It comes as a surprise to many that not all work-at-home jobs allow for a flexible schedule. In fact, many telecommuting jobs require a set, regular routine and will want verification that you’re working and that your work environment is free from distraction (i.e. children).
But many people turn to working at home because they need or want flexibility. Some are parents, wanting to raise their children around work. Others are caring for ailing loved ones and need flexibility to go to doctor’s appointments and attend to family needs. Many are baby-boomers, who want to travel or spend more time on leisure activities.
The good news is that many home-based jobs can be done on your own schedule. Below is a list of … jobs you can check out if you want more control in your schedule. Please note that flexibility often means that the jobs are done on a contract or freelance basis. The reality is the employers are allowed to make more controlled demands (i.e. you HAVE to work these hours). Companies that hire contractors can only control the outcome of what they want (the work), but not so much the how or when, which gives you greater flexibility. Note that contract work can be steady and even part- or full-time. Further, it might allow for greater tax advantages.
If you can string words together coherently, writing is one of the most flexible jobs you can have, particularly if you focus on Internet writing. You can work anytime and live just about anywhere and be a writer.
Websites need content and are paying others to write it. Along with article writing, you can copy write (sales letters, ads etc), ghostwrite (articles, blogs, books), and more. Writing is the main way I make money (blogging, freelance and books), and I love it because I don’t have appointments or other things to dictate my day. I might have deadlines, but every day I wake up and decide what I’ll work on and when.
Over at Digital Writer Success you can get a free report on 7 ways to make money writing online, plus get weekly writing jobs, tips and more.
More and more people are building their income streams online and they need help to do it. While some employers might want you available during certain hours, for the most part, virtual assistants are told what needs to be done and then are allowed to do it on their schedule. I have two VAs and with both, I tell them what I need and they do it when it fits their schedule. As long as it gets done, I don’t care if they work in the middle of the night or early in the morning.
Virtual support work varies a great deal. Some provide office support type work such as managing email, others providing bookkeeping, website support, or marketing. Check out How to Work-At-Home as a Virtual Assistant post for more information and 11 job resources.
There are a wide variety of tutoring and teaching jobs. Some are for primary education and others are for college. Some tutoring work involves helping foreign students. The ease and affordability of Skype and other online video conferencing has made tutoring from anywhere doable. While some tutoring/teaching jobs have a set schedule, many allow you to take on the amount of work you want and to provide services on your schedule.
Another academic related job I see a lot is curriculum development, which would be as flexible as writing.
Learn more about educational jobs and see a list of work resources in this post; 16 Virtual Teaching and Tutoring Job Resources
Web Design/Graphic Design
Web and graphic design are two very different things, but I’ve lumped them together. In fact, if you can do both, you may have more opportunities for work, as many employers are looking for someone who can do both.
The affordability and ease of building websites has changed the landscape a bit, but work is still plentiful especially if you can take slightly more challenging tasks such as coding and setting up ecommerce sites.
The web has become more visual, and with it, there is a need for graphics and therefore a need for graphic designers.
Of all the flexible work-at-home jobs, public relations and marketing might be the best paying. If you can create materials that sell, businesses want you. Public relations work includes things like writing press releases and outreach for media appearances. Marketing work includes everything from content creation, social media, and advertising.
The flexible, lucrative option is copywriting; which involves writing persuasive content (i.e. sales letters). I took the AWAI course on copywriting many years ago and found it really thorough. Although I don’t work as a copy writer, the things I learned have helped me marketing myself fairly successfully.
Along with data entry, I get asked about home-based typing jobs a lot. Although I’m leery of any job advertised as “typing,” transcription is a legitimate job. The pay varies depending on the level of skill and knowledge required. For example, general transcription often doesn’t pay as well as legal transcription.
Check out this post 8 Places to Find Home Based Transcription Work for more information and resources.
The world is increasing smaller. In an instant, you can send a message to the other side of the world. However, language still divides. Many companies hire translators to help overcome this divide. Translaters work in many areas from education to law. If you are fluent or even competent in a second language, translation can be a great flexible career option. FlexJobs has a list of the 100 best flexible translation companies to work for.
Although resources such as Quickbooks makes money management and tracking easier, many business still prefer to hire help. Of all the requirements I see for financial help services, a knowledge of Quickbooks (the software or online version), is the most common, along with experience in accounting, bookkeeping or tax prep. In some cases, a CPA is requires, which often means higher pay.
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Leslie Truex is an ideaphoric writer, speaker, entrepreneur, social worker and mom trying to do it all from the comfort of her home. Since 1998, she's been helping others create careers they love by providing work-at-home information and resources through Work-At-Home Success.
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