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BLOG: Why you shouldn't take a pay cut to telecommute

Meridith Levinson | May 5, 2011
A recent survey shows that more than one-third of IT professionals would take a 10 percent pay cut to work from home.

Some people say they'd rather work in an office because they worry they'd be too distracted by household chores or the TV. I can tell you from first-hand experience that if you have enough work, NOTHING will tempt you to leave your home office. Oprah/ESPN, the laundry and dishes can wait.

Second, you're saving your employer money. You're one less mouth to feed on the odd occasions when the company decides to bring in pizza to boost morale. More important, it's in a company's financial interest to have as many employees as possible working from home. The more people who telecommute, the less office space the employer will need, resulting in reduced real estate and infrastructure costs. Employers will also save on office supplies.

Meanwhile, your household expenses will increase when you work from home. You'll be using more electricity to light your office and to power your computer, monitor, printer, etc. You'll have to

heat your home during the day in the winter when it otherwise would be unoccupied. You'll also be consuming more water (every time that toilet flushes) and more household items. So any savings you might have gained, for example, from not having to put gas in your car to commute will be offset—if not exceeded—by this increase in household expenses.

Finally, most corporations will use any excuse to cheat their employees out of more money. As soon as they see data suggesting that employees would do a job for less money provided they could do it from the comfort of their own home, they'll start nickel-and-diming.

I firmly believe most corporations would pay their employees in dryer lint if they could get away with it. So let's not give these cheapskates any ideas. 


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