Working from home is one of the great benefits of living in an Internet-connected society. But if you plan on eContracting from a home office — no matter the type of work you do — robust bandwidth is a must! Everything from uploading a rich media file to taking part in an online video conference requires a speedy connection.
A Detailed Look at an Internet-Ready Home Office
Make sure your desktop or laptop computer is a recent model with enough RAM and CPU power to run the latest versions of the office software and other programs you’ll need for work. If you are programming from home, some extra RAM — up to 8GB — is a plus, especially when trying to run a feature-laden IDE like Microsoft’s Visual Studio or Eclipse. A large monitor, even if you use a laptop, helps in managing the ill effects of eye strain.
A newer wireless router is also definitely a plus, giving you the most flexibility in the location of your home office. On a nice day, you may even be able to work outside with a strong enough wireless signal. If the router is located in your home office, consider the added security and signal strength of a directly wired Ethernet connection.
How Fast Should Your Internet Speed Be?
An Internet connection of at least 5 Mbps is a requirement when eContracting from home. If more than one person shares the same bandwidth, 10–20 Mbps makes more sense, especially if there will be a lot of video conferencing. Be sure to check your Internet speed regularly, and if you notice any slow periods talk to your ISP about getting a refund!
Working from home beats a daily commute, especially during winter, but a slow Internet connection is sometimes as bad as an icy highway. Before setting up your home office, make sure your computer, router, and Internet service provider are all up to snuff!