Whether home office, rented office, co-working space, or coffee shop, for freelancers the work environment is vitally important to their success. But where some prefer to work from the comfort of their own homes, others need a working space full of energy and dynamic.
If we believe a numerous surveys and interviews within the last months, working remote or telecommuting is going to be the next big thing in the IT-industry, especially for self-employed workers and independent consultants. Is our private living room the work place of the future? Will we quit working with colleagues and face-to-face meetings to communicate via instant message, tele- and video conferencing with clients all over the world? To get to the bottom of this topic, the IT-network freelancermap.com conducted a survey among freelancers in March 2014 and asked its users where they usually work on their projects. Here are the results…
Home office (57%)
According to the voting, more than half of the freelancers at freelancermap.com, to be concrete 57%, prefer to work from their own homes. This result confirms the so-called “Work-From-Home Trend” which is so highly discussed in forums, blogs, and magazines all over the globe. But what makes remote work so delightful? As a home working IT-professional, you do not need to worry about traffic jams, office clothing, or colleagues. Working from home means working in your personal comfort zone. It is the highest degree of freedom in the working life as you can combine daily tasks, family life, and your job. Taking a short nap in-between, having lunch at your own kitchen with your family or enjoying your favorite soaps when others need to follow strict office hours – this is the ideal work-life-balance for a lot of freelancers.
But working from home is not for everyone! Your family is a big distraction, same to your dogs, cats, and goldfishes. Having your beloved around you all the time will make you feel like chatting or playing with them. Home entertainment like TV, stereo system, or game consoles can distract you from your tasks as well. Furthermore, being home all day long sounds cozy first, but after some time you properly will miss getting outside or chatting with people.
Rented or owned office (24%)
There is a group of IT-professional that need social interaction and creative stimulation instead of cozy working place atmosphere. To be concrete, 24% of the interviewed freelancers stated to prefer to work from a rented or owned office instead of working from a home office. The advantage is that you will focus solely on your projects when working from an office environment, not getting interrupted by the postman, the neighbors, crying children, or whining dogs. But of course, working from a rented or owned office also comes along with rental fees and extra expenses for the office, the equipment, and the daily expenditures of time and cost to reach the office. Therefore, working from an office is only for those freelancers who can count on a regular income.
Client location (12%)
In some IT-sectors, like SAP consulting, it is more common to join the client’s office for a certain period of time. 12% of the participants confirmed that they usually work at the client’s location to get the job done. When working with your client on-site, you definitely will gain more insides in the business processes and requirements than while telecommuting via Skype and co. Furthermore, the direct communication with your client is definitely a plus, making a go of your project. Nevertheless, joining the client’s office also entails some hurdles, especially in international projects. Client and contractor will need to arrange working permits, visa sponsorships, flights, and accommodations.
Co-Working Space (7%)
Further 7% of the freelancers at freelancermap.com follow a more or less new trend called “Co-Working Spaces”. For the ones of you who are not aware of this trend, working in a co-working space means sharing a dynamic and creative office environment with like-minded colleagues (we reported). When sharing an office with other freelancers, you will definitively find a lot of networking and collaboration opportunities as well as help when facing problems or lack of ideas. Furthermore, co-working spaces are a low budget alternative when not being interested to work from home as the fees for co-working spaces are cheaper than the ones for renting an office. But this comes along with loss of privacy, shared bath rooms, kitchens, and crowded refrigerators of course…
Coffee Shops, public libraries and Co. (1%)
Next to these most common work places for freelancers, another 1% of the interviewees could not find the right answer in our given set and therefore stated to work from “somewhere else”. On the one hand, this could be a Coffee Shop like Starbucks and Co., where Coffee and Frappe lovers can enjoy themselves with hot beverages and snacks, working in a complete different working environment and energizing ambience. On the other hand, there are nature lovers that prefer to work in a vital environment like a beach or a park. We also heard from freelancers who regularly work from the home of family members and friends, in public libraries, Wi-Fi enabled zones, or hotels.
Whether you are socializer, a family guy, or a lone wolf, there are many places where you can get your freelancing work done. To decide which work place might be the best for you, we have summarized some indicators you should consider. Please find a short checklist below!
Your perfect work place should
…motivate you to work and to be productive!
…provide all the tools and equipment you need!
…not disturb you from your tasks.
…not be too expensive compared to your earnings.
…make you feel comfortable and relaxed.
Author: Doreen Schollmeier – freelancermap.com Team
Pic: © freelancermap.com