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Teleworkers Do It From Home 18 October 2000 Edition
Previous Edition

Yesterday's column created a great deal of feedback -- all of it positive and in favour of the concept of teleworking as one element of NZ's battle to grow a "new economy."

Some readers pointed out that we're already teleworking to a degree -- with many local companies already working on overseas projects and contracts, particularly in the are of web design.

Readers Say
(updated hourly)
No comments yet today
From Yesterday

Regarding - Renting Out Our Brains - Sean

Great Idea. I know - Drew

Teleworking for overseas companies - Steve

This would have to be one of the... - Jamie

I think that your idea... - Neil

teleworking... - Dave

Have Your Say
In the mean-time, there are some overseas sites that might be worth looking at if you're considering some international teleworking.

HelloBrain
Billing itself as "The World's Intellectual Capital Exchange," this site connect workers with projects.

Ants.com
An "Outsourcing Marketplace", Ants.com also allows IT workers, writers and developers to bid on projects from around the world.

Elance.com
Yet another open marketplace where workers can bid on contracts in a huge range of IT-related categories.

Although these sites are good, they appear to be mostly focused on connecting individual contractors with work (or vice-versa). This still appears to leave a significant void in the market where individual workers are looking for teleworking jobs without the hassle of becoming self-employed. What's needed in such cases is perhaps the formation of local companies who can employ workers on behalf of overseas clients.

This way local workers could be employed on a regular salary while the local company could re-sell the worker's skills (with a margin for profit) to the overseas client.

A local company would also be able to provide some of the elements that many teleworkers sorely miss when they move away from traditional employment -- namely a place to congregate, chat and discuss problems or ideas. A local teleworking company might offer a offices which can be shared by those workers who want to get out of the house on a regular or semi-regular basis.

This salaried subcontracting system is the way a few local consultancies already work -- perhaps what they need to do is place increased emphasis on establishing links with their peers in the USA and Europe and providing teleworking skills -- they might be surprised at just how much money there is to be made.

Stupid or Cheap?
An Aardvark reader has alerted me to yet another case where someone who can afford to do something right is taking short-cuts.

This form on the TranzRail site invites visitors to book their travel arrangements and pay using a credit card.

But there's no secure server -- and none of the input fields are even checked for validity.

Aside from the fact that even the dimmest schoolboy could write a simple script that would flood the company's system with empty messages in next to no time, the lack of a secure server must be seen as either penny-pinching or gross incompetence.

I sure as hell wouldn't be booking my travel here!

Come on TranzRail -- you can do better than this.

As always, your feedback is welcomed.

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Copyright © 2000, Bruce Simpson, free republication rights available on request