How to Get It: Customer service is the biggest work-at-home field, with companies including Spiegel, Hilton, Best Western, HSN, 1-800-FLOWERS and many others using at-home reps. Fill out an application with staffing companies such as Arise, Alpine Access, VIPdesk, LiveOps, and Convergys, all of which vet the companies who are hiring through them. If you need benefits, search through a staffing company that will hire you as an employee (Alpine Access, VIPdesk and Convergys do this) rather than an independent contractor. If you're a contractor, you may be asked to pay a small fee (between $15 and $35) for a background check. While a fee can be a sign of a scam, independent contractors are responsible for their own expenses.
Whether you’re a stay-at-home mom who hasn’t done any office work in a while or you’re 18 and just started college, you may worry the work-at-home life isn’t for you. Not because you don’t have the time or the temperament. But because you’re worried you don’t have enough experience to land a work-from-home job or, if you do, that the work won’t be easy enough to slip in around a long day with the kids or all your classes.
A wide range of businesses need workers to enter various data into their systems, whether that data are used to track inventory or shipments, create business plans, or measure performance or output. And since a computer and typing skills are the most important requirements for this job, many data entry workers are able to work at home, and on a schedule that fits their lives.
A report in The New York Times today underlines college students’ increasing flexibility: Arizona State University, one of the nation’s largest schools with more than 40,000 students, is joining with edX, the massive open online course provider founded by M.I.T. and Harvard, to offer a freshman year curriculum that offers full university credit for a mere $200 a credit. Students only pay if they pass the courses and there is no admissions process, making college accessible to students with all sorts of jobs.
If you think the market for online learning is too flooded, think again. People are drawn towards courses for the teacher. Your potential students may not like the people behind the courses currently available, but they might like you. When thinking about which online jobs you can do, consider any skills you have and share your knowledge with the world in the form of a course.
Have lots opinions on what works and what doesn't on the web? Then you might just be right for a "career" in remote usability testing. Actually, no one really makes a career at it, but user testers can pick up some extra work reviewing websites or mobile applications that may still be in development. You don't even necessarily have to be very knowledgeable about the Internet because some developers want the beginner's point of view.