Are You Ready to Work from Home?
There are thousands of people out there searching for opportunities to work from home, but being prepared is just as important as finding the perfect WAH opportunity. Knowing what to expect and getting yourself set up is a crucial part of any work-at-home journey, so let’s look at some of the basic things you should have in place to make it easier to find employment or freelance work online.
The Home Office
This is something that a lot of people already have, while others simply use a laptop and work at the dining room table. Having a home office is going to be important if you end up working shifts, because you’ll need to be comfortable. Working shifts can sometimes mean sitting down for hours on end, so you’ll need a comfortable chair, a good keyword and a desk that is the right height.
The room you choose as your home office should also be quiet, especially if you plan to do phone or customer service work. Most CS companies will require a very quiet work environment, and that means no traffic noise, no barking dogs, and no crying children. This can be a problem for moms wanting to work from home, but there are other options such as text chat customer service jobs or freelance writing.
An Internet Connection
This is really the backbone of any home office, because without it you’d be absolutely stranded. This is also why it’s so important that the Internet connection you choose is reliable and fast. Most online employers have minimum requirements when it comes to connection speed and stability, and many prefer that employees use DSL or broadband instead of satellite or wireless connections.
The type of Internet package you choose is also important, and even though it’s a less obvious consideration, it’s nonetheless something you won’t be able to ignore for long. Making sure that you have unlimited data available, or an uncapped connection, is going to work in your favor. Many pay-per-task opportunities do not pay enough to use mobile data packages and the like. You’ll most likely end up spending more on data packages than you end up earning writing the occasional article or performing a task for pay. Data packages also tend to be far more expensive, so if you want to work from home, make the investment and get high-speed uncapped broadband.
This is another must-have, and most companies will not be concerned with the type of computer you use, unless you apply for customer service positions. If you’re on an hourly rate and have to work shifts, the company may require that your computer meets certain hardware and software requirements. If you’re lucky, you may find employment with a company that provides the hardware, but most do not. Usually a desktop or laptop computer and a decent monitor is more than enough to get you started. There’s always option to upgrade once your WAH endeavors are earning you a regular income.
Experience and Skills
Some online positions may require special skills or experience such as a minimum typing speed or customer service experience. Before you take the plunge to attempt working from home, consider your skills, abilities, and experience. If you have experience in data entry, typing, writing, customer service, graphic design or any other related skills, you may be a valuable WAH employee.
This is another crucial part of getting prepared to work from home. Doing this is not easy, and you may end up working longer hours or working harder than you would in a 9-5 job. Deciding just how much time you’re willing to commit is important and once you set those goals, you’ll have to stick to them to be successful.
Finding online employment is also not instant, and you may find yourself applying for a number of positions before you get hired. The key is to not give up and keep trying until something comes through for you. Setting up a schedule and daily goals has been helpful for me, and this may be a good way to ensure that you stick to your goals for the day and do what needs to get done. Working from home is not as easy as some would have you believe, but the rewards are well worth it if you’re determined, prepared and dedicated.