Portability is the key to taking your work home. But until you ask, you may not even know what technological possibilities exist to help you. For example, some offices allow teleworkers to basically tap into the computers on their office desks, giving them full access to the same software, files, company email system, network, and more.
Well over 200 U.S. airports offer WiFi access.
For a city-by-city guide to where you’ll find it and how much it’ll cost you, go to www.travelpost.com/airport-wireless-internet.aspx.
Think about what you need to get your job done—in terms of technology or machinery—and look into whether you can feasibly set it up in your house. For example, an air traffic controller can’t set up a home control room, but some radio hosts set up special ISDN sound studios in their homes, allowing them to broadcast to listeners who remain none the wiser.
At a minimum, you’ll likely need a home computer, perhaps with special software for backing up files and other tasks; a printer, scanner, and fax machine; a dedicated telephone line; and high-speed Internet access. Do some
research into costs—it’s an important concern, because you’re the one who’ll most likely be footing the bills. You could
also check whether there’s any unused equipment or furniture lying around your workplace that you could borrow while trying out your telework arrangement.
Second-rate equipment could hurt you. Although you’ll want to economize on equipment, that doesn’t mean compromising on your health. Clunky old keyboards and laptops were phased out for a reason: They can cause repetitive strain injuries faster than you’d expect, leading you to miss months or years of work and income (and destroying your ability to do many of your favorite hobbies). Also, your employer will want to know you’re taking the same health-related measures at home that it implements for on-site employees. Invest in your future by buying an adjustable furniture workstation with an ergonomic keyboard and desk setup. See www.safecomputingtips.com for suggestions.