This piece was written by freelancer Natasha Moore
You’ve probably dreamt of having one of those cushy work from home jobs, right? Imagine making money at a pace and style which best suits you; no more paranoia about your boss creeping over your shoulder to check whether you’re on emails or iPlayer, no more black teas because Colin’s taken all the milk, and definitely no more wedgies from the trousers you shrunk in the wash, but you still deem appropriate enough to pass off as smart casual for the work dress-code. Well this is what it could be like! Work from home jobs remove the pressures of the normal office day, and allow for greater flexibility in other areas of your life.
It’s no wonder the number of people working from home has increased by a fifth in the last ten years, to reach a record 1.5m, a 2016 report from the Trade Union Congress found. Here’s your guide to scoring one of the many work from home jobs available in the UK today, including some advice on whether or not one would suit you.
Why are work from home jobs so popular?
Work from home jobs are popular for so many reasons; one of which is – of course – technological advancement. Computers themselves have been downsized to almost the size of a postage stamp so you can now complete mundane tasks from the comfort of your king-size bed. A lot of the time work from home jobs mean you get to be self-employed too, so instead of having a wage each month, it’s all up to you to rake in the pounds obvs. The Office for National Statistics found that in the UK self-employed people increased by 103,000 to 4.80 million (15.0% of all people in work), comparing the estimates for type of employment for February to April 2017 with those for a year earlier, and with the increase in self-employed people comes a surge in popularity for work from home jobs.
Popular work from home jobs
Some of the most popular work from home jobs available right now include;
• Freelance writer
• Online assistant/tech support
• Online Tutor
• Web Developer
• SEO marketer
There are actually a huge range of work from home jobs available to you if you know where to look, but remember that some of them may mean you’re entirely self-employed which could be difficult if you’re just starting out. For example, if you want to be a freelance writer or designer, it may first help if you have a network of clients to pitch to so you know you’ve always got regular work coming in.
The best way to start out working from home may be to integrate it into your job, if you already have one. For example, why not ask your boss if you can work from home one day a week? Most companies these days have a more flexible working pattern than they did for previous generations as millennials increasingly look to take control of their schedules.
On the other hand it is possible to secure work from home jobs that pay well without first having a network or a normal job first. Searching online, you’ll find several work from home jobs available that involve nothing but a computer, an internet connection and some skills around online marketing (like online marketer, proofreader or online assistant). Specific sites to start searching are; Indeed, Upwork, People Per Hour and E4S.
Work from home jobs – would they suit you?
Before we get totally ahead of ourselves with the idea of one of these dreamy work from home jobs, allow me to remove my rose-tinted glasses and present both the pros and cons of this style of work. Because although they may bring many positives, there are a few difficulties involved with having one. But first, let’s start with the good things before I dash your hopes and dreams…
• Reduction in commuting time + travel cost
Travel to work can be a real money drainer – think of all the money you could save by not commuting five days a week!
• Greater productivity
We’ve all had that co-worker who fails to take a breath between sentences or the snack-cruncher appearing just as you desperately need some silence. A less noisy environment and fewer distractions from co-workers can be a major plus.
• Learning new skills
If you’re working as a freelancer, you’re sure to brush up on general life skills; organisation, finance, online communication etc.
• More free time in general
Work from home jobs may allow you to manage your schedule more flexibly and see friends and family more (as opposed to your colleagues)
• Control over your work attire
In other words: Pyjama time! (Kidding – kind of)
Work from home jobs are often solo endeavours; it can be very hard to motivate yourself when your don’t have someone telling you not to procrastinate.
Most work from home jobs can invoke feelings of loneliness at times, but to combat stagnation to your productivity and creativity by being the only one at home, you could take frequent breaks, go for a walk, work in a cafe or chat with the neighbour.
• Too much financial risk
There are certain perks that come with being employed in a company office job as opposed to being self-employed such as; healthcare and benefits, gym membership discount, travel discounts which can help your pay packet. Work from home jobs can often be unreliable if you don’t have a large client list to give you regular work.
• NO escape
Your home and working environment have became one when you have one of the aforementioned work from home jobs, so it can be difficult to switch off. For workaholics, there is also a danger of over-working…
Overall though, work from home jobs are a fantastic way to have real freedom when it comes to shaping your career. And with a few contacts, or a little permission from your boss, you could be tucked up in your trackies, making money from your living room in no time…
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