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Telecommuting: Transitioning from the Office to Your Home


It is the dream of many people, especially moms, to find a telecommuting job that allows them to work from home. Once you find a telecommuting position that suits the needs of your employer, you, and your family, it is time to begin the transition from the office to your home. This transition should include a proper home office setup and should ensure that you maintain productivity. The transition from the office to home can be made simple by applying the following tips:

Outline Expectations with Your Employer

The telecommuting transition is a new experience for you and your employer. Even if your employer regularly allows employees to begin work from home positions, each experience is unique. Therefore, it is important to meet with your employer and outline the expectations that each of you have for the other.

Your employer should know that you will work from home as diligently as you would if you were in the office. You should also have a clearly defined payment schedule and clearly defined methods of communication. You do not want to experience a situation in which you didn't receive or complete assignments because your employer didn't check his/her email, and you didn't have alternate contact information.

Claim Your Workspace

This is one of the most important steps in your telecommuting transition. Working from home can often be a slippery slope to decreased productivity, especially for newcomers to the telecommuting world. It is easy to grab your laptop and lounge in your bed while "working."

Establishing a clearly defined workspace, whether it is in a state-of-the-art home office or via a mobile laptop cart, will help you become for focused and productive. Your brain will tell you that when you are seated in your office chair it is time to work, and you will be much more driven. Claiming your workspace will make the transition from office to home that much easier. 

Have the Proper Equipment

When transitioning from the office, you may be able to bring your coffee mug with you, but you cannot bring your office equipment. In order to maintain the productivity and efficiency levels that you achieved in your office, you must have proper office equipment at home. Make a list of the items that you had in your office, and plan a similar home office setup. If you regularly have to fax, print, and copy, look into purchasing an all-in-one printer system. When telecommuting, it is also important to have a proper Internet connection speed, a reliable email service, and one or more phone lines.

Maintain a Work Schedule

Make a schedule and stick to it. Depending on your job, you may have the privilege of being more liberal with your work hours, or you may need to work the typical 9 to 5 schedule. This will make your telecommuting transition smoother, because you will be maintaining work hours similar to your office routine. You should even schedule short breaks and a lunch period for yourself. Even if you utilize your new-found mobility and take your work with you to the park one afternoon, you should still work your usual hours. Building a work from home routine will help you maintain productivity and efficiency.

The transition from an office job to a work from home telecommuting job does not have to be a stressful one. You can have an easy transition from the office to your home, and be productive if you outline expectations with your employer, claim your workspace, have the proper equipment, and maintain a work schedule.

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