Guest Blogger: Katie Conroy (advicemine.com)
Many Americans lost their job in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, job losses are at their highest since the Great Depression, according to research from the University of Minnesota. If you’re out of work, you might consider getting a remote job. Working independently gives you the flexibility to work from home.
The great news is that there are many opportunities available. From 2005 to 2019, remote work increased a whopping 159%. The rise has been further exacerbated by COVID-19’s stay-at-home measures. Today, you can do everything from sales to graphic design at home.
Follow this step-by-step guide to finding a fitting remote opportunity and excelling in your new role working from home.
Find the right gig
Before you start hunting, consider what kind of opportunity might fit your skillset. The Balance Careers provides a list of remote job options, from customer service to sales. Take a look and get inspired. Once you have an idea of the type of job you want to do, you can narrow down your search. For example, some platforms are more broadly focused, while others focus on niche areas, like graphic design or content writing.
Set up your home office
Once you have your dream job, you can create your dream office. Don’t just slouch on the couch or work from the kitchen table. Having a dedicated office apart from the distractions of home life will enhance focus and productivity. Opt for ergonomic furniture that supports healthy posture, as well as fits your budget. You can also consider getting an adjustable-height desk that you can use standing or sitting.
Invest in the right tech tools
You will also need tech tools to successfully work remotely. In addition to a computer and high-speed internet, you may want a headset for video conferences. To further enhance your health and safety, consider investing in a wireless ergonomic keyboard. This will offer wrist support to decrease the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome. You might also want to invest in productivity technology, like the Evernote time management tool or Slack for communication.
Streamline your brand
As your freelance business grows, make it official. Boost your brand by settling on a streamlined business name, logo, and website design. This can help you get more remote work in the future. You can also use something like a logo on marketing materials, including business cards, brochures, and advertisements. Presenting a cohesive brand fosters customer awareness and loyalty.
Consider formally establishing a business entity
Another way to make your customers take you more seriously is to formally establish your business as a legal entity. Forming a limited liability company, LLC, helps to protect your personal assets in case of legal claims. It also provides tax advantages and greater flexibility. Different states have different laws surrounding LLC formation, so it’s important to check your local legislation first. You don’t have to pay a lawyer big bucks to file the paperwork needed to form a business. You can use business formation services or even do it yourself.
Find your network of fellow freelancers
While remote work offers many perks, some freelancers report feeling lonely because of the lack of face-to-face contact. Build a virtual support network. Attending Zoom after-work drinks and networking events is a great way to stay connected and motivated.
While transitioning to remote work can be daunting, the above steps will help you make the change smoothly. You may ultimately find that you enjoy working from home even more than working in an office. You just have to invest some time and money into getting your home business running at the beginning.