Working from home isn't just a passing fad; it's a growing trend that gets stronger each year. Unfortunately, many people only have a vague notion of "working at home"; they've been flooded with "get rich quick" and "be your own boss!" ads and just don't know where to start.
There's a big difference between telecommuting - that is, working at home for an employer - and running your own home based business. Which one is right for you?
WORKING AT HOME FOR AN EMPLOYER ---------------------------------
+ You get paid a steady, guaranteed income for as long as you are employed with company and do your job.
+ Many employers offer health care benefits. This helps to cover both you and your family's health care needs.
+ If an employer chooses to hire you, training you is part of your job. You're paid to learn necessary skills.
+ You have a specific set of tasks and responsibilities. You know what's expected of you.
+ Most employees only have to work a certain number of hours per week. If you work more, you are generally paid overtime wages.
- Job stability depends on your employer. Layoffs are not at all uncommon.
- Competition is extremely fierce. Although you *can* find work-at-home jobs online, most of them are offered to current employees with proven track records. - You must answer to a boss or supervisor. They tell you what to do, when to do it, and often how to do it too. You may not actually have flexibility that's assumed when you work at home -- you may still have to work 'regular' hours and be available to your coworkers and boss.
- Your income is decided for you by your employer. You are paid a certain amount to do your job, and any raises you earn are also decided by your employer.
- Employers can be very choosy; there are loads of people who want to work from home. Thus some may offer less than competitive wages, or fewer or no benefits at all.