There are countless studies that have addressed the concept of having dual screens in relation to things like productivity and efficiency. If you are deciding whether or not to add an additional monitor to your desk, you may be surprised to find that it can dramatically improve your work flow.
One of the major advantages to having dual screens at your workstation is an increase in productivity. Several different studies including those conducted by Jon Peddie Research, The Pfeiffer Report, and the University of Utah and NEC, found a significant increase in productivity for subjects working with dual monitors. It has also been concluded that an increase in productivity directly correlates to an increase in earnings as well. However, keep in mind that having a screen that is “too big” can alter these findings dramatically and could have unfavorable productivity results. It is all a matter of finding a setup that is comfortable for you.
If you are someone who has to switch between tabs or programs frequently while working, multiple screens can enable a smoother work flow. You will no longer need to juggle between tabs. Instead, you can see more in front of you all at once with fewer interruptions. This way, you can use multiple programs simultaneously and multi-task with minimal effort involved.
With dual screens, you can keep your email or main line of communication on one screen to stay better connected and accessible to clients. This enables you to stay focused on your work while occasionally scanning the second screen to see what messages are coming through. It is a good practice for any business to respond as quickly as possible in order to keep clients engaged, and having that screen visible makes it easier to promote this routine.
The process of setting up multiple screens at your work desk is quite simple and is compatible with most laptops. It also allows for greater flexibility for your workstation. You can easily connect or disconnect your laptop from using dual screens if necessary to move to another environment. This leaves you with the option of an extra monitor without any sort of commitment.
If video conferences are a common practice in your workplace, having a second screen to look over or reference material can be helpful. This allows for discussions to run more smoothly and efficiently. This is also true if you are making phone calls to clients as well. Any direct engagement is easier when everything is prepared in front of you, limiting the need to switch views. It is easier to stay organized and consistent when everything is visible at once.
Multiple screens allow for easy comparison of data or material. Depending on what type of work your company is involved with, it is drastically easier to compare images, designs, or data when working on dual screens. Comparing material side-by-side on two screens is much easier than comparing them in two different tabs on one screen. With the extra step of switching screens eliminated, you are less likely to lose your train of thought during these situations.
One of the biggest advantages to having dual screens is how easy the process is to set up. Even if you are not very tech-savvy, the process is not as involved as you might think. Realistically, it only involves connecting whichever adapter cord is compatible with your laptop into a new monitor. Once this is complete, you may need to adjust your settings slightly so that the display is suitable for dual screens. There is also no need to acquire any additional software for the monitor because it uses the software on your laptop.
Fortunately, the cost for dual screen setups have dropped significantly over the years. It is important to note that you are under no obligation to buy the best, most visually appealing monitor. You can find a monitor for a reasonable price that carries the same functionality, so there is no pressure to spend too much money if you are on a budget.
Sharing data between two applications is also much easier when working on multiple monitors. You can simply drag certain files or images across monitors. This is especially helpful for people working with Photoshop or other design-oriented applications. These types of tasks are often much more painful when working on one screen because there is limited room when opening tabs side-by-side.
Ultimately, it depends on the type of work you are operating that will determine whether or not you should purchase a new monitor for your workstation. There are many universal advantages in doing so, and it is something to consider if you have found it challenging to remain productive or have an unsteady workflow. If you have any extra space at your desk, it is certainly a constructive item to consider.