Have you ever found yourself sitting in your office, wondering why you couldn’t just do your job from home? Believe it or not, telecommuting is a riding trend among American employers for various reasons, and you might be able to achieve such an arrangement. If you like the idea of working from home, you’ll need to approach your boss about telecommuting.
Of course, this isn’t something you should mention in passing after a meeting or during a break at the water cooler. Even if your boss is amenable to the idea, he or she will not be able to give you an answer right away. Before you approach your boss about telecommuting, you’ll need to prepare a game plan and set up a private meeting for the discussion.
The first thing to remember is that telecommuting is mutually beneficial for the employee and the employer. You get to spend more time with your family, prepare spreadsheets in your underwear and take trips to the grocery store whenever you please. In return, your employer saves on the office space, the materials and the equipment you would use at the office. When you approach your boss about telecommuting, those benefits should find their way into the conversation.
Furthermore, you will need to explain to your boss exactly how you will go about telecommuting. Do you have a private office in your home? Do you work well on your own without supervision? Do you have access to high-speed Internet and the necessary equipment? In many cases, employers will provide telecommuting employees with equipment, but it helps to have it to begin with.
Once you’ve scheduled a meeting with your boss to discuss telecommuting, you’ll need to present your points in a logical and orderly fashion. He isn’t paid to care about your family situation or your need for flex time; he cares about how your work-at-home job will benefit the company by which he is employed.
If you find that your boss isn’t exactly thrilled by your desire to telecommute, you might want to throw in the option for a trial run. Explain that you’d like to see how it works for three-six months, then evaluate it from there. Tell your boss that if it becomes a problem, you’ll be happy to return to the office on a daily basis.
You can also approach your boss about telecommuting on a part-time basis. This is an increasingly popular option where employees come into the office on Mondays and Wednesdays, then work from home every other day of the week. Arrangements like this make it easier for your boss to swallow and more likely that you’ll get what you want.