Post # 1
What are your thoughts on working from home? I have always worked in a hospital or clinic, but starting to look at positions where I can work from home. I’m recently married and now shave two stepchildren 100% of the time and needing more flexibility.
would love to hear your thoughts and/or experiences…
Post # 3
I work at home 50% of the time. I work for a federal agency that offers telework, so I go in either on Tues/Thurs or on M/W/F depending on the week – they altnerate. I LOVE it. I get so much done around the house, save a ton in gas money (I commute an hour) and my time is so flexible. We don’t have children yet, but when we do it will save us a ton on daycare, plus I’ll get the best of both worlds – stay at home mom & full time job.
I love my days at home, but if I was home 100% of the time I think I’d go a little stir crazy. Its nice that I still get to go to the office sometimes and interact with coworkers. I’m not really a homebody so if I’m in the house too long I get cabin fever. However my agency is considering only requiring employees to come in once a week so I might be closer to 100% soon. My FMIL works at home everyday and she loves it. I think the pros definitely outweigh the cons. The only con I can even think of is the cabin fever thing.
Post # 4
I love working from Home. I’ve been a telecommuter for 7.5 years and will be happy to never go back to a traditional office. I’m a software engineer and this whole industry is moving towards telecommuting.
But, it’s not as easy as many think. First, you need a lot of discipline. You can’t come and go as you please in most jobs; expect to keep set hours and stock to them. Employer tolerance for employees setting their own rules and hours isn’t as high as many think. At the end of the day, you’re still responsible for having your work done and on time, just as if you’d gone to an office to do it.
it is very difficult to “switch off” at the end of the day. A separate work area or proper home office is a must. Lots of people work extra hours just because it’s easy to go across the room and look at your email.
it is extremely difficult to build cohesive work groups and teams. It takes longer to get absorbed into a team. The “new guy” is treated like the new guy for a lot longer than in a traditional office. It takes a lot longer to build a reputation in the company or learn the political structure. If you’re a ladder-climber, it’s a lot harder to climb. It’s also a lot harder to learn new skills.
The IRS deductions for a lot of home office expenses have changed over the years, so it’s more $$ from your own pocket to do the job than it used to be.
and it does get lonely. It’s hard to make work friends and even when you do, they’re hundreds of miles away. No impromptu happy hours, no fun lunches. Your social circle will get very small.
it is definitely a trade-off. For me, it works: I don’t mind following the rules and being where I’m expected to be during work hours, I work better without interruptions, I don’t need a lot of training r mentoring, and I’ve got enough friends so that I don’t need work socialization. Plus DH telecommutes too. We can take short coffee breaks together. But we have very strict rules about where and when we work, so it doesn’t intrude on our personal time.
Post # 5
I just recently started working from home and it’s been an adjustment. We had to move because of a job offer FI got, and my company was good enough to let me take my position with me and let me work remotely from home. I do like that it allows me to see FI when another traditional day job might not. I work 8-4 from home, and FI’s shift is 2-10pm, so even though I am technically working, we get to spend the mornings at home together. Our wedding is in August and even though we probably won’t start TTC for at least another year, I do like that I may have the option to still work in this position but be at home with a future baby. It can get lonely, but I make sure to stay busy with hobbies and keep in touch with friends, and so far, I love that I’m lucky enough to work from home 🙂
Post # 6
Hubs started working nights last year, and my boss let me tweak my schedule so we weren’t just seeing eachother on weekends. I now work 8.5 hrs Monday-Thursday and get to work from home on Fridays for 6 hours.
I love it because half of my job is writing for publication and you really need quiet time to research, read, and re-read your drafts. You don’t get uninterrupted time at the office with emails, phone calls, and drop-in visitors.
Post # 7
My husband gets to work from home 4 days a week, and it’s fabulous. For both of us. When I come home, dinner is already cooking! For him, he doesn’t have to travel more than a hour each way to work. When he’s feeling sick, he can work in his PJs. Errands can be run on his lunch break, my daughter gets to school and back w/o daycare. It’s amazing. I wish I could also do it,.
Post # 9
I’m currently on my 2nd work at home job. I found myself nodding in agreement with most of what both @adoc86: and @fishbone: wrote.
My first WAH job was part time at home. It could have been fulltime, but I liked going to the office a couple of days a week. I chose my own days at the office. During the 5 years that I worked like that, I found that on the days I worked from home I generally worked at least 10 hours a day and rarely took lunch. I also only took 5 sick days in those 5 years, and that was only because I was so sick that I couldn’t get out of bed. Other than that, it was assumed by management that you could work while sick because you were home doing nothing. After 5 years of remote work at home, I looked forward to going back to an office.
I’m now on my second WAH job, full time at home for the last 15 months. This job is easier to switch off at the end of the day, but it is more isolating. In some aspects its easier because I started this as a new job and immediately started working at home instead of moving to work from home from an office position. Work friends are non-existant. I miss that. I know that I have to get out of the house everyday. Even if it just to take a walk or run an errand. At 5pm, I switch off the PC and am done. I feel very disconnected from my co-workers. As nice as it is to not have to commute, I gladly would go back to an office job.
Post # 10
I sell vintage stuff online to put myself through school.
http://theoatmeal.com/comics/working_home (Warning: has some mature content)
This is a pretty funny (and insightful!) comic on working from home. 🙂
Post # 11
@hecallsmelove: It really depends on where you would be working and what their requirements are. I take lunch whenever I want and it can be for as long as I choose. My job is very flexible though – much more so than @fishbone: ‘s and those of a lot of other people that work at home. I don’t have to keep set hours at all. It is preferred that we start any time between 5-9:30am, but even that isn’t set in stone. If I want to take a random 1-hour break I can (this can cause your day to get very long though). If I need to run an errand in the middle of the day I can just go without notice, then return home to finish my work. I know some people that work at home have to be logged in to whatever system they use, but that is not the case for my office. We physically take work home – some is done on a computer, but not all of it, so there isn’t a constant connection of any kind to my office. As long as we are still completing our assigned work then that is all that matters.
I’ve also never had a problem ending my workday and transitioning to home life.
I definitely agree with the 10+ hour day being common for people that work at home. For my office it comes down to some people being more disciplined than others. It doesn’t so much happen to me, but for a lot of people that take tons of breaks throughout the day it makes a typical 8 hours of work turn into more like 10-12. I stick to things pretty strictly just because I don’t want to get into a habit of having long days.
Also, like the PP stated, you will save a ton of sick time working at home. I save a lot of annual leave too because I can schedule things (repairmen, deliveries, etc) for the days I know I’ll be home, rather than leaving work early to meet someone. Everyone I work with still takes sick time even on their at home days, but its less frequent. Working for the fed govt though is much different than a private company – management can’t really question us asking to take sick time even if we are at home that day. Our leave is our leave to be used however/whenever we choose.
Post # 12
I work for a government agency and I work from home two days per week. I LOVE it. I start working at 6 and I’m done by 230 (unless I take a longer lunch break than 30 min). I save so much in gas and I am able to do laundry and dishes or run errands during lunch. We are required to be connected to the agency servers or else we wouldn’t be able to access the shared drives and our email. I love the quiet aspect of being at home bc my job requires a lot of concentration. However, just like in the office there are days when I just cannot focus. Being at home on these days is tough, but it is still worth it.
Post # 13
DH works from home 1 day a week and for a few weeks at a time between projects (he’s normally travelling). Honestly, he starts to get really stir-crazy even after just a week or so working from home. He basically spend all day seeing and talking to no one. If you are at all a social person, the isolation of working from home can really start to wear on you. Just something to think about.
Post # 14
I have worked from home for the past 4.5 years and it definitely has pros and cons (love the oatmeal comic!)
– No commute! I typically wake up about 15 minutes before I start working. Just enough time to brush my teeth, make some coffee, and heat up some oatmeal. Also save on gas money.
– I can (and do) work in PJs! There is really no beating the work attire. And you save on work clothes.
– Less distractions. There are no pointless office meetings, no annoying coworker stopping by to chat forever, no fire drills, etc.
– Tons of flexibility. This depends on your employer but mine really doesn’t care about set hours or anything. As long as I get my stuff done, and am generally available to him, he’s cool with it. That means that scheduling a repair person or cable guy is never an issue. I can grocery shop during the day. I can have doctor’s appointments during the day. I do have to arrange my schedule so I make up the time or get the work done still– but that flexibility is amazing
– Pets are awesome coworkers. So adorable.
– It is lonely. Really really lonely. I can go DAYS without seeing another person that I know other than my husband. Honestly having people you know/can chat to online during the day is the only way to save your sanity. Otherwise I think I might go crazy from being so isolated. There are no more friday team lunches, happy hours, or socialization in general.
– You forget how to wear pants like a normal person. Your husband thinks to tell you that “you look nice! You dressed up!” if you’re actually wearing jeans.
– New distractions. You have to be disciplined about not turning the TV on or abusing the flexibilty.
– Pets can be crappy coworkers too. Sometimes I’m on work calls and my dog starts barking at a truck outside. EMBARRASSING.
– You have to deal with people not believing that you really work. More of the housework falls on me because I”m around to do it and my husband feels like “well you’re here ALL DAY….” to which I respond “yes but I am doing an ACTUAL JOB.” I am not a housewife. I just work at home. (And he is a good guy! it is just really easy to fall into the trap of thinking that when you are aware your spouse is home 24/7 and they wear pjs all the time). And people are forever telling you “omg you’re so lucky! You get paid to watch soap operas and go to target!” Um.. no. I get paid to do a job. It’s a REAL JOB. Just like your job. Just a different venue.
Post # 15
You have to deal with people not believing that you really work.
@CorgiTales: Yesss. I get this all the time, especially from family. They’ll call and say, “are you off today?” No dear family. I am not off on random weekdays. I am working, just at home. Its very hard for people to understand.
I can also relate to “you forget to wear pants like a normal person.” Sometimes I look forward to my office days because I know I’ll get to wear a cute outfit or even just ‘real’ clothes rather than yoga pants. Such a waste to wear something like that around the house where no one is going to see it 😉
Post # 16
@adoc86: haha exactly! My mom will call me at like 2:30 pm and be like “so are you done working?” Um… no? lol. Like people– I swear to God that I don’t get paid for sitting on my ass and never working. Who would pay me to do that for 4.5 years?! 🙂 And yes to the effort seeming like a waste! It is something I actually think about a lot. Because I work from home EVERY DAY. And so unless i’m going out into the world to run errands or its a rare day when I have a client meeting, I’m probably in yoga pants with no makeup. And it seems really silly to go put on real clothes and makeup just so my husband can see it, especially because the moment he gets home from work he runs upstairs and puts on flannel PJ pants and a hoodie. But the result of which is that he sees me wear real clothes basically once a week– on Saturdays when we go out haha.