Are you interested in working remotely, but aren’t sure how to begin? Virtual Vocations can help. Read on to learn more about our latest e-course, Getting Started with Telecommuting. And the best part? It’s free!
e-Course Overview: Getting Started with Telecommuting
As more companies and professionals transition to remote work environments, it’s exciting to think about how you can benefit from working at home. You might be a good candidate for telecommuting work if you can relate to one of the following:
- Some of your friends or colleagues have transitioned to telecommuting, and you’re wondering if you should, too.
- You’re in a career slump, looking for a change, or attempting to ease into retirement.
- You’re getting back into the workforce after being away for an extended time.
- You suffered an injury and can’t return to your original place of employment, so you’re looking for alternatives.
If you’re thinking of telecommuting, but not sure where to begin or whether you should try, Virtual Vocations offers a Getting Started with Telecommuting e-Course for FREE.
How the e-Course Works
The Getting Started with Telecommuting e-Course is located within our Telecommuting Toolkit, which is a library of resources for telecommuting professionals. Sign up for a free Virtual Vocations membership (using your name and email address) to access the Toolkit and e-Course.
The e-course is a four-day, self-study course sent over email. Each day, you receive a module loaded with information that introduces you to telecommuting and helps you decide whether it’s a good fit for you.
The first email provides an overview of the entire course, a video to watch, and some downloadable materials. The remainder of the course is divided into four modules:
- Module I: Telecommuting Basics
- Module II: Are You Really Ready to Work Remotely?
- Module III: Finding the Right Telecommuting Job
- Module IV: FAQ’s and Answers for Telecommuters with Virtual Vocations’ CEO
Keep reading to get a sneak peek of each module as well as the common telecommuting pitfalls that the modules address.
Module I: Telecommuting Basics
Telecommuting isn’t rocket science, but it does take some street smarts to avoid traps and false claims. The first module of the course defines the nature of telecommuting and helps you differentiate telecommuting jobs from other opportunities. Topics covered in Module 1 of the Getting Started with Telecommuting e-Course include the following:
Some offers are too good to be true. It’s normal to get overly excited when you initiate your telecommute job search and apply to any job that looks appealing. It’s also normal to hastily accept a position from the first employer who responds to your application. In Module I, we help you develop a sixth sense for scams and fake job postings.
Don’t let this scare you, however. There are plenty of legitimate opportunities out there, but it’s important to be aware of potentially fraudulent claims to avoid falling into a trap.
Related: Job Search Tips – Avoid Scams
Business Opportunities vs. Telecommuting Jobs
There’s a difference between landing a remote job and accepting a remote business opportunity. Sometimes the two are hard to distinguish. Unlike scams, business opportunities can be legit, but you still need to be careful and know what you’re getting into before signing any contracts. If you intend to receive a steady paycheck, report to a manager, and receive delegated tasks, job postings that offer work-for-yourself perks won’t align with your career interests.
Module II: Are You Really Ready to Work Remotely?
Too often, jobseekers imagine telecommuting to mean waking up whenever they want, working in their pajamas or on the beach whenever they feel like it, not answering to bosses or adhering to heavy demands, and never having to send another email or attend another meeting again.
Though some positions lend themselves to this type of lifestyle, most professional telecommuting jobs require the same work ethic and expectations as a traditional, onsite office job. The difference is that you don’t have to commute, get dressed up every day, call off when your kids are sick, or share office space with other people.
While you can exercise great control over your daily life and schedule, you’re not relieved of professional responsibilities. Plus, since you’re no longer working face-to-face with colleagues, you need to leverage your social media profiles, websites, and other online resources as a reference to validate your skills, job history, and professionalism.
Module II helps you figure out whether telecommuting is right for you and if it’s the right time for you to start telecommuting through e-course sections like the following:
The Home Office
Not everyone is cut out for telecommuting. It takes discipline, self-management, and organization. Even though you work at home, you need to separate your work space to maintain productivity and personal sanity. Add kids to the mix, and the challenge increases exponentially.
One of the advantages to telecommuting is the ability to more efficiently balance work and family, but the lines can quickly blur during your transition to remote work. It’s best to take expert advice and set up a home office properly to minimize negative effects during your adjustment period.
Your Online Presence
When you apply for telecommuting jobs, potential employers turn to the internet to determine whether you are a legitimate professional and a good candidate for their position. Thus, your online presence must align with your career path. Module II helps you polish up your virtual profiles so that interested employers get an accurate, appropriate summary of who you are.
Module III: Finding the Right Telecommute Job
Just because you want to telecommute, doesn’t mean you can or should. Believe it or not, some telecommuting jobs have restrictions. Many jobseekers envision a carefree, work-whenever type of lifestyle when they think of telecommuting. Although this may be true for some, certain professions still require that you work within a set of parameters. Remember, telecommuting shifts the work environment and communication methods, but it doesn’t necessarily shift the work itself. You still need to adhere to company requirements and policies.
Module III is all about helping you find telecommuting jobs that are right for you by addressing challenges like these:
Some jobs require you to work in a particular time zone. Before you sell your house and book a one-way ticket to Fiji, make sure you’re prepared to adjust your regular business hours. Depending on your priorities, you may need to expand your search to include job categories that lend themselves to flexible schedules. Module III goes into detail about work schedules, travel, and location requirements that many new telecommuters don’t anticipate.
When you’re new to telecommuting, it’s normal to feel insecure about sending personal information across the internet to employers you’ll never meet. Even if a job posting looks real and the company is established and well-known, it can be strange to send details about yourself through a mysterious portal, especially if you never talk to or hear back from an actual person. Telecommuting should be fun and rewarding – not scary and intimidating. Therefore, Module III has helpful tips for researching companies and safely applying to jobs.
Module IV: FAQ’s and Answers for Telecommuters with Virtual Vocations’ CEO
Another misconception about telecommuting is that you’ll work in total isolation with no one to guide or advise you though your transition to a new remote career. However, in this day and age, many experienced telecommuters are eager to share their knowledge and lessons learned. Module IV addresses this common concern:
New telecommuters often feel isolated and confused. They don’t know who to turn to for answers to specific questions. Laura Spawn, co-founder and CEO of Virtual Vocations, has helped telecommuters find jobs for over 10 years with her 100% virtual telecommuting company. In Module IV, Spawn provides answers to important questions she has received throughout the last decade. You can’t find answers like these anywhere else on the internet!
How to Get the Most Out of the e-Course
Spoiler alert: There are no tests or quizzes. You won’t be graded or given accolades for completing each module, and there’s no glorifying certificate at the end. However, you will gain so much knowledge about telecommuting, understand how you can get started, feel confident during your job search, and be one step closer to achieving more work-life balance.
Whether you’re still on the fence or ready to plunge into telecommuting, use this free e-course as a launching pad to transform your career and your life. Here are some tips on how to get the most out of this course:
Set Aside Time
Give yourself at least 30 minutes each day to read through the course and materials. You don’t need to memorize the content for a test, but consider it a guide to help you through the next chapter of your career and life. You’ll find that investing in yourself and your education pays off in the short and long run.
Take notes and write down responses to the questions asked. Jot down additional questions and concerns that arise during your study. Use this as a time of intentional reflection to better understand your abilities and interests. Capture ideas and tips to ponder and explore in more depth so that you improve your chances of success.
Use the Materials
Read and listen to the supplemental materials. Each module includes helpful downloads and links so that you get the most information possible. Go through these resources and use them as references in future. The course emails are great on their own, but the supplemental materials dive into greater detail and answer more questions about embarking on a telecommuting journey.
Take the Next Step
If you’re still on the fence by the end of the course, take some more time to evaluate your lifestyle goals and needs. Read through the blog, check out our other telecommuting guides, and review the “Getting Started” course again. On the other hand, if you’re revved up and ready to jump in head first, keep the momentum going and take advantage of the special offer at the end of the course. It will help you put your new knowledge and confidence into action so that you can build the life and career of your dreams.
With our Getting Started with Telecommuting e-Course, you may decide that telecommuting is the perfect work environment for you. You may find that telecommuting part-time or as a side gig works great with your lifestyle. You may even wish to turn your current job into a telecommuting position. Whatever you decide, we hope this e-course broadens your telecommuting awareness and provides a means to build your ideal lifestyle and achieve better work-life balance.
Will you enroll in the Virtual Vocations Getting Started with Telecommuting e-Course? Share your answer when you connect with Virtual Vocations on Facebook and Twitter, and don’t forget to hashtag #VVWorkandFamily with us from October 2 – 7 for National Work and Family Month. We’d love to hear from you!
Joining Virtual Vocations grants you access to our hand-picked telecommuting jobs database. Our family-owned company is committed to helping you find quality job leads. We strive to help make your work-at-home job search faster, easier and safer by bringing you scam-free jobs that offer some form of telecommuting or virtual work.
Learn how our service works, browse job leads by location and career category, or search hundreds of hand-screened telecommuting jobs to find legitimate work-at-home job leads that match your skills and background.