Today there is a growing need for both parents to work. Thankfully there is also a growing option to work at home in a job that can provide a great amount of flexibility. These jobs are with what are known as “virtual call centers.” Therein agents are hired to provide customer service to inbound callers. This service is provided via the agent’s phone and computer, which is networked within the company.
This type of job is especially great for anybody who needs a great amount of flexibility in his or her life. As an independent contractor you have the freedom to schedule your own hours. An added benefit here is that you are not simply “permitted” to work from home; you are “expected” to do so. As such, many mothers, disabled persons and primary care caregivers find these jobs work especially well for them since they are able to work their job around their other responsibilities. For instance, many mothers work for a few hours while their children are in school or sleeping.
Today there are approximately 100,000 people working at home in the U.S. alone. By 2010 this number is expected to triple in number to 300,000. This is because many large companies are starting to recognize just how much money they can truly save when they hire people to work from home. At the moment there are about 1,000 businesses in the U.S. that hire home based employees. Besides the financial savings, these companies are also benefiting from a lower turnover rate coupled with a higher productivity rate, all without the costly overhead.
Of course you are going to need a computer with high-speed Internet service and a landline telephone if you want to work from home. You will also require a quiet work place. Once you have these things you can apply online for a job. From there it is only a matter of passing a phone interview and some online tests for typing, writing, language and computer skills. Some companies do also require you to pass drug and background screenings too.
In these positions you are going to need to be a self-starter and an entrepreneur. You will not have someone looking over your shoulder when you work from home, so you will have to stay focused. If you cannot do this, because you strive on teamwork, then this job is not for you.
Of course, as with any job, there are some drawbacks. These include:
1. Loneliness and isolation: If you are a team player who does not like to work independently then this is not the job for you.
2. Time: Most companies will want you to commit to working at least 15 to 20 hours per week.
3. Money: You will earn $8 to $15 per hour based upon call volume. Some companies will also offer bonuses. There are also companies that only pay for the time that you are actually talking on the phone. So, before you commit to a job, make sure that you know how you are going to be paid.
4. Training: This is often unpaid. It will help you have a thorough knowledge of the company and its products though. Some companies consider training to be an investment by you and so you are not paid. The employees see this as a way to ensure that you are truly motivated to make money working for them.
Ultimately, the decision to work from home is a very personal one. If you feel that you have what it takes, then go for it. If not, then do not feel bad, simply know that you are one of the many people that is needed to work outside of the home to keep the world running.