart Diffuser (Make your smart office smell goooood)

If you’ve made it this far into the smart office tech list, you clearly are going over the top for your home office…I’m here for it.

In perhaps an excessive move we’ve added a smart aroma diffuser to our home office. Particularly handy if you’ve got a co-worker (read: child or pet who needs a bath) who’s a bit on the nose.

Want to make the air smell sweeter without getting up from your desk? See the next item.

6. A Smart Voice Assistant

AND now…the most important piece of smart office tech: A smart voice assistant.

Smart office tech Voice assistant

Take your pick from the Amazon Echo, Google Home or Apple Homepod. Each has its own benefits.

Just make sure the one you pick is compatible with your other smart office tech. You can tell by checking the packaging/websites of your other smart office tech. They will say something like “Works with Alexa” or “Supports Apple HomeKit”.

Once you’ve got all of your smart office tech set up & connected to your voice assistant, you’ll be able to control your office with your voice & predefined routines.

Smart Office Tech Ideas:

  • Start & End your day routines:
    • Have your voice assistant turn everything on & off with one command.
  • Make it hotter/cooler
    • With a predefined routine, you could turn on a fan or a heater.
  • Video Meeting Routine
    • Brighten the lights & stop the music.


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Find much much more on smart home tech at the blog & if you’ve got any questions on smart home tech, let me know on social media.