For any handyperson or contractor, being passionate about your work will bring you a long way but a well-organized space to operate from can be the icing on the cake. Having easy access to the tools and materials that you use on a regular basis will help build your reputation as a reputable business and keep customers coming back again and again. An organized workspace can apply similar benefits to repair enthusiasts or anyone striving to save money by keeping up with household maintenance themselves.
To achieve an organized and well-stocked workspace, choose a space dedicated to your hardware efforts as your first step. Anyone taking on a large quantity of repairs will benefit from a garage, shed or professional workspace as their base of operations. Once you’ve cleared out a space, decide what you need to optimize productivity and how to organize it as the next steps.
SWISCO, has been working on a new workspace for our experts and video crew to test and demonstrate the hardware replacements to better assist our customers. The changes that we’ve made, help us maintain a professional and efficient environment for everyone that uses it. We’re excited to share some of the most helpful additions, as well as the tried-and-true tools and setups that our experts couldn’t have lived without over their years in the hardware business.
Creating Storage Space
Start by sorting through and getting rid of any damaged or duplicate tools. You’d be surprised by the number of tools that serve nearly identical purposes. Keep only what you need and use on a regular basis to help keep track of what you have and to make it easier to find the tool you need at any moment.
Make sure you have a way of keeping track of tools if they are often borrowed or shared. It’s best to keep things simple when it comes to staying organized, especially when keeping inventory of tools as small as drill bits and Allen wrenches. A shared Excel or Google Sheets to create a comprehensive list of everything you have will help keep track of each time a friend or co-worker borrows something. Many of our customers prefer something tangible, which we understand can help many people stay organized and accountable. Keeping a printed sheet or notebook and having people sign out tools can be just as effective, if not more so.
Another important part of staying organized is making sure that everything has a place. Once you run out of shelves and wall space, many people will rely on toolboxes, which have a tendency to become cluttered and unruly, making it easy for things to go missing or get lost. Once you sort through your tools and make sure that only the most important earn their rightful place in your workshop, choose the right toolbox (or toolboxes) to help you stay organized. Many people will be able to get away with something on the small side, as long as it has enough compartments that nothing gets lost. We also prefer a versatile toolbox that makes transporting as simple as possible.
A large, stationary toolbox commonly supplied by brands like Craftsman can serve as storage, as well as an additional workspace. Also consider a larger tool chest with wheels, which makes cleaning and reorganizing your workspace a simple task.
Once you’ve chosen the best methods to organize your tools, we recommend making sure you have access to the tools commonly used for the repairs you tackle most often. Our experts insist that there are some tools that belong in any handyperson’s toolbox, as well as a separate checklist for anyone specializing in window repairs.
• Scratch awl
• Tape measure
• Needle nose pliers
• Vice grips
• Utility knife
• Drill and drill bits
• Safety glasses
Making an Easier Commute
Once your workspace is suitable for all of your repair needs, make sure that you have the right vehicle for house-call repairs. The vehicle can accommodate your crew, tools, and any materials you may need. Small Business Trends has some good advice for anyone looking for the right vehicle to support their business while still considering cost and accommodations.
Once you’ve chosen the perfect vehicle for your day-to-day operations, there are a few add-ons that will help you protect your investment and any materials you’ll be transporting.
• Make sure your vehicle is suitable for the weather in your area to prevent tools from rusting or materials from getting water damage. Truck lids or caps can help if you’re from a region prone to rainfall.
• Bed liners and moving blankets keep materials from being damaged and tossed around the truck bed.
• Side racks for ladders and other large tools.
In our experience, work trucks and vans are likely to become disorganized because things are constantly moved in and out. There are often multiple people using the vehicle, which can create similar issues that you’d see among roommates when one person refuses to do the dishes. We all know one person whose work vehicle often has lunch leftovers, paperwork and a bunch of clutter that is likely not necessary for their job. Taking a few minutes each day to declutter and keep everything organized is the best way to maintain a good workflow for everyone.
We realize that these tips and tricks are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to creating a space that suits a handyperson’s workflow. To keep the conversation going, we’d love to hear about you favorite aspects of your workspace, as well as any obstacles that you may have encountered!