Your work at home office is essential to your success and your ability to service customers with efficiency and professionalism.
You may be responsible for handling customers’ sensitive information so ensure that you adhere to your employer’s or client’s equipment and software requirements to maintain security.
Keep in mind that reliable office equipment keeps you logged in and making money.
The list below details minimum guidelines for a standard work at home office. Check with organizations that you are interested in regarding their specific requirements.
What’s In A Work At Home Office?
Computer Hardware and Software
Dual Core 2.0 GHz
Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10 (here are some companies that allow MACs)
Wired Keyboard and Mouse
Monitor (15″ or larger)
Speakers and sound card
Capability for reading PDF documents (such as Adobe Reader)
High speed DSL or cable internet connection (usually no wireless connections of any kind)
You may be required to meet minimum upload and download speeds.
Telephone and Devices
Only POTS (plain old telephone service) is usually allowed – no Vonage, MagicJack, or other similar services
Corded telephone (no cordless)
Analog Landline Connection (not digital) with no features and dedicated to work (for example, call waiting may interfere with the call routing system or disconnect a call that is in progress)
Telephone Headset or Headset System that plugs into telephone base and has a noise cancelling microphone and mute button. This headset will be used for taking live calls.
Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP)/PC Headset with a noise cancelling microphone and mute button. Choose a wired headset that connects to your computer via the headset and microphone jacks or via a USB port. This headset is usually used for training only.
This is the Plantronics S12 headset system, available on Amazon. I used this setup when I was just beginning working from home, and I never had any complaints.
An instant messenger platform – many companies will provide this for internal communication
Most companies do not require the following peripheral equipment.
You may be asked to prove that your computer and internet access meet requirements so be prepared.
A potential employer might ask you to provide them with screenshots of your System page as well as the results of a speed test that shows your upload and download speeds.
Access your System page from the Control Panel. The System page shows your computer’s operating system and edition along with other system information such as processor and RAM specifications.
Go to www.speedtest.net to test the speed of your internet connection. In addition to providing your upload and download speeds (Mbps), the website also lists your IP address, your general location (city and state), and the name of your internet service provider.
I’ve had to provide this information as the first step in a work from home job interview! This is unlikely but it is a possibility.
Again, these are minimum requirements for your home office for many companies, but if you can, try to exceed what most companies require so that you are always prepared.