“Join my team” pitches – There are plenty of real ways to be your own boss and work for yourself. Unfortunately, these opportunities are often drowned out by the “join my team” pitches common at multi-level marketing jobs (MLMs). While not necessarily a scam in all cases, many of these companies require you to buy product, which means you’ll end up spending far more money than you’ll ever earn. If there is more money to be made by recruiting others to join your team than there is than by actually selling the product, it’s probably an MLM and best to just stay away.
In addition to large tech companies like Apple and Dell, at-home jobs for technical support representatives are available from any number of large companies who sell products with any type of technological component to them. Keep in mind that technology isn’t just limited to electronics. Companies selling any type of product with working parts may need technical support representatives to help customers with problems operating the product.
Transcription doesn’t require a lot of technical skill — you’re essentially just typing up what you hear. Every now and then you may need to take a critical ear to what’s going on if it sounds garbled, and the better you’re able to do this, the better your transcriptions are. But it’s not usually too challenging, and there’s a transcript “code” you can include in your transcript in any section that’s too garbled to understand.
The roots of telecommuting are found in early 1970s technology that linked satellite offices to downtown mainframes through dumb terminals using telephone lines as a network bridge. The ongoing and exponential decreases in cost along with the increases in performance and usability of personal computers, forged the way for moving the office to the home. By the early 1980s, branch offices and home workers were able to connect to organizational mainframes using personal computers and terminal emulation. Telework is facilitated by tools such as groupware, virtual private networks, conference calling, videoconferencing, virtual call centre, Voice over IP (VOIP), and by the decreasing cost of good quality laptop computers. It can be efficient and useful for companies since it allows workers to communicate over long distances, saving significant amounts of travel time and cost. As broadband Internet connections become more commonplace, more and more workers have adequate bandwidth at home to use these tools to link their home to their corporate intranet and internal phone networks.
If the company is open to telecommuting, the employee works assigned hours but performs the job from home. Child care is also an option, and many parents see the socialization of their own children and the ability to be home and raise them as a huge benefit. There are legal and zoning requirements, local restrictions on how many children can be cared for at one time, and safety requirements that need to be considered as well. Success at freelance writing, copywriting and content writing depends largely on experience and perseverance. While the work is not always steady, it has the potential to grow from a supplemental income to a main source of income.
Community Engagement Representative (Louisiana) – Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center: This is a home-based position in the Baton Rouge/New Orleans Region. “Reporting to the Community Engagement Manager, the position involves cultivating and managing relationships with universities, corporations, and organizations who partner with Be The Match to educate their members about the National Marrow Donor Program. Key functions include public presentations, event planning, and volunteer management. Marketing and social media skills a plus. Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and a minimum of one year related experience to include customer service or sales; or equivalent combination of education and experience.”
Something else I recommend is taking the free 7-lesson mini-course on general transcription offered by Janet Shaughnessy of Transcribe Anywhere. This will help you to understand if you're a good fit for a transcription career, what you can potentially earn, and also where to get started. Janet also has free legal transcription mini-course if you're more interested in going that route.
Zeitcaster is a location-based service that delivers local event data. They frequently hire part-time data entry clerks to input time and location data, as well as categorize each event. Data Entry clerks are assigned to different types of events based on employee interest, for example: Art, Children & Family, Nature & Outdoors, etc. Pay is around $15/hour, likely dependent on location.
How to Get It: Check out K12 (K12.com) and Connections Academy (ConnectionsAcademy.com). Both organizations offer various benefits — including health insurance, retirement savings accounts and paid time off — depending on where you live. As in any job where you work with kids, there will be a background and reference check as well as interviews. You may also need to be licensed to teach in the state where the students reside.
The tech industry is well known for its flexible schedules and telecommuting opportunities, which makes sense, considering most tech companies are web-based and technology is the greatest resource when working from home. With video chats, conference calls, VPN networks, and wireless Internet, we can constantly stay connected as though we were sitting in our office, rather than at home.
How to Get It: GoFluent.com is an English training company working with 12 of the world's largest corporations. There are also jobs out there for English as a Second Language (ESL) teachers, which are more structured. Visit ISUS (iSpeakUSpeak.com), a placement and training company. While a degree in education or ESL is ideal, you are encouraged to apply if you are enthusiastic and articulate.