Telecommuting as Profession

By: pmegan
Wouldn't you love to work from home? Telecommuting may be the answer for you. The number of contract telecommuters has grown steadily each year. In 2001 there were 9.2 million. In 2004 the number had shot up to 16.5 million.

Telecommuting is not just for senior level managers and staff. Increasingly, people with lower end job titles and lower end wages are breaking into telecommuting opportunities.

For example, call center work leads this telecommuting segment. Currently, there are 100,000 at-home operators. Other workers are increasingly operating in home settings: transcribers, medical coders, proofreaders, administrative assistants, and data entry specialists.

The market for telework contractors is becoming very competitive--almost more than on-site opportunities. In fact, the groundswell of work-at-home activity has broadened the definition of telecommuting. Many are looking to become sole proprietors, consultants or contractors.

Take the case of Office Depot. The company closed 10 of its 12 call centers and switched to home-based employees. In addition to savings, the company reports that it is getting a consistently higher-quality workforce.

In another instance, Harris Methodist Fort Worth Hospital offers medical transcriptionists and other employees the chance to work at home. The hospital provides a $1500 computer and lets the employee establish a home office, freeing up hospital space for patient care.

"What we see is their productivity increases, because they don't have the distractions found in an office setting," reports the hospital's director of health information services.

Telecommuting opportunities like these are becoming more and more available as the lines continue to blur between highly paid executives and hourly wage earners.

Is this right for you? First you need to decide whether you function well alone and at home without the social interaction of the office. If you decide telecommuting could be for you, take a look around your existing organization for opportunities where you could fit in.

One recent customer told me she created a job for herself by showing the cost savings the company would realize by changing her job to a work-at-home situation. It's clear that there is something of a telecommuting revolution afoot and management is predisposed like never before to entertaining at-home jobs.

If this makes sense to you, then the good news is there's an exciting alternative job search program that can show you how to explore telecommuting opportunities. You'll discover how to line up an at-home job in a matter of days, even if you want to leave your current job.

This could be an exciting time to climb aboard the non-traditional career advancement train before it leaves the station. Check it out!
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