Working from home

working from home

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many organizations to institute work-from-home (WFH) policies to keep their employees safe. However, for some people, this is their first time working remotely. If you're one of those people, this guide is for you!

Working from home can be both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, you can design your workspace and create a schedule that works for you. On the other hand, you may find yourself feeling isolated and lonely.

This guide will discuss the pros and cons of working from home and give tips on making the most of it. We'll also share some ideas on how to stay productive and avoid burnout.

What is work from home (WFH)?

WFH stands for "work from home." It's a flexible working arrangement that allows employees to, you guessed it, work from home. This acronym is used for communicating remotely through messaging apps (e.g., Slack, instant messaging, texts). Many companies have embraced WFH to promote work/life balance and attract and retain talent.

WFH can take many different forms. Some companies allow their employees to WFH full-time, while others allow it more flexibly, such as a few days per week or as needed. Some companies also have remote work policies that enable employees to work from anywhere in the world, not just from home.

How to successfully work from home?

Whether you work remotely by choice or due to a health situation or weather event, your setup must meet your needs, whether working remotely for a few days or full-time.

The best remote work experiences include a dedicated workspace with the right technology, including videoconferencing, pet care, and childcare arrangements. In addition, they include a schedule that allows social contact and stimulation that usually comes from being in a workplace with others. The following tips and strategies will help you succeed at work from home.

Know the ground rules: 

What hours do you work for your employer? Is there a standard work schedule, or do you have flexibility? In addition to a laptop, network access, passwords, and instructions for remote login, including two-factor authentication if necessary, your employer should ensure you have the appropriate equipment. Work out any issues that may impede your work during a trial run.

Set up a functional workspace

Your workspace should be set up so you can work comfortably and efficiently. A well-organized desk, comfortable chair, and adequate lighting are important, as are any specialized tools you need for your job. Set up your workspace before you start working remotely so you can hit the ground running.

Stay connected

When working remotely, staying connected with your employer and co-workers is important. Check-in with your boss or team leader regularly, and use video conferencing or chat tools to stay in touch with co-workers. Use these tools to ask questions, share information, and collaborate on projects.

Get the technology you Need

Depending on the type of laptop, software, and speed of your reliable internet connection, decide which technology tools you will need, such as Zoom, Slack, or Microsoft Teams. 

Minimize distractions

Using noise-canceling headphones can drown out the barking of dogs, and hedging your schedule to work with your family's schedule can help you achieve your goals.

Take breaks

To maintain your productivity, it is essential to take breaks. Get up and move around, take a walk, or grab a snack. These activities will help you stay refreshed and focused.

Manage your time

Working from home can be challenging if you have children or other family members at home. It is important to set boundaries and manage your time wisely. Let family members know your work hours and take breaks when you need to. Establish a routine and stick to it as much as possible. Working from home can be an excellent way to achieve a work-life balance.

The benefits of working from home jobs

Working from home is growing in popularity, and for a good reason. It's no secret that working from home has its benefits. But what are some things you may need to learn about working from home? Here are six things to think about before jumping to working remotely.

You'll have more time to spend with your family:

Working from home is great because it allows you to spend more time with your family, but if you don't have a family, you can still enjoy this benefit by spending more time with friends and loved ones. Working from home allows you to go on a lunch date or meet up for drinks after work without rushing out of the office and getting back in time for a meeting.

You can be more productive:

If you're working from home, there will be fewer distractions than at an office where other people are around all day. It means you'll be able to focus on your work without being distracted by someone asking questions or needing help with something that isn't part of your job's key responsibilities.

You'll probably save money on gas and parking:

Working from home is great because it's usually more cost-effective than commuting to an office daily. According to research by Glassdoor, employees who work remotely save an average of $1,600 per year on transportation expenses.

You'll be less stressed out:

According to recent studies, working from home can reduce stress levels by up to 50 percent. That's because when you work from home, you don't have to deal with traffic, road construction, or other people's schedules — just yours!

More freedom:

You get to be in charge of your schedule and decide how much time you spend on each task to avoid procrastination or burnout. Plus, no managers are breathing down your neck looking for updates about every little thing you do!

 

You'll get more sleep:

Working remotely means setting your schedule, which can be incredibly helpful for getting plenty of restful sleep every night. Sleep (and lack thereof) has been linked to poor health outcomes such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and depression — so don't underestimate this benefit.

Disadvantages of working from home

Working from home means fewer distractions than an office setting would provide; however, there are some drawbacks:

Face-to-face communication: There may be less opportunity for face-to-face communication with coworkers and supervisors, making it difficult to build relationships with them and feel included in the team effort.

Isolation: When you work from home, you can often feel isolated from the rest of the world. Make sure to take breaks throughout the day to interact with other people, even if it's just for a quick chat.

You're your boss: If you don't like how your boss treats you, nothing stops you from leaving. However, if you are self-employed and need someone to report to, this can lead to more stress and less motivation.

You don't have coworkers: You don't have coworkers around who can help keep each other accountable. In an office setting, everyone knows that they will see each other at some point during the day and will be able to help motivate each other on days when things get tough. If you work alone in your home office, it can be easy to get distracted by other tasks or give up on those days when the motivation isn't there.

It's easy to fall into a routine that leads nowhere but down (what we call "the sloth spiral"): You wake up late, check email for a while, and then start working on something for a few hours before realizing it's noon and time for lunch! After lunch comes email again, followed by another few hours of work before it's time to go home!

Where do you find remote jobs?

Business owners of all sizes and in various fields are increasingly choosing to work from home because of technological advancements and low overhead costs.

FlexJobs posts remote, hybrid, and flexible jobs found on job boards, vets them, and vets them again. It compiles its list of the 100 most remote-friendly companies every year. In addition, it compiles a top 30 list with no location restrictions. This list of 2023 included industries such as accounting, marketing, and finance, in addition to computer, IT, and education.

Remote friendly firms

Working from home was an impossible dream, but now you can do it from your place thanks to a surge in remote positions. Many work-from-home opportunities are available in your job search, whether you work for a company or start your own business.

FlexJobs reported that 58% of employees would look for a new job if they couldn't continue to work from home post-pandemic in 2021. The survey concludes with reference to the Great Resignation. In 2023, remote opportunities and flexibility are expected to be in high demand at these companies:

  • BroadPath: Outsourcing
  • SAP: Enterprise Software
  • Sykes: Customer Service
  • Dell Technologies: Technology
  • Varsity Tutors: Education

Other work-from-home jobs opportunities

The ability to work remotely is now available to many employees in large corporations, but freelancers and small business owners can also take advantage of this option. These independent contractors fill various jobs as companies increasingly become more flexible. Many work-from-home options are available, and some are growing rapidly. Many of these are entry-level jobs, while others require specialized knowledge and training. 

Virtual Assistant

A virtual assistant helps with email management, document creation, customer service, appointment scheduling, social media updates, bookkeeping, and data entry.

Translators

A remote worker transcribes and translates files and documents or transcribes and translates conversations and conference calls. It is in high demand to speak uncommon languages.

Customer service representative

Remote workers need to have excellent communication and customer service skills. This is because they manage both inbound and outbound calls, assist customers with orders, and give account information.

Data entry

Data entry is a more exciting job for job seekers. It does not require experience; you may begin at $10 per hour. Data entry involves entering information such as payroll data, catalogs, or inventory items into a computer program or spreadsheet.

Transcription

Transcription work is commonly performed by businesses that need to document meetings, workshops, conference calls, or podcasts by creating documents from audio files.

Consulting

Career coaching is a great way to share knowledge and experience in a specific field with others. For instance, you can charge a pretty penny for career advice if you are a lawyer or accountant. Consulting can help businesses become more environmentally friendly or learn how to use a new software program.

Become an expert.

In today's world, people go online to find experts who can help them with things they may be struggling with. Hiring an independent contractor rather than a large company to fix problems is more common. There are many resources to hire experts, including Catalant, which charges $15-$280 per hour. A talented community member could use that experience to help others.

 

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