ELECTRONIC COTTAGE LIBRARY
Compiled by William G. Hillman
"Telecommuting is nature's gift to our generation." Dilbert
Providing Opportunities in
Teleworking ~ Telecommuting ~ Telecottage
An exciting opportunity for teleworkers, entrepreneurs, educators, administrators
to share in an exciting new WestMan enterprise
to tap the resources of the Internet.
Use your creative and computer skills to
develop a career from your own home.
Looking For New Opportunities?
A recently founded Westman company is currently seeking e-business opportunities.
To aggressively seek out these opportunities the Westman team wants to build a database of personnel with technological, innovative and entrepreneurial skills who can be called on short notice to respond to business opportunities.
We are looking for people who have a passion for working with new technologies, are prepared to work as part of a team or independently, and who thrive in a dynamic, multi-tasking environment.
Flexible work hours are a definite option.
SEND US YOUR RESUME TODAY!
Provide detailed information of your technological, communication, and work experience.
Apply online to:
1. Reference Links in Hypertext
2. Ideas for Telework Activities
3. Teleworking Guidelines
Committee: 2000.04.27 Highlights
Guest: Stanley Singh
Director of Corporate Development
ETI: EXPLOITS TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVE
Information Technologies IT Coordinator
Grand Falls, Newfoundland
Pop 25,000 – Service centre – College town – Top 10 in Canada
Similar to Brandon
Newfoundland struggling to replace fisheries employment
Given Fed money and communities responsible for its deployment
Singh works for three boards
Job to hunt down Info Tech work and contracts
What to do with technology to make it work?
All government levels involved: Municipal, Provincial, Federal
* US economy in overheat... can’t find people... give huge incentives
Much more labour demand than supply... wages are out of whack.
This is a good deal for Americans... currency exchange: 2 workers for 1
Singh targets small firms offering a skills stable
Newfies prefer to stay on island...
so this is a promise of non-seasonal full-time work
It brings community together ... heals ... motivates
Each person has a role in the project
Bring in company... divide the work
Average person tho, doesn’t care about behind scenes... just sees end product result.
* North Atlantic College provides incubator room... company comes in
and uses it... give training.... and eventually moves to bigger facility...
Invest in a building... hardwire and equip it and it will kickstart many things
It becomes a symbol or cornerstone... project no longer hairy fairy... concrete.
Company staff people run the operation day by day.
Great if can go into partnership with college... a good synergy level... work hand in hand.
College supplies the workers by tailoring their courses in our direction... they set their courses around what we need.
Some jobs require little more than a warm body.
Opportunity at all levels... from minimal ed and input to a full-time career.
Company coming in can indicate the types of skilled workers they need and the college can respond in their course design.
* Compile a data base of work list / job bank of people and their job
This will tell potential companies what we have to offer... many unique job skills wanted... huge money if you have unique skills
* City must be big enough to offer services... minimum 30,000
* Time zones important.. we are north of Chicago and midwest cities
* Go to Internet and search
* Go to trade shows... seek out trade commissions -- Focus on what your skill sets group can handle
* EXPENSIVE: travel, hotels, registrations, expense accounts, US funds
But just need one “yes” out of hundreds of “nos”
* Work with Trade Commissioner of the area... get them to invite people for you to meet... take out ads in local papers :
“If you are expanding your company or are looking for the most cost efficient method of working... meet with us!”
* There are many well-oiled professional organizations that can help facilitate business... investors. Go to youth employment, etc. and other grant givers...
* Let the Americans know what Canadian grants they are eligible for: govt. money, perks, etc.
* Their reps come in and negotiate the financial bottom lines for their companies and go back and brag about their success and get a bonus.
* They can get workers similar to US pool at half the price.
We do all the work if they decide to come... logistics, workers, building, setup, college, infrastructure.
Can subcontract work.... Americans pay $100US... we get workers for $100CDN. ... Often more efficient to contract out.
Must draw them here rather than Winnipeg.
Start with one and nurture it and then others will follow.
Companies feed off one another... stepping stones.
IT graduates are picked up immediately... a huge IT work force.
Encourage local college & university to cooperate
Great trickle down advantages to a community
Newfoundland attracted North Carolina company: DPSI
Work on the constantly changing software needed for tools, macines, etc.
Very little government assistance
No environmental assessment
No water or food products with all the inspection and licensing hassles
No import duties
So... the traditional drawbacks to business are not present
IT is clean... growing ... and will grow more with wider bandwidths
Just need a room and terminals and teleworkers and network
Simple... great opportunity
* Nortel is currently hiring 5000 people and is expanding worldwide...sucking everyone in .... robbing the little companies.... who are begging for employees.
Great if workers want to stay in a good, safe quality town and are reluctant to move... alternate is to stay and telework.
CANADIAN TELEWORK ASSOCIATION
Linking Teleworking Associations from eight countries
GERMANY TELEWORKING ASSOCIATION
ITALIAN TELWORK ASSOCIATION
PORTUGUESE ASSOCIATION FOR TELEWORK DEVELOPMENT
SPANISH TELEWORK ASSOCIATION
FRENCH TELEWORK ASSOCIATION
UK: TCA - TELECENTRE TELEWORK TELECOTTAGE
SOME TELEWORKING GUIDELINES
DISTILLED FROM THE NET
Potential teleworkers should ask themselves:
What skills do I have?
What service can I offer?
What skills or services do people/businesses want?
What skills or services are they willing to pay for?
What income do I need?
If my skills/service match what people/businesses will pay for, will it match my income needs?
How can I find these people/businesses?
How can I contact them?
How can I persuade them to 'buy me'?
Am I sure that I can meet their demands or the agreed service on time?
Marketing falls into two categories:
1) Trying to attract people to you
2) Making sure that potential customers can find you when they are looking
Some Basic Marketing Techniques For The Telecomms Age:
1. Get a web site or advertisement - with examples of your work
2. Get listed in an appropriate directory with a pointer
to your site- this could be a paper directory of trainers or
consultants but you should also consider an electronic directory such as The Teleworkers Web Site
3. Send out a well designed mailshot - preferably via the
normal postal service (I suspect most people resent
unsolicited email more than unsolicited snail mail as you are paying all the costs). If you do use electronic mail,
target your audience VERY carefully and send a very brief email preferably direct to the appropriate person and
addressing an identified need
4. Follow up with a phone call - for many people, the hardest thing to do.
How To Describe Yourself
Play up your experience and successes not just your qualifications. The object is to attract attention, instill confidence and make them want you. The following are some do's and don't's to be observed in promoting yourself:
Say you are a student
Say you need to work from home to look after an aged relative
Say you are just starting telework
Say anything about your personal circumstances such as an inability to travel
All these things suggest your needs and that the prospective customer/employer will be doing you a favour rather than what you have to offer. Some suggest that personal circumstances might interfere with the work they want you to do.
Say what you have achieved that is relevant to the service you
Say who you have worked for before
Say how efficient you are
Say you produce quality work to tight deadlines
You must give the impression that you are reliable and experienced. If you really do not have any experience of telework play up your achievements in regular employment. If you have no experience of paid work play up community work or go out and get some experience working free for a charity or community.
Assert that the freelance or contract teleworker, as opposed to a permanent employee of a company working from their own home, must consider themselves as a business with 'something to sell', not as someone 'looking for a job'. The prospective teleworker should think of those they are selling to as potential customers rather than as employers.
One of the techniques that is often suggested is 'Networking'. Basically this boils down to the old fashioned principle of 'moving in the right circles'. You will benefit from making contacts in both social and business contexts. If you thought teleworking was for the anti-social, think again, the teleworking business is the people business. Some people network by attending functions at the local Chamber of Commerce, attending trade exhibitions, conferences and business lunch clubs, you can also join a trade/professional association if one exists (if not consider starting one. But for the modern teleworker travelling or get out and about is not the only way to network, with the Internet you can join on-line discussion groups and newsgroups, even attend some virtual exhibitions and seminars.
What to Charge
One of the most important decisions you will make is what to charge for your services. A major factor will be the salary you want or need to draw from your business, with that figure in mind you can draw up an hourly rate. But the calculation is not as simple as it might appear, you must allow for your 'overheads'. Most people will find that in order to maintain the income they received from paid employment they will need to charge two to three times the hourly rate they were paid to allow for the time they spend on essential activities that they cannot charge for plus National Insurance and personal pension (as the government are now making clear will be essential). This does not allow for overheads such as telephone, equipment (including eplacement, upgrades and repairs), insurance, stationery, advertising, and other expenses.
You may be tempted to offer lower rates in an attempt to compete with other businesses. Be careful about this, employers often know the value of work and may not trust someone who undercuts the rate or they may simply use your figure to bargain with a more experienced person. Sometimes employers are reassured by higher charges, reasoning that you must be worth it. You might vary your charges a little for certain types of work. Often some of your costs will be fixed no matter how long a contract so you might need to charge more for shorter contracts. Alternatively, the security and reduced job hunting time offered by a long contract might persuade you to offer a slightly lower rate.
As you can see, setting your charges can be a complicated business balancing what you need to earn against what the market will stand. For this and many other reasons it is worth meeting with other teleworkers to discuss such issues. If you are unable to meet any locally, join an on-line forum.
Making A Success Of Your Telework Business
Like all businesses teleworkers can fail in three principle ways: not finding work, taking on work beyond their capabilities and not getting paid for the work they do.
We have looked at ways of finding work above but taking on work beyond your capabilities can be a disaster too. Many people through desperation or over enthusiasm take on work with unrealistic deadlines or take on too many contracts. Upsetting customers by not delivering on time is the best way to ensure that they do not return. They do not want to hear how busy you are if you are running late. The time to tell someone you are too busy to handle their business is when you are approached not when they are chasing you to complete. Taking on more work than you can handle is the wrong decision, instead consider taking on an assistant or contracting the work to another teleworker. You might consider having an arrangement with another teleworker to pass on work to one another in busy times.
Let's face it, some people are crooks and are going to make it difficult for you, some are incompetent or inefficient and may intend to pay you but mess up somewhere along the line but many people who experience problems getting paid have only themselves to blame. By organising your business properly you can weed out all but the most determined crooks.
Make sure you get a written order or contract for the work you are to undertake which carefully specifies the work you are to do, the time scale, the criteria for agreeing the quality of the work and the terms of payment. This will avoid disputes later on, or at least ensure they are settled in your favour and if you stick to your guns and don't start work until you have a signed contract, the inefficient will weed themselves out because they rarely get around to signing.
Make sure the person who places the order or contract is authorised to do so and not cutting corners. One of the biggest problems in dealing with government departments and large corporations is getting paid for the work you have actually completed because the order was placed without raising the appropriate purchase order, at which point the finance department simply refuses to raise a cheque. Now legally you may be entitled to payment (maybe not) but the finance department are working to strict rules designed to prevent fraud and maintain careful financial control. Never, ever undertake any work for a government department, local authority, health authority, utility company, school, college or any other public body without an official order number. If you get your order number and do your job properly you are pretty much guaranteed payment, without an order number you are in for trouble.
Get an efficient accounting system, send printed invoices on time,
quote order numbers and send reminders and statements as soon as the invoice
is due for payment. Don't be afraid to follow up with a polite phone call
if the money does not arrive on time. Have the order number, invoice number
and relevant names, contract etc. to hand when you call and get the names
of the person(s) you talk to. At first simply say you are phoning about
a due invoice, don't ask if there is a problem at this point, let them
explain why it has not been paid. If they say that the work was not satisfactory,
you should have covered the arrangements for acceptance and agreed satisfaction
before sending the invoice so you can politely point that out. If they
say they have not received the invoice say that is strange because you
personally raised the invoice and you are sure it went out to the correct
address, ask them to check again. If they still say it has not arrived
agree to send another but check the address and the name of the person
to send it to. Also ask how soon you can expect payment after the second
invoice arrives. Send
the invoice Recorded Delivery to prove arrival. If payment still does not arrive it is worth speaking to the person who placed the order and enlisting their assistance.
If all else fails you may have to resort to other means. If you have no other recourse but the law then the Small Claims Court can be very effective provided your claim is within their limits. Often even starting such an action can result in quick settlement.
Is Teleworking Really For You?
Becoming a successful teleworker involves much more than just providing your service for someone else from your home. Unless you are very lucky and have reliable paying customers beating a path to your door you will spend at least as much time on other tasks as you do actually working on service you set out to sell. If you are unwilling to do all these things that are so essential to success then perhaps teleworking is not for you. But if you can throw yourself into these activities with thoroughness and enthusiasm then you are likely to have a satisfying and enjoyable time.
Hillman Work Log: Internet Research - Assessing the Telework Situation
7-10, 11-2 = 6 hours
10am-12 = 2 hours
7am-10 & 11-4 6-8, 9-3am = 16 hours
10 -12, 2 hours
THE INTEGRATION OF MICROCOMPUTERS INTO THE
HIGH SCHOOL LANGUAGE ARTS PROGRAMME
4. Practical Assignments to Facilitate
5. Two Graduation Presentations
Dedicated to the