Just because you don’t go into an office everyday doesn’t mean that your time isn’t valuable or that your life has automatically gotten a lot easier. When you accept a work at home position, you are trading the cubicle or the lunchroom for a workspace that is more comfortable but there is still work that needs to be done. If you have children, childcare issues are well, still an issue. Here are some solutions to help with the transition.
A Myth about Working from Home
We are not talking about home-based businesses here although many work at home individuals are freelancers. Here, the careers that are highlighted are those that allow employees to perform their jobs away from the office.
One of the biggest misconceptions about this sort of employment arrangement is that you save money on childcare. Yes, there are significant savings to the wallet when you decide to telecommute, but childcare probably won’t be one of them. Think about what it’s like when the kids are home with you and you are trying to read a book or clean or complete some long put off project. The same happens when you try to actually work. No matter what your friends or family members try to convince you of, your childcare issues are still there.
5 Solutions for Handling Childcare when Working at Home
Have a plan in place beforehand – One will definitely be needed. The children will need someplace else to be when you are working. Just think about the office. Where would your kids spend their days then? Use that as your guide for fleshing out a childcare schedule.
Adjust your work hours – If you are required to work eight hours a day, that doesn’t mean they have to be eight consecutive hours (this only works at home). Begin the work day early when the family is still asleep in their beds. When the kids must be home (illness or holidays), opt for evening work while the family is winding down and less likely to interrupt.
Share duties with other work at home moms and dads – Depending on the job, work schedules may be more flexible for some than others. In that case, share childcare with another contemporary in your area on respective “free” days. It reduces the cost of finding a sitter and gives the kids a play date.
Find a private sitter – Many daycare centers price their spots on a per-week basis. For only two or three days a week care, you’ll be paying a very high rate. An in-house sitter or a private sitter may offer better options and more flexibility.
Keep a separate work area – One with a door is preferred. When the kids have to be home during work times, the door offers the ability to shut yourself off from them when you need it.
Working at home provides more play in your daily schedule but childcare solutions are still needed.