Recent grads finding jobs - in their living rooms

octavia_silva.top.jpgOctavia Silva in the home office/kitchen/living room of her Brooklyn, NY apartment. By Jessica Dickler, staff writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Each morning 26-year old Octavia Silva gets up, showers, puts on her business clothes, does her make up, and then starts her workday as an administrative assistant -- from a table in her living room.

Silva answers phones and does other tasks for Surprise Industries, a company that plans oddball surprise presents, anything from a DJing class to flight school. She allows herself 30 minutes for lunch and ends her day promptly at 6 p.m.

"I give myself those limits so it would be like working in a real office," Silva said.

She's one of a growing number of young professionals choosing to work from home as telecommuting opportunities have jumped nearly 400% in the past three years, according to job-search site FlexJobs.com.

"[We are] receiving many more calls and inquiries from younger job seekers interested in telecommuting and flexible jobs," said FlexJobs CEO Sara Sutton Fell.

In fact, she added, the number of young job seekers using FlexJobs to find these kinds of positions increased 181% during the past three years.

"They really like it because it sits with the work/life balance that the younger generations really care about," said Melanie Holmes, a vice president at employment services firm Manpower. "My generation started out as workaholics, this generation is not like that."

It also works for many entrepreneurs, who are staffing their firms virtually. Jack Goldberg, president of online marketing firm BirdDog Media, says most of his employees are between the ages of 24 and 28, and all of them work from home. In fact, there is no main office at all.

Goldberg loves running a business out of his house -- especially greeting his daughter when she comes home from school -- and believes that although some employees get lonely home alone, most appreciate the freedom and flexibility.

That describes Zach Welch, 25, who works entirely out of his one-bedroom apartment in Seattle. He's a program developer for BrainGlue, a Menlo Park, Calif.-based marketing agency focused on social networking.

"My desk is in my bedroom so I roll out of bed and get going." Welch said.

He loves the flexible schedule that comes with working from home, which allows him time to ski on the occasional weekday afternoon. But he also struggles with being alienated from his peers. "I am an extrovert by nature and I miss the social aspect," he admitted.

And that, in general, can be a downside to these types of positions. "They don't have the depth of relationships," said Doug Arms, senior vice president of recruiting firm Adecco. "There's a certain value to face to face interaction."

Arms believes that sharing an office can offer a career boost, as well as psychological one. He even contends that's what has helped him in his own professional experience. "There have been times when I've been outperformed by others, but the relationships I was able to develop propelled my career."

Arms recommends making room for some face time with managers and other coworkers at least once a week to develop a personal connection. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed4.32%4.27%
15 yr fixed3.29%3.27%
5/1 ARM3.34%3.47%
30 yr refi4.29%4.24%
15 yr refi3.26%3.25%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,960.57 -123.23 -0.72%
Nasdaq 4,449.56 -22.55 -0.50%
S&P 500 1,978.34 -9.64 -0.48%
Treasuries 2.47 -0.04 -1.59%
Data as of 7:10pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Facebook Inc 75.19 0.21 0.28%
Apple Inc 97.67 0.64 0.66%
Bank of America Corp... 15.59 -0.03 -0.19%
Ford Motor Co 17.62 -0.22 -1.23%
Applied Materials In... 21.23 -0.52 -2.41%
Data as of 4:03pm ET

Sections

The rideshare app will launch in New York on Friday evening, as the city's taxi commission comes to terms with the technology. More

A parody from Funny or Die features Kristin Bell as Mary Poppins, who refused to work for $7.25 an hour. More

Louisiana is now the top location for motion picture filming, supporting thousands of new jobs and small businesses. More

Managing other people is harder than it looks. While many bosses are well intentioned, most don't make the grade as truly great because they overlook some basic requirements in their interactions with employees and others in their company. More

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.