Here’s the deal: there are more than enough companies out there trying to look for creative and skilled professionals, but the problem is that they just cannot find these good guys on their own places. Another reality alongside is that there are many professionals out there seeking the right company, but the problem is that they cannot find the good company to work with.
One of the most probably and the most proximate solution to these is to work with freelancers or off-site workers for the business-end or to be freelancers for the professional-end. Freelancing has in a lot of ways grown these few years, more conveniently because of the utilization of technology like computers and the internet. With the drastic improvement in technology especially in the communication category, working with virtually anyone across the globe seems to know the least barriers than ever. These freelancers may be regularly employed by a company from afar, or they might have their own freelance services or products to offer all on their own efforts.
While it’s great to know that there’s another channel to dive our professional skills into, it is inevitable that there are still some who would prefer not to be a freelancer or not to work at home. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of working at home as freelancers, and thus help you discern if this would be a great path for you to enjoy your professional life.
Advantages of working from home
- There’s no place like home. Home is literally a word fully related to comfort and ‘abode.’ If you work at your own home, or let’s say, at your own quarter, you get to enjoy the comfort that it gives. Is your office a mess that you are always stressed about? Then stay at home.
- Save the detergent and the wardrobe. No need to take the daily routine of going to laundry shops for a spin. No need to iron your clothes only to find out your burning your energy more. No need to pick up your laundry and spend money on dry-cleaning. Just dress up the way you used to when you’re at home, and guess what? Nobody would care.
- No wallet leaks because of gas. If you are always driving to your work place, then working at home means you save a real lot of money and time for your ride and for the commuting. Always stressed or worried about the heavy traffic? Strong typhoon from the outdoors? Then close your doors and windows, and sit at your own home office.
- Get rid of bossy alarms. Regular on-site workers hate the way they are being woke up by a fuzzy alarm clock that won’t shut down after a heavy tap. If you work at home, you get to choose what time you wake up and what time you retire to bed. Want to retire during the mid-day? Your choice.
- Flexible schedules. Got a baby to attend to? Are you a person who’s always in demand by house chores or by your neighbours? Working from home means you can choose the time frame to when you are available and unavailable from work. If there’s not a regular schedule to follow, you can even adjust your work time just to bend to the surprises of the day.
- Peak of the brain. Science tells us that at a particular hour in a day, our mental capabilities are up to its peak which is therefore more efficient when put into serious tasks. If you work at home, you can take advantage of this peak hour of your brain, so you can work more in lesser the time; no tight schedule to force you to work even if your brain is exhausted already.
- Your own office. Being a freelancer, you get to plan and manage what your office will look like. Want a bunch of grapes beside your seat? Feel free. You can enjoy also the everyday mess you create, and no one but will take account of all those files, receipts, letters, etc. Want two computers in one desk? It’s your plan.
- Solid concentration. No workmates and colleagues around means lesser chance of distraction, unless you decide for yourself that you want to be distracted. Without hearing anymore gossips from co-workers and sermons from supervisors, you can enjoy a serene work place and time.
- Opportunities for balance in life. Cannot find time to go to the gym? How about a picnic with your daughter? Wanted to go fishing? Wanted to spend the first hour of the morning doing brisk walks? Since your schedule is more flexible, you can always schedule these important and healthy tasks to your planner.
- Family time. Being at home, you are more than expected to spend quality time with your loved ones. If you are tired of always being tired when you reach home, working at home means that you get to plan how you can dedicate a portion of your quality time with your loved ones. Want more romance? Wanted to play games with your children? This is the best time to do it.
- Choose your job. Choose your client. This happens if you are a freelancer and you are offering your services for a pay. Being a freelancer, you are entitled to choose your client and hence your job. You can now avoid meeting with the wrong personalities, and you can always enjoy what you are doing.
- Save on expenses. Instead of investing for another steel cabinet on your office, you can actually just save that money, and even concentrate your investments for your most optimal workspace at home. Hate seeing two electric bills at once? Afraid of office rental fees? No more.
- Disabled-friendly. If you are agitated and worried of not having a solid career because of your wheelchair, then working at home is probably the best and the most efficient option available.
- Less professional experience. A large majority of the people working at home do not really feel like they are professionals despite the load of work or opportunities. One huge factor here is that, when you’re at home, you feel at home, and hence you may be less motivated to perform like when you do in an actual office setting.
- No uniforms = no extra bragging rights. Wearing uniforms has been considered a psychological factor to boost one’s professional behaviour, performance, and perspective. Besides, the general people do look up to people with collars more than those who are not.
- Requires a lot of self-discipline. Without discipline, instead of working, you might end up doing something else. Without discipline, you will always find excuse for yourself why you did not do this or that. Without discipline, you will lose track of your time and even be disobedient with your own plans and schedules.
- Less assurance from the authorities. Working at home may be convenient and may even relieve you of a burden of a contract, but that also means you have to shoulder the taxes and other possible deductions all by yourself. How about insurance and other benefits? Trainings? Retreats? Parties? If you’ve got no company, you have to look for it by yourself… and it can be hard.
- Lack of control over results or output. Being able to handle your own time, you may fall into the trap of being overly flexible, tending you to work less than usual in a day, and procrastinate on the next day, and worse, work can even get stacked up when full of excuses. If you’ve got visitors, you might feel obliged to sit and talk to them, even when you’re in the middle of your work.
- No more-credible promotions. One reason why people work on-site is because they love doing it with the goal of getting promoted and one day be a boss. If you are a freelancer or if you are working at home, you may lose sight of these opportunities.
- In need of motivators and inspirations. Working on-site means you are exposed to a lot of professionals working at a regular pace, which in turn may boost your motivation and your productivity. Working at home without them means you get the lesser chance to get motivated and driven; you have to look for them on your own end because initially, they’re just not there.
- Isolation. Everybody hates isolation. Many professionals partly associate going to work with being with colleagues and friends, and even with people who will help them reach their goals. Working from home means the personal touch of communication is hindered, and you may end up lonely, bored, and tired all by yourself.
- No requests slips. If you are used to having your company shoulder your expenses like your food, your electricity, your steel cabinet (again), then working at home means that there’s no one but you responsible for all of these procurements.
- Sick at home. You may feel nostalgic and homesick when you go to work, but working at home can also harm you if you do not maintain discipline. Most freelancers like those on the digital end spend too much time on the computer, harming the lumbar part of the spine for over-sitting. This may also mean that you will have less time to stand up and walk, unless your job requires it. And before I forget… how about your eyes?
- Pressure from home. Being at home means that you are more exposed to house chores, and unless someone’s there willing to help you out, you will be bothered by the mess. More if you are all alone, you have to prepare your own food, wash the plates, hang your clothes, sweep the floor, wash your aquarium, etc.
- No permanent job. You may be a jack-of-all-trades and a master to one, hopefully, but this does not guarantee that you can be certain of the line of career that is currently visible to you. Moreover, if you are a freelancer, it means that you are more just a contractor than a regular employee, and in some countries, being a contractor is inferior than being the other.
Preferring and opting to be a worker at home can be a hard decision to make, but the advantages and disadvantages mentioned above are but all apparent and real for you to fully weight and discern. Nevertheless, good luck!