Wanna work from home? These IT jobs are your best bets
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Pros and cons of telecommuting
Having remote employees saves operational costs, such as paying for facilities, maintenance and even things like air conditioning. There are additional advantages for companies, especially in regards to attrition, which is likely to decrease when employees are allowed to work remotely. This saves valuable hiring costs and let's companies retain the best talent.
When employees work from home, they have a better work-life balance, can significantly reduce commuting time and, best of all, can spend maximum time with their families.
Not all is pretty with moving jobs out of offices though. Teamwork and collaboration takes the biggest hit, even if a company has state-of-the-art conferencing infrastructure. For jobs that require the synergy of working closely with others, telecommuting is not an option. Most famously, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has asked employees to return to the office. For Yahoo, a company which has been steadily losing steam in recent years, this move is likely to show some positive results. I agree with the decision, although the choice of telecommuting varies from one company to the next.
What telecommuting jobs exist in IT?
With advancements in technology, virtually every job can be carried out from the comfort of your home, save for jobs like manufacturing where a physical presence is required. In the IT world, the sky is the limit. For instance, it's estimated that as many as 90 percent of Cisco employees are on a telecommute arrangement, the benchmark being at least 20 percent of the employee's time being spent at home for official work.
What are the types of jobs you're most likely to get to work from home for?
Software and web programming
With high demand for programming skills, attrition of programmers is at an all-time high. In order to compete to keep developers, many companies offer telecommuting as an option. A number of programmers also choose to go the freelance way to take on the projects of their choice and to dictate their work schedules. If you are a programmer who has a proven track record of success, chances are, you will do far better freelancing over working under a single payroll.
With every household owning multiple tech devices such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones, the demand for support is rising steadily. But providing support can be costly for companies.
To offset this, product and service companies are setting up support using the telecommute model. Technology has allowed companies to set up virtual centralized support and call centers. Although support specialists sit at home and connect to the office network, the customer will perceive that the support desk is all under one roof. The calls landing in the interactive voice response (IVR) are electronically routed to employees while the chat and email support are carried out over VPN. The idea is to bring employees located in various geographies under a single umbrella. This move can reduce overhead for the employer.
Consultancy takes place in a number of sub-fields within IT such as data management, IT infrastructure management, service management, project management and other specialized fields. People who are in the consulting field typically have a minimum of 10 years of experience, and are not dependent on their IT infrastructure or tool sets but rather the knowledge and maturity they've gained over the years.
Consulting work is one of the best candidates for a telecommuting job if you have the right experience. Since consulting costs so much, most companies prefer to use freelance consultants on an as-needed basis. It gives them the flexibility to reject projects at will, and not worry about putting the consultants on payroll. If you are a consultant, you will have an avenue to spread your wings across multiple organizations and projects, and perhaps earn more by working out of your home.
The pre-sales activity ties into the consulting realm. You can leverage your experience to come up with numbers for contract proposals, demonstrate products or services and create models, among other activities.
How to find a job
A number of online job portals provide filters for job seekers to find telecommuting gigs. Some of the popular ones are Flex Jobs, Simply Hired, LinkUp, and Freelancer.
LinkUp is a jobsite that searches on company websites only, which makes it a great source for avoiding scammers. Freelancer is a popular portal for connecting freelancers with employers. I have personally used it and the contacts and connections I have made is worthy of the time and money I have spent on it. If you are a freelancer, I highly recommend that you use it.
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