Although there is a growing number of workers transitioning to a telecommuting work status, many are surprised that it hasn’t become as prevalent as expected. With news that some of the biggest corporations are contracting their teleworking benefits, some have wondered when it will be widespread in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom.
Since 2005, telecommuting in the U.S. in both the public and private sectors has grown between three and eight percent each year – there was a period between 2007 and 2008 that it jumped 14 percent. Whether it gets a substantial boost in the near future remains to be seen.
Concerning those who have built new careers by working from home, the percentages of global telecommuters, freelancers and at-home small businesses have increased in recent years, especially in the wake of the Great Recession, which caused many to start creating their own career opportunities.
Due to budget restraints, business model revisions and a change in the workplace landscape, numerous companies have started outsourcing their work to teleworkers, who can perform a task at hand at a lower cost than a salaried employee. This market is growing at a rapid rate (one can see it first hand on Elance or oDesk, for example).
How does one market their teleworking status, though? Here are some tips to inform the world that you’re a professional work-from-home worker who can get the job done at an affordable cost.
If you’re a freelance graphic designer, writer or search engine optimisation specialist, it’s important to have a detailed, professional website that has pertinent information about yourself: contact information, pricing, samples and testimonials. This will show potential clients that this is one teleworker that is on the level and will offer professional, quality services.
The rise of the social media industry has allowed businesses an affordable means to showcase their product or service to the world. By promoting an individual’s teleworking status on Facebook and Twitter, utilizing the tips and tricks of getting noticed and remaining active on social networks, companies and headhunters will easily discover a teleworker.
It’s important to maintain a detailed account portfolio on websites like Elance, oDesk, Freelancer and other job boards. The same thing can also be said regarding account pages on employment websites such as Workopolis and Monster. In addition, it’s crucial to add a small bit of teleworking status.
This is often overlooked, but a signature on each email is one good way to let everyone know that you are able to telecommute and complete any assignment from home. By spending a few moments on an email account feature, a signature can easily be added with a name, contact information, a link to the website and a brief point – for example: “Your Professional Remote Writer.”
Rather than posting ads of your teleworking status, replying to job advertisements and waiting for responses, be active online. This can be anything: answering questions on Yahoo! Answers, responding to inquiries on forums (be sure they’re in your niche) and sharing interesting information.
Don’t wait for possible prospects to come to you. Instead, go to them. This can easily be done by making local queries with businesses in your vicinity – did you know half of small businesses do not have a website? This is a perfect opportunity to showcase your skills and inform these enterprises of your services.
This is the old-fashioned way and it could still work from time to time. Create a compelling flyer, print 100 or so out, post them on public message boards and tell the world that you are an excellent writer, editor, graphic designer, proofreader and web specialist.
Are you a telecommuter? If so, how do you market your status? Let us know in the comment section.