Home office careers can be divided into several different categories, including telecommuting and using the home office as a base for administrative work or as the primary place of business for independent contractors and entrepreneurs. Due to advances in technology, it has become possible to perform many different types of jobs from a home office on either a part- or full-time basis. Common home office careers include freelance writing, medical transcription, and various types of professional services, including psychotherapy. In some cases, however, jobs that were typically performed in offices, such as telephone customer service and answering service positions, can now be performed at home. As a result, the number of home office careers available to people may continue to increase over the years as different technologies make it easier for people to work from home and for businesses to avoid the cost of paying for real estate.
Many employers now offer home office careers to their employees. These employees can work from home either full-time or part-time and perform a variety of tasks. Employees may have their time tracked by the use of special software on their computers and may be able to interact with home office staff through telephone conferencing and web cam systems. While some of these companies may prefer to have the majority of their employees in the office on a daily basis, telecommuting may be available to employees with disabilities or whose job duties require them to be out of the office on a regular basis.
Some home office careers do not involve an employer/employee relationship. Instead, self-employed individuals may choose to start a business from home or may prefer to work from home even after their business is established. In some cases, a person may choose to interact with clients in her home office. For example, professionals such as physicians may maintain a fully equipped office in or adjacent to their home. Tradespeople, such as hairstylists, may also perform services at home.
People in some lines of work may choose to use a home office for conducting some types of business administration, such as billing or maintaining files, while also working outside the home providing services directly to clients. For example, building contractors will perform on-site services but will use a home office for communications with clients and sending out billing reminders. In addition, there are certain types of jobs that do not require physical contact between client and worker and, as such, are often best suited for those who work at home. These jobs may include the production of writing, research, and transcription that can easily be delivered to a client over the Internet or by mail. These home office careers often represent a more cost-effective way of doing business for both the contractor and his or her client.