While it would always be a given for any professional to prepare himself/herself technically and mentally for any kind of work he/she has agreed to perform for any company, the kind of preparation necessary for a conventional work set-up isn’t necessarily the same with what is required in a telecommuter set-up. This owes to the fact that a conventional set-up only asks of the pro to show up every weekday at the workplace and do all specified tasks and perform all specified responsibilities that go with the job description.
A telecommuter set-up doesn’t work that way. Although a telecommuting worker needs to work every weekday just like any office employee, his/her physical presence in the workplace is not required. Nonetheless, what is required of the telecommuter could be far more demanding in terms of focus and connectivity. A budding telecommuter therefore needs to be aware of certain technical and mental preparations that he/she needs to do before plunging into this kid of set-up.
Since a majority of a telecommuter’s work gets done online such as paperwork, correspondence and even collaboration with office-based coworkers, there would be a serious amount of online and digital equipment and system tools management in the work equation. Most of these tools involve technical proficiency with business VoIP access such as IP phones and their networks, and the familiarity with various online system features like call forwarding, Internet fax and voicemail. These are a few of the basic technical preparations that the budding telecommuter has to make available once he/she decides to pursue this set-up.
As matter of requirement, telecommuters are usually made by companies to comply with certain tech infrastructure like the following:
- A strong and reliable broadband connection to facilitate the relay of information, documents, various multimedia files, communications, message retrieval systems, and file sharing options.
- Technical proficiency with online technologies such as the internet, search engines, apps, software, email and other modes of electronic message transmittal systems.
- Online telecom systems access like home phones, video/call conference account, smartphones, mobile phones, tablets or phablets and the necessary PBX system extension options to facilitate call forwarding.
- Online payment system account. Most companies who hire telecommuters from remote regions in the world often make payments to such professionals via legitimate online payment systems. This enables the worker to receive payments from the company. Telecommuters could then opt to make payments through the same system to those he/she owes money to or have the funds in them transferred to a savings account with a local unibank where he/she is located.
Since online collaboration is even more professionally demanding than anything done face-to-face in terms of precise delivery of services and meticulous attention to time, the soon-to-be telecommuter needs to be mentally prepared to do the following:
- Be more conscious of differing time zones. The telecommuter needs to adjust especially when the company employing him/her happens to be situated in a location with a different time zone than the one he/she is located. Work hours need to be adjusted in such a way that the telecommuter must be willing to work at odd hours so as to be available online during the remote location company’s regular work hours. This usually happens between telecommuters located in eastern hemisphere locations and companies located in western hemisphere locations.
- Be more aware of real-time access. Since the web is an always-on tech infra that relays everything in real-time fashion, telecommuters must value its omnipresence with the desire to maximize its convenience. Work could be done and results could be relayed even beyond working hours.
- Be mindful of cloud computing and their use. File sharing will take place a lot of the times. Work files need to be made available to all collaborating partners via cloud computing technologies. These are designed to make working together from separate locations possible without the need for travel and legwork.