Why You Are Using Your Monitors Incorrectly

Many of our clients have two or more monitors on each of their employee’s desks.  If you haven’t already given each employee at least two monitors, stop reading this and immediately make plans to do so.  It truly is one of the best investments you can make for employee productivity and satisfaction and is a textbook example of very clear ROI that pays back in short order.  However, even those of you that have deployed two monitors may be using them incorrectly, and today I am going to show you why.

Most of the monitors deployed in the last 5 years are widescreen varieties, and most of us have them installed in the standard format with two monitors on each desk side by side.  However, almost all content on the web and also applications that we use aren’t built for widescreen monitors – they are built for regular old 4:3 monitors. 

So let’s flip this – literally – we will flip one or more of the monitors vertically.  Let’s look at the pictures below for why this works. 


Look at the image of the CNN website.  See all the unused blank space to either side of the webpage?  See how you can also view only one article vertically?


Now look at the exact same site on a monitor set up vertically.  See how there is no wasted space on the sides?  See how much more data can be viewed vertically?

I, personally, made the switch to using one of my two monitors vertically about a year ago, and I’ll never go back.  It is especially beneficial when working on long documents such as legal contracts or doing web research that is common in the technology world as it allows me to see much more information without the need to constantly scroll.  I do, however, keep one of my monitors in a horizontal orientation for when I need the widescreen function, such as working on a large spreadsheet.  I plan to add a third monitor soon so I can have two horizontal and one vertical monitors.

If you would like to give this a try, it may be as simple as moving your monitor.  Depending on the brand, most video cards will sense that you made the change and automatically adjust.  If you need help figuring out what it will take to try this out, don’t hesitate to give us a call.

Photos above are courtesy of The Daily Dot.

 written by: Drew Embury - 10/6/2015