The digital information society has created a working environment that serves decentralized “construction sites” in real-time. The speed and volume of the communicative exchange allow work content to be processed regardless of location. Administrative activities, in particular, are becoming more flexible locally. In addition to the transformation of the existing jobs, virtual digital business models have emerged.
The technically possible location independence does not only lead to globalized activities. It also leads to completion options independent of fixed locations. The growing number of startups in e-commerce has created many new job profiles, such as online marketing managers. With the convergence of the analog and digital business world, there are increasing opportunities for employers and employees to do their work from home or have it done. The employment models range from part-time outsourcing to complete exemption from compulsory attendance.
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Working From Home Is Becoming Increasingly Common.
If you look around in the modern labor and job market, you will come across many models offered in a way specific to the industry. Internationally active companies cushion time differences and business hours. Young e-commerce startups can expand their business activities with limited office space investment. All industries can appeal to workers who would otherwise not be available to the labor market. The creative possibilities also lead to increased outsourced employees in long-established and conservatively managed companies. With your home office, you not only provide independence in terms of time and space. Depending on the contract, you vary your workload according to seasonal developments.
More Freedom With Greater Responsibility
An unavoidable consequence of the outsourced work arises from a change in the weighting of the work content. The tasks and goals must be defined and evaluated in a more result-oriented manner. As you work from home, you take greater responsibility for achieving these goals. Failing technical equipment or other external influencing factors are not “absorbed.” Only the result in the given time window counts. Viewed from the opposite perspective, this form of work enables you to create paid freedom through effective work. This would quickly be perceived as “lazing around” in a conventional company or office.” They are expressions of your accomplishments and abilities.
Characteristics Develop Into Advantages or Disadvantages.
Right away, working from home sounds more tempting than daunting. Depending on the job and industry, a stable internet connection and a computer are often sufficient to set up and run your home office. This form of work, also known as telework and remote work or e-work, has many advantages for you. However, it would help to consider specific factors that can quickly trigger adverse effects. The following five main advantages and possible disadvantages apply to a home office.
- Flexibility: Working from home gives you the greatest flexibility imaginable in connection with work for you as an employee. Childcare, lonely pets, and unpunctual delivery people or meter readers no longer require organizational miracles from you. You design your working environment according to your taste and look out of the window at work or sit in a work chair. You determine work breaks according to your taste.
- Saving time and money: The daily way to the conventional workplace generates costs and loss of time. Even with shorter distances, repeating at least ten times a week saves money and time. You save on travel and fuel costs in the home office and are “off work” as soon as you finish your work. Bad weather and traffic-related delays are no longer an issue.
- Concentration: In many companies and offices, open-plan offices accommodate the workplaces. Noises, noise levels, and room air conditions disturb people’s concentration. When you work at home, you design your way of working and your environment consistently according to your personal needs.
- Time management: Apart from the no longer required arrival and departure times, the timing of your work content is solely your responsibility. How you implement the targets in detail is up to you. Typical creative freedoms are typical of lots of short breaks, a few longer breaks from work, and the completion of difficult and unloved tasks at the beginning or end of your working day.
- Self-discipline and motivation: If you work from home, you can individually consider personal habits and your character imprints in your working hours. In times of high productivity, you “work away” the largest workload. Your performance doesn’t matter, and no one cares if you’re doing quarterly closing in your pajamas.
- Separation of work and leisure: Theoretically, a separation can be created, for example, by a lockable study. In practice, however, it has been shown that private calls and visits and contacts made by other household members mix with the actual working hours. In the worst case, you may have the effect of doing both, but nothing right.
- Disturbances from the private sphere: The advantage of the higher ability to concentrate in the self-designed environment can be lost due to the private life situation. The finished laundry, the whistling kettle, and a family member’s question are disturbing and can only be prevented with rigid and undesirable means.
- No social working life & communicative exchange: Working individually and alone lacks many social components that can be very important for working people. At home, you forgo the chat in the tea kitchen. A question from a colleague can turn into an extensive e-mail exchange with great potential for misunderstandings from just a few exchanged words. There is no mutual personal motivation and the notion of solidarity among “fellow sufferers” decreases.
- The sole responsibility for technical matters: Even if your employer provides sufficient and reliable equipment, you assume the unavoidable responsibility in your home office. An in-house call to the administrator does not resolve power and system failures.
- Self-discipline and motivation: You should have a basic disposition to exercise self-discipline when working alone. At first, nobody tells you what to do, when, and how. However, this supposed freedom harbors the pitfall of regularly missing the actual goals. You should be able to design and follow a time corset. To motivate yourself, you can develop rituals.
Requirements And Contract Design
In addition to considering whether you are the type to work from home, your employment relationship must be clearly defined organizationally and legally. Financial or material expenses and equipment should be planned in consultation with the supervisor. Time and target specifications are an important basis. However, they should be formulated in an adaptable and changeable manner. Liability and insurance for damage to company property or non-compliance with work specifications must be contractually fixed.
Plan Secure Communication Channels
Even if you work from home, communication with colleagues, customers, and superiors must function smoothly and reliably. The formulation of the reporting obligation from the business world is helpful. The reporting and documentation system should be carried out in as much detail as possible in the contract. Decentralized work situations always risk destroying valuable work performance due to transmission errors. At least two mutually independent communication levels are recommended to be on the safe side. Even if your employer does not require you to be present, you should consider voluntary, informal meetings at reasonable intervals.
Individual Means To The Desired End
Without a doubt, your home office offers you the greatest possible freedom in organizing your work. For this freedom, you have to take on more personal responsibility. To act successfully and according to plan, you have to assess your work efficiency, optimize your time management and develop sufficient self-motivation again and again. Creative freedom has the hidden advantage of using any means that helps you with self-organization. It doesn’t matter whether you appreciate classical music in the background, want to work in business clothes or tracksuits, or use lots of chocolates as a reward for the stages you have set yourself. As a central answer to whether working from home is suitable for you, you should give room to your employer’s wishes. It expects defined results from you at specified points in time. How you got there is irrelevant. Find out how much time you spend completing which tasks and what gives you strength and motivation.
Also Read: Steps To A Secure Home Office