20 Home Office Organization Tips for a More Productive Space

Stacy Lenz | Jul 25, 2018 Home & Garden
20 Home Office Organization Tips for a More Productive Space

Who hasn’t been here -- while dutifully grinding through a project at their desk, lost in a world of Excel and Outlook, the coffee mugs, evidence of recent snacking and scraps of to do lists start to pile up. The chaos slowly spreads from the outer corners of the desk and creeps toward the keyboard like some sort of office supply eating blob. While our first instinct is to stick a “Bless this Mess” sign up on the wall and hope that’s good enough, office organizing doesn’t have to be that much harder than sticking a Command Strip on the wall. There is a way to tame the clutter and create a cute work-friendly space and luckily have the Instagrams to prove it.

Looking at a particularly cluttered workspace may make it feel impossible to achieve #DeskGoals but organizing an office is easier than one would think. From making activity zones to dealing with that pile of unread mail, the clutter can be chipped away at in a way that would make Marie Kondo proud. It doesn’t have to be all label makers, storage bins and colored coded washy tape, but it can be. We found a myriad of ways to organize a space so a messy desk veteran can find what works for them and their pile of papers.

These office organization hacks will prove to that an organized, functional and Instagram-worthy workspace is in the not so distant future. Now a “Bless this Mess” sign, in a white frame with rose gold calligraphy, can just be gloriously ironic rather than an upfront apology. 

  • Clear that clutter 


    The best way to begin any desk organization project is to start with a clear workspace. Clean off everything and slowly add back in the essentials. 

  • Tackle the mail 


    An easy way to avoid the constant pile up of mail is by sorting it as soon as it arrives. The white stacking tray pictured would be perfect for filing mail into separate “action needed,” “file” and “shred” sections. Don’t forget to recycle any unwanted junk mail or catalogs as soon as it comes in as well! 

  • Make active zones 


    Have things regularly used at the ready and easy to access. Use a tray or raised tile to make a group of disparate things on your desk look cohesive, like pencil cups or office supplies placed together on the same tray. 

  • Avoid scraps of paper everywhere


    Keep an organized notepad with your schedule and notes to avoid little scraps of paper and sticky notes everywhere. 

  • Embrace Lucite 


    Use the clear trend to its full advantage so needed items are available for easy access and, frankly, because it looks cool.    

  • Get creative with pegboard 


    Moveable shelves on an oversized pegboard keep things organized and interesting. That way  shelving configurations can be modified to fit changing needs with shelves and even hanging baskets! 

  • Deal with the paperwork 


     There are tons of options to store must-keep paperwork that don’t make the workspace look like it's trapped in a doctor’s office from the 70’s. In addition to sleek and stylish filing cabinets, store paperwork in these discrete file boxes. 

  • Update the inspiration wall 


    We love cork boards and ribbon boards but sometimes they remind us a little too much of the ones filled with pictures of horses and Jonathan Taylor Thomas from 7th grade. These metal grids for clipping current inspo are the updated solution (but we won’t judge if we catch a little JTT on there too). 

  • Label cords


    Show us someone that doesn’t have a box of mystery cords and we’ll show you a liar! That is unless they’ve previously see this hack to label all  your with washy tape so they'll never be left wondering if they really need that cord or if it was for the digital camera that lost at Spring Break junior year. 

  • And organize them 


    We know, more cords!? But, hey, it’s a huge problem area. Cut down on cord chaos by using binder clips on the edge of the desk so all charging needs will be at the ready the second you slip into low power mode.

  • All the things! 


    Unsure if you should do pegboards, cork boards or a metal grid? You can use all three to work together for organizational and design success! 

  • Keep an analog inbox 


    An upright file organizer can help keep pending projects in check. Things like bills that need to be paid or even birthday cards that need to get to the post office can have a place to live on the desk that is both not cluttered but not quite out of sight, out of mind. 

  • Get a theme 


    If you can’t help yourself when it comes to buying cute office supplies or loading up on tchotchkes, one way to make everything look intentional is to stick with a theme or color scheme. While this desk might have more on it than our other inspiration, the tropical theme pulls all the items together.

  • Don’t forget the drawers 


    When organizing, show the hidden spaces some love too. Use silverware organizers, old shoeboxes or cute patterned boxes to divide up drawers, keeping all odds and ends organized. 

  • Build upwards 


    Small desk? Don’t be afraid to build upwards with shelving. The added storage can make up for the fact the actual desk barely holds the laptop and coffee mug. 

  • Take a shelfie 


    Let stuff breathe! Weed through books and only keep what's need! If that means there's some open spaces on the shelf so be it. The extra space allows the eye to focus on what is there. 

  • Organize like with like 


    Easy access for regularly used items is important and so is being able to find everything. Organizing "like with like" will cut down on time searching for misplaced objects.     

  • Don’t be afraid to repurpose furniture    


    This adorable mint green bench serves as extra desk space AND adorable décor. Even though it’s not serving it’s intended purpose, it’s still a staple of this office.  

  • Utilize hidden spaces 


    Printers can sometimes be a home office eye sore, but not if styled correctly. Hidden spaces can be great to store unsightly extra paper and printer cartridges, like in decorative boxes or behind cabinet doors.  

  • Fake it ‘til you make it


    Want a minimal looking office but still somehow have too much stuff? Keeping the color scheme to a basic white color palette. It can give the sleekness and open feeling of minimalism, even if there's still a bunch of stuff around.