Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Tools of the Trade

With the advent of the ever-advancing technology, having a home-office can now be as viable as going to the actual office itself. There are just so many things you can do now that was not available to the home-worker a decade ago.

VOIP for one has enabled many of us from India and the Philippines to make calls abroad for a very small fraction of the cost. And that means that we can have an edge over those who are living in America in terms of hire-ability (is there such a word? hehehe). WE can work for a fraction of the cost that it would take to hire an American.

The computers available now in the market for the ordinary person who wants to work are so plentiful. If you want to work at home and do not have yet the capacity to buy a brand-new quadcore PC, you can breathe easier now for my PC is actually just Pentium 4. You can also purchase a second-hand desktop computer from a reliable vendor. Just make sure that you can install at the very least the basic Microsoft software such as Windows XP, either the home or the pro version. Also, make sure that you have at the very least the MS Office 2000.

And what really amazes me is that the internet, even screamingly-fast DSL ones are now available and affordable for us! Pick a DSL that is reliable. You would not want your prospective employer to find you constantly getting booted off the server just because your ISP sucks big time.

A good headset. A webcam. A nice thermos mug that keeps your coffee warm longer than its usual porcelain sisters.

These are the things I see right in front of me so these are the ones that I have mentioned. Feel free to add.

Working At Home

It is never an easy decision to work at home. I have found it to be frustrating and rewarding at the same time.

Frustrating because there are just so many bogus employers out there. Then there are those who do are legit employers but who do not pay their workers/employees.

Another frustration is that I am always tempted to just go back to sleep especially when I check on my son and see him snoring away on the bed! I just wanna curl up on the bed beside him and snore away too. hahahaha.

The rewards though have been great! I am there for my son. He is excelling in school. He is growing up and I am there to see everything first-hand instead of the reports that I used to get from whoever was his primary caregiver at that time.... usually it was his grandma.

Working from home has given me greater freedom in terms of time. I normally wake up early, get some work done, prepare my son for school, bring my son to school and then work during the two hours that he is in school. If my 4-yr-old and I feel like going to the mall afterward, it is ok since there is no pressure to be back at my office. When my son takes his mid-day nap, that is when I take my much-needed rest too. I call it my "sacred sleep." NEVER DISTURB unless it is of extreme emergency like the house is on fire! ha ha ha

Although some projects/work require you to keep graveyard hours, it is okay since all you gotta do to go to the "office" is to get yourself a mug of strong coffee and wash your face. That's it.... no more having to take a bath (I actually work in my jammies at times he he he) and no more having to apply all that gunk on my face called make-up. No need to be pretty for clients for they cannot see my face anyways. And there is no need to drive through heavy traffic, sometimes having to drive like a madman to get to the office in time.