6 Tips For Working From Your RV
1. Office Space
Having space for work that is comfortable and supports your ongoing needs to conduct business is very important. In an RV there is usually a dining area, booth and in some of the newer 5th wheels, an office space to work from. Our Gateway had a dining table. We removed the dining chairs, turned the table sideways, added a couple large monitors along with a very comfortable office chair.
For office supplies, files, cables, thumbs drives, laptop storage, and all those miscellaneous things needed to handle the administrative side of the business, I reverted back to a large briefcase. Maybe a little old school, but after trying various file cabinets, this was compact, stores the essentials and makes it’s very easy to find those little offices things when needed.
2. Technology and Tools
Each remote work task is a little different, but there are several items that are critical for conducting business. First of all, don’t go cheap. Whatever will be used on recurring tasks, make sure it has the speed and reliability to meet your needs without failure or interruption. A video editor’s requirements are much different than the blogger and different from the person performing remote medical billing. What’s the same for a PC, laptop and any other technology; it must work and meet the requirements of the remote task at hand. We also cover a few other items in the video below.
Remote Internet is one of our largest business expenses. It’s almost impossible to run a business using campground Internet. Internet intensive tasks are not well suite from a coffee shop or the parking lot of one of the large burger chains. We use unlimited AT&T and Verizon hotspots. Having two cellular carriers gives us the best opportunity to have quality Internet where one may work in the campground this week, but cell service in the next campground may be stronger for the other carrier. For great information about the ever changing cellular data plans and services, visit the great work supplied by Chris and Cherie at www.rvmobileinternet.com.
4. Process and Scheduling
Equally important is time management. Scheduling work time and play time is what makes the RV lifestyle so enjoyable. We share with many that we work a day then play a day. Having a remote job or operating a remote business, scheduling time is important for meeting your client or company needs as a well as having time to see the site surrounding this RV stop.
There are great project management tools to help with your day-to-day processes and time management. We have been using Google Calendar to layout weeks and months of work, travel and important events. With the administrative requirements of running a business, QuickBooks is essential to our bookkeeping and billing needs as well as that needed end of the year tool to close the books and head to the accountant for tax time.
K.I.S.S. isn’t my invention, but a carryover from my telecom engineering and operations day. Keep It Simple Stupid (I’m pointing my finger at myself!) is the effort of not making the work environment difficult. This is the effort of not adding processes, tools, technology, and software that isn’t critical to your daily deliverables. Sure the latest and greatest tech is cool to work with….maybe, but if it slows down or worse, breaks the work environment that’s need throughout the week, it’s best to test over time and become efficient in its operation before make a change.
6. Take Care of Yourself
Being outside of an office environment can be a curse and a blessing. Not having structure can cause one too work to many hours, never take breaks and the next thing you know is you’re burnt out for over work and not enjoying all the wonderful sites and experiences that RV life has to offer. Don’t get in the trap of working all hours of the day and night. Take those needed breaks. Schedule time well and set proper expectations to meet your client or company’s work deliverables.
The Bottom Line
Take breaks. Schedule time wisely. Pick the right technology to get the job done. Find the best Internet you can afford. Don’t forget to take quality time to experience the area where your RV is parked. And most of all enjoy RV life.
Not sure about what RV accessories you need as you start RV travel? Check out our RV Accessories page where we have listed a wide range of products from essential items to those “nice to have” RV products to make RV life more enjoyable. Every item listed is being used or has been used by Joan and I as we’ve traveled across the country in our RV.
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