Good options for moms re-entering the workforce

Are you a stay-at-home mom ready to re-enter the workforce? More moms are job hunting to help shore up their families' finances. According to a survey, 71% of moms who returned to the workforce said financial security was the most important benefit.

But many moms with outdated skills and gaps in their resumes are having a tough time finding a position, especially since they're competing with people who've recently lost their jobs. Other women aren't exactly thrilled with the idea of taking on long commutes and spending more time away from their families. For some of those moms it may make sense to search for a way to make money from home. Here are some options.


Many moms discover that things have changed a lot since they left the workforce. One thing that may surprise them is that many companies are more willing to let employees work from home. Some women have found success calling their old employer to set up a work-at-home gig, while others have found newly-created jobs for telecommuters. You can also try calling local businesses to see if they need help. Here are five things to remember if you want a telecommuting position.

  1. You might be hired full-time, part-time, or as an independent contractor. An independent contractor isn't considered an employee of a firm, so you would be responsible for paying self-employment taxes. You also wouldn't be eligible for sick days or vacation pay.
  2. Folks who work from home are often the first to be let go when a company is looking to cut costs.
  3. Working from home gives you more control over your schedule and how to handle projects.
  4. Telecommuting is ideal for people who don't mind working independently. But some people feel isolated from colleagues and may not stick with it. That's why when you work from home it's important to develop a network of folks in your industry whom you can keep in touch with via phone, email or online social networks.
  5. A part-time telecommuting job or independent contractor gig could eventually turn into full-time employment.

Start a Business

If you think you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur, there's a good chance that you can make money from home that way. You may already have an idea for "the next big thing."

But not everyone can successfully launch a business from the ground up, so you'll need to assess your skills to find an opportunity that fits your temperament, goals and lifestyle. If you need some hand-holding, there are plenty of franchises and other opportunities with established companies. Keep these tips in mind when looking to start a business.

  1. Be skeptical of get-rich-quick schemes. There are tons of scams out there targeting the work-at-home crowd. Research any companies you consider working with to make sure they are legit. Unsolicited emails about business opportunities are a big red flag. Avoid schemes that require you to deposit checks to get paid.
  2. Use the skills you have to launch a virtual business as an administrative assistant, consultant or coach. There are a lot of folks out there who may be willing to pay you for your expertise.
  3. Don't downplay skills you've acquired as a mom. Being a chief home officer requires leadership, organization, good time management and negotiating skills. In some cases, all that volunteer work for your church or kid's school could help with running a business.
  4. Don't let people talk you into business opportunities for which you aren't suited. While your pal may be making scads of money selling products through multi-level marketing (MLM), getting into sales may not be right for you. Also, watch out for people who make big promises about how to make money from home but never give any specifics about how their business works.
  5. Don't assume that hanging out a shingle means you'll automatically get customers. Running a business is hard work that will require you to constantly promote yourself and your services. Inform everyone you know about your business and look for alliances that can help you grow.

Approach your quest to make money from home realistically. The perfect business won't just fall into your lap, so you'll have to do some work to find the right fit. Also, you'll still be a mom. So if you have children, there will be times when family issues will take precedence over business whether you work for an employer or yourself.

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