Guest Author: Emily Miller
It’s safe to say that the pandemic has thrown all of us for a loop. 2020 was a scary, uncertain, humbling year, and nothing is the same – including our jobs. Like many others who are seeking the safety of their own homes, you’re probably looking for a way to do work remotely, whether that’s in your current position or in a new position that’s been made remote this year. Even beyond the pandemic, remote work is the future, so we might as well hop on the bandwagon.
But is Fort Worth remote friendly enough? You’ll be glad to hear that Fort Worth actually offers a wealth of remote work resources, whether we’re talking about office spaces, internet, or work devices.
Stable Internet Connections
First thing’s first – if you’re going to work from home, you’ll need a reliable internet connection. The internet speed you need depends largely on what you do for a living and how many internet users are in your household. Whether you’re looking to upgrade your connection at home or look for a public network, this city’s got you covered.
Set up internet at home
Most remote employees will be working from home, at least for the foreseeable. If that’s you, you need an internet connection that can handle the traffic. Start with taking an internet speed test. The minimum you should be looking at is around 2 to 6 Mbps for smooth Zoom calls and basic office work. If your current connection doesn’t reach that, it’s time for an upgrade.
Luckily, better internet is at your fingertips, as Fort Worth benefits from multiple internet providers that can make sure all your broadband needs are covered. You can be on a Zoom call, email a client, and have your child taking an online class at the same time.
Free library hot spot
A wonderful effort has been put forward by the Dallas Public Library, which has been enabling library card holders to check out hotspot devices ever since March. The county even supplemented these devices in order to ensure that all the underserved communities in the county can have access to a connection for work or school.
With so many employees switching to remote work and people being encouraged to stay at home, it was essential for local institutions to provide accessible resources, so if you’re struggling in that department, a trip to the local library may just solve your problem.
Take advantage of free Wi-Fi
If you don’t have reliable Wi-Fi at home, there are ways around that. Beyond the pandemic, working remotely is made easy in the city – there are several locations in the Fort Worth area that provide free Wi-Fi, from airports to coffee shops.
- The public library is the most obvious choice. All you need is a library card and you can take your laptop or use a library computer for your needs. The downside is that conference calls may be discouraged or prohibited as that may distract other library-goers.
- Coffee shops almost always have Wi-Fi at the ready for patrons. Pick your favorite from the many charming local businesses. Otherwise, you’re always guaranteed to find free Wi-Fi in Starbucks.
- If you’re anywhere near the airport and in a pinch, they won’t mind if you use their free Wi-Fi to get the job done.
What if you just don’t have space for a home office? You’ve got kids, loud pets, a spouse who also works from home, or a very small living space. That’s when you start looking for a different remote workspace.
If you miss the reassuring clickety-clack background noise of a traditional office, you can join thousands of people across the country and rent an office in a co-working space or shared office.
Renting an office gives you the best of both worlds – the option to still work close to home, wear whatever you want, and work your own hours, while still benefiting from the comforting buzz of the office. This way, you gain “co-workers” and don’t have to feel as isolated. And while this is more of a post-pandemic solution, there are ways to make it work even now, with proper safety measures, like masks and social distancing.
There are several options in the Fort Worth area, including:
- Common Desk
- Ensemble Coworking
- Co-work friendly cafes
Local cafes are not just great places to get a fresh cup of hot coffee but can also make great remote work resources. Hot coffee, free Wi-Fi, and outlets that are yours for the taking if you don’t mind carrying your laptop into town.
Michelle, aka @fortworthwoman, is a teacher turned counselor turned mommy turned entrepreneur.
Michelle has a passion for connecting, encouraging and informing about the good happening in our city. The good people, events, food, stores, entrepreneurs, and good deeds are her focus. She has created a niche for herself by using social media as a native marketing tool that has created meaningful exposure for local businesses in Fort Worth to a wide but very particular local audience.