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Carbonite Survey Lists Work-Life Challenges for Home-Based Businesses

[ 0 ] Apr. 29, 2013 | SBO Editor

Majority of Small Office, Home Office Owners Skip Five Personal Obligations a Month; 79 Percent Admit that They Aren’t Taking Full Advantage of the Cloud

Owning a business is stressful, but running a business from home brings additional challenges, according to a new survey by Wakefield Research for Carbonite, Inc. (NASDAQ: CARB), a leading provider of cloud backup solutions. The study found that while home-based small business owners are concerned about data loss and struggle to find a proper work/life balance, a majority (79 percent) aren’t taking full advantage of cloud-based business tools.

“Running a business out of your house usually means insufficient IT support and a blurry line distinguishing when you ‘go home for the day,’” said Pete Lamson, SVP Cloud Backup at Carbonite. “Nearly half (45 percent) of home-based business owners feel it’s more stressful working for themselves, which is why solutions that are easy to use and set-it-and-forget-it are especially important for these small businesses.”

Work-life balance doesn’t exist under one roof

Small business owners working from home often find separating personal life from professional life a challenge, as they strive to manage everything from time constraints to data loss. Carbonite’s survey revealed that:

  • Fifty-six percent of home-based business owners will forgo personal commitments like happy hour, a child’s recital or workout to finish work projects. On average, home-based business owners skip five personal commitments per month.
  • To get work done, a majority (78 percent) say they have a place to “hide” to avoid distractions. The most common places are their bedroom (45 percent), yard (16 percent), basement (15 percent), bathroom (13 percent) or garage (12 percent).
  • Work often leads to arguments between a home-based business owner and their significant other. The top three reasons couples argue are: work cluttering other parts of the house (32 percent), working late takes away from family time (31 percent) and the inability to separate personal life from professional life (30 percent).
  • Forty-five percent of parents who work from home have experienced data loss because someone in their home used their work computer.

White lies are as common as white rice

More than half (54 percent) of home-based business owners have missed a business opportunity or had to redo a project because of a lost or deleted file. To cover up a technical glitch, 41 percent have told a “white lie” to someone they do business with, such as a colleague, client or vendor. The most common fibs include a computer or internet crash/malfunction (20 percent), blaming someone else (11 percent) and faking an illness, emergency or accident (9 percent).

Opportunity Lost:  Most home-based businesses miss out on cloud’s advantages

When asked, 46 percent of home-based business owners say they don’t use cloud-based tools at work. However, confusion about cloud services still exists, as the survey found that nearly all (94 percent) home-based business owners are indeed using cloud services. Regardless of whether they realize they are using the cloud or not, 79 percent admit that they aren’t taking full advantage of the cloud in their business, which means they are missing out on the business benefits that 97 percent of admitted cloud users experience. These benefits include:

  • Saving time (70 percent);
  • Helping them run their business more smoothly (66 percent);
  • Allowing them to use technology previously unavailable to small businesses (52 percent);
  • Saving them money (47 percent); and
  • Making their business appear larger or more established than it is (31 percent).

More information and resources on how small businesses can take full advantage of the cloud, increase business productivity and streamline business operations, is available on Carbonite’s Small Business Hub at smallbiz.carbonite.com. Additional Resources:

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Category: Features