What Is Telecommuting?

All about remote work with examples

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Thanks to the growing number of internet productivity apps and VoIP services, more companies are allowing employees to work from home. Learn more about what telecommuting is with explanations and examples of telecommuting jobs.

Telecommuting may also be referred to as telework, remote work, flexible work arrangement, teleworking, virtual work, mobile work, or e-work.

What Is Telecommuting?

Telecommuting refers to a working arrangement where employees work from home one or more days a week and communicate with the office over the phone or the internet. Telecommuting benefits employers and employees since it reduces the need for office space and gives workers a better work-life balance. This type of work arrangement might also include other perks like a flexible schedule, but that's not necessarily the case with all telecommuting jobs.

The term telecommuting usually refers to a long-term arrangement. However, it's sometimes used when someone will be working from home over the weekend or during vacation. However, it's not typically a term used for situations where employees take work home with them or where a job involves off-site work or travel, such as with sales.

The terms telecommuting and telecommunication are not synonymous. Telecommunication refers broadly to the transmission of information via wire, radio, or other electromagnetic systems.

Computer security analyst working at a home office
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Examples of Telecommuting Jobs

There are plenty of jobs that could be done from home but are not. Most jobs that require only a computer and phone are prime candidates for telecommuting positions. Here are some examples of telecommuting or telework jobs:

  • Software engineer
  • Financial analyst
  • Teacher or tutor
  • Underwriter
  • Web designer
  • Interpreter
  • Writer
  • Administrative assistant
  • Travel agent
  • Systems engineer
  • Attorney
  • Medical transcriptionist

Work-At-Home Scams

It's common to see advertisements or official-looking job offers for telecommuting positions that are actually online scams. Some are "get rich quick" schemes that ask for up-front investments, while others might suggest that you'll be reimbursed for your expenses after purchasing a certain product.

It's best to look for telecommuting jobs from reputable sources, like through the company, instead of third-party job sites.

According to the FTC, "If a business opportunity promises no risk, little effort, and big profits, it almost certainly is a scam."

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