5 Tools Every Work-at-Home Professional Needs
Whether you are commuting to the office a couple times a week, or a full time remote worker, there are some must-have tools that every telecommuter should have. Check these off your list to ensure a smooth experience working from home.
1. Fast Internet
Your internet connection is the most important thing you can invest in if you’re working from home. You might be able to squeeze by on the bottom-of-the-barrel plan your provider offers, but you won’t like it. Consider upgrading your internet, and let your provider know you plan on shopping around to find the best connection at 30 Mbps or better available in your area. Find out what their best offer is, then Google other providers and see what they can give you. They’ll try and bundle you for a better rate; don’t go for it and insist on the best rate for internet alone.
Having a dedicated workspace is crucial. You will never be able to stay invested if you’re constantly reminded that you’re home. There will always be something on TV, some chore to finish, some game to play, some friend or family member that needs attention. Make yourself a dedicated office, cubicle, or even corner so you can stay focused on your work. If you don’t have enough space for a dedicated office, buy a partition to put up during work hours.
3. Excellent Online Presence
Many people working from home are independent contractors – meaning they don’t have a full time job but work on a project-to-project basis with one or more companies. Managing your online presence should be considered part of your daily 9-5. Keep your LinkedIn profile up to date and polished. Post interesting bits about your work to Twitter and Facebook. Keep a separate blog about the type of work you do and offer advice and how-to articles like this one. Doing these things will increase your network and help ensure you’re always employed.
4. Reliable Computer
Having a reliable computer is easily the next most important thing. This shouldn’t be your family communal PC, but rather at least one dedicated to work computer that you don’t load games or other time-wasters on. Ideally having a desktop and a laptop works the best, allowing you to work at home with a powerful desktop and on the go with a nice laptop. Having two also prevents you from missing work if one or the other has any issues. This doesn’t have to be expensive; most companies offer computer deals a few times a year, so you can pick up a new laptop on the cheap.
5. Comfortable Headphones
Consider investing in some comfortable headphones. Headphones help to isolate you mentally from your surroundings, helping you to stay focused on your work. Also, good headphones just sound better, and if you can listen to some good background music, you’ll appreciate quality. Noise-cancelling headphones are expensive, but worth it if you will be working from home, traveling, or working in public for longer than a month.
About the Author:
Patricia Shuler is a Mobile Moo staff writer from Oakland, California. She’s an admitted tech-junkie who’s quick to share her honest opinion on all things consumer electronic—including up-to-date news, user reviews, and “no holds barred” opinions on a variety of social media, tech, computer, and mobile accessories topics.
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