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Friday, January 13, 2012

Is Arise.com A Scam?





If you've been in this industry long enough, you've probably 
heard that any work at home opportunity that requires a fee 
is a scam. I know it was something that was pumped to me 
many times over on various sites. The intentions behind 
this piece of advice is good. But today I'm going to turn it 
on it's head. Because the folks that have given you this 
advice are guilty of some "Simple Simon" behavior. 
This basically means they're over simplifying advice that 
should be prefaced with certain exclusions. This is going 
to make a lot more sense as your read this review of 
Arise.com so sit tight if you're interested in another 
legitimate business opportunity outside of affiliate 
marketing.  If you have any work experience in 
Customer Service, Tech Support or Sales, you'll want 
to read this review in detail. 
 

What is Arise.com?

 
In a nutshell it's a full fledged business opportunity NOT 
a job! This is a very important distinction that we will get 
into further which seems to be a sore spot for the 
uninformed. In any event, Arise.com is a BBB A+ rated 
home business, where you can partner with Arise.com as 
a Customer Service, Tech Support or Sales Rep. But like 
most work at home companies you're an 
independent contractor (IC) NOT an employee. Now 
don't go running away! As I said before 99.9% of work at 
home companies work with people as ICs not employees. 
Do you know someone that is an affiliate marketer, or selling 
Avon, Amway or Tupperware? Well guess what? They are 
independent contractors. Those folks own their own business, 
will have a home office, do the legal stuff to make IRS happy, 
and make sure they have taken any training needed to do the 
work, often on their own dollar.
 
 

So how does this all work?

 
Simple– you become trained to be part of a store's telephone, 
online chat or email support team. Your work may range from 
answering emails or you might be one of the people answering 
the 800 number for customer support. Yep many of those folks 
are most likely sitting at home in their PJs, talking to you as an 
Independent Contractor for Arise.com or as they like to call their 
workers, Arise Certified Professional(ACP). Don't even ask me 
why they thought of this name. Personally I think it causes more 
confusion but I'm a bit slow to begin with so you have to take my 
opinion with a grain of salt. I'm just reporting my findings.
 
In any event, Arise.com is basically a middle man. An online 
store may need 24 hour customer service via telephone, online 
chat or email. Arise.com basically has an online database of 
approved ACP members, organized by background and training 
qualifications that the online retailer can contact for work.  Arise 
will take care of screening, training and paying these independent 
contractors so that the online retailer can focus on their business 
which is to sell stuff and not worry about HR headaches.
 
If you've ever work for a staffing agency, it's very similar except 
that you're not an employee and are responsible for paying for 
your home office and business set up. Arise is responsible for 
training you and getting you work with their clients. So you do 
not actually work "for" Arise.com. You work for yourself and 
contract your skills to these online retail businesses. Arise.com 
is just the middle man, or a partner, with the technical software, 
to make it all happen. So it's basically a win win for all and totally 
virtual which is why it's called Arise Virtual Solutions. Are you still 
with me?
 

How do you make money with 

Arise.com?

 
Once you set up your home office, take their training, and are in the 
Arise.com database for companies to find, you are ready to accept 
work offers. As you take further specialized training, (often required 
by the retail business hiring you) you then become eligible for even 
more jobs and higher pay. You specify which hours you are willing 
to work each day. When you are accepted by one of the companies, 
you agree to be ready to go, and online during the contracted hours. 
Then you basically do your customer service, tech support or sales 
duty as you were trained and paid the agreed salary per hour. What 
happens to most people is that they develop a couple areas of 
specialty, like tax software or roadside assistance, and may end up
working exclusively for two or three companies. If you get bored, 
move to a different field, like webhosting, or a chain store! But you 
have to pay to be trained for the new company which is explained 
later in this article.
 

What is the pay scale?

 
Your pay is based on the number of productive minutes you actually 
are online and interacting with the customers. Arise.com has 
patented software that takes care of all of that. In general it works 
out to be about $10-14 per hour. Expect to begin at $10 and build up 
as you take additional training. Many companies provide added 
incentives for productivity, 3rd shift (overnight) hours, and for 
working during their peak times. Arise.com has nothing to do with 
that, that part is totally up to the hiring company.  You can use this 
as a guide: 25 hours a week/$10 hour is $250 a week, $1000/month. 
 
Oh, and by the way, Arise.com software can tell if you are actually 
talking to someone, or just sitting there with an open line trying to 
rack up minutes.  There are a few other tricks they are on to as well, 
so just do the job, don't try to milk them, chance are they will catch 
on quickly.
 
Another thing you should be aware of is that since you are an 
independent contractor you're responsible for paying Uncle Sam his 
taxes at the end of the year! So you'll need to put aside money for that. 
A tax professional can help you figure all that out. You may want to 
read my Work At Home Taxes article about how this all works since 
a large number of legitimate work at home opportunities use 
independent contractors. 
 

How often do you get paid?

 
Thankfully, there is not a "minimum" requirement for payment, 
which is a good thing. They send out payments twice a month by 
Direct Deposit straight to a bank account you set up specifically 
for this business.
 

Is this available for people living 

overseas?

 
Although the retail companies my be global in nature, Arise.com 
partnerships are available only to legal residents of the United States 
and in the United Kingdom/Ireland. Pretty much every one else is out 
of luck. Sorry guys. It's not my policy, I'm just relaying the facts.
 

Arise.com is a good home based 

business because…

 
Flexibility. Obviously most people want to work at home because the 
like the freedom of being home with their families. So making your own 
hours is a real plus. Depending on the online retailer, their work load will 
fit into anyone's schedule whether they look for full time hours, or a few 
hours in the evening or on the weekends. This is huge for a lot of stay at 
home moms that are qualified to do customer service work but may not 
be able to work during the daylight hours when the little ones are running 
amuck around the house.  By the way, let's say you move to an entirely 
different state. You can continue working for whichever companies you 
contract with. They do not care where you live, just that you have a phone 
and high speed internet access.
 
Online training provided. They designed the initial customer support 
training themselves, and you get it from their site. I have seen places 
where they tell you you have to be trained, but not where to get it!
 
Security. As long as companies do business online, there will always 
be a need for an online support team. Any given retailer that offers 24/7 
support will need multiple people working during each shift. In other words, 
this is not a hit and miss fad thing like members only jackets. You have 
some security especially because you're the boss not an employee.
 
It's legitimate. So many home based businesses are about pushing 
products you don't believe in or trust. (Yes even in affiliate marketing.) 
Sometimes many of these companies have poor ratings with consumer 
protection agencies. Arise.com has a BBB A+ rating, VeriSign PCI Data 
Security Standards met four years in a row, two software patents and 
awards from: Telework Coalition Hall of Fame; CallCenter Magazine 
Product of the Year; Presidential Task Force on Employment of Adults 
with Disabilities; Smithsonian Institute's Technological Achievement 
Award for Innovative Technology. They have also been featured in many 
media reports as a legit company to work with. For a lot of people this 
type of stuff is important. It gives folks a sense of security that you won't 
get screwed over. Personally I take all that stuff with a grain of salt. I tend 
to focus more on real people that have actually worked with the company 
to make my decisions. But to each their own. 
 

Cons

 
Confusing website. I don't know, it may be me, but it took me awhile to 
figure out what this was all about when reading their website. I think they
could have simplified it a bit by maybe having a video walking through 
how this all works for the work at home seeker's point of view.  I found 
the best info about their opportunity in the Work At Home Tab and FAQ 
section which I guess makes sense!  But even when I did find it, I really 
thought they could do a better job of explaining their opportunity in plain 
human being English. 
 
Technical Difficulties. Another thing that stands out to me is technology 
issues.The arise system don't support all browsers like Chrome or 
Firefox. Also, they have not updated their software, so it does not work 
with Windows Vista or Windows 7. Only versions of Windows 2000 XP 
are listed on the site. In addition there are only eight anti-virus systems 
that the software supports and you have to have one of them. So this 
may hinder some folks that are perfectly qualified to do the work from 
joining. You're also going to need to install a landline, as the award 
winning patented phone system does not work on cell phones. Virtual 
cell phone online support? Not in the cards.
 
Fees. This is probably the biggest complaints for most people. I 
blame this on the over simplified advice provided by other work at home 
websites and the media. They've pumped that any work at home related 
opportunity that requires a fee is a scam. What they've failed to do is 
clarify the exclusions. For instance when was the last time you heard that 
you could start your own McDonald's without any money? I mean how are 
you suppose to lease the store, buy the food, supplies, etc.? Well a home 
business works the same way. The only major difference is your start up 
costs tends to be less because you're using your home and probably your 
personal computer to get started. But you still have to invest in other 
supplies to get your business off the ground.
 
Well Arise.com is a home based business NOT a job. Unfortunately most 
of the people that are complaining about the fees don't understand the big 
difference. The real advice that everyone should follow is don't pay for a job. 
Although even that advice is flawed because we've all done it when you 
bought a newspaper to find a job, paid someone to write a resume, use the 
internet you pay for to find a job, etc. But in generally if on the offline world 
you wouldn't pay someone to work for them at a job, you shouldn't do it online. 
But it's perfectly reasonable to invest money in a legitimate home based 
business, business and or career training provided you've done the research. 
See my scam video on how to do research effectively. Now that you have 
been educated about fees regarding work at home, it's still worth itemizing 
what your initial start up cost will be to run your business in partnership with 
Arise.com. Because at the end of the day, even if they are legitimate, it may 
still be too rich for your blood and that's still a con for some people. So let's 
itemize the start up cost below.
 
1. Home Office set up. The initial costs for the home office would be the 
computer which I assume you will already have, high speed Internet 
connection which you may or may not have and anti-virus software. 
Dial up connections just don't work for this. High speed runs around $50 a 
month, but you are probably already paying something for the Internet service 
you have. And folks, it has to be your own Internet address, no going to the 
library to do this!
 
2. Phone equipment. A real landline phone, and headphones. It might be 
around $100 if you do not already have a land line phone to use.
 
3. Phone lines. They want it to be a separate line from your household line. 
Reality check here, for this business this only makes sense, they can't have 
busy signals because Ray-Ray & them are on the other line. 
 
4. A National Background Check ($10.95-$23.95) depends on which state 
you live in. Now honestly? This is for your own good. In this day and age, I 
personally would question any business like this that did not screen their 
independent contractors. Think about when you make a purchase via 
telephone to a customer service rep. Don't you want to be sure this person 
isn't guilty of identity theft or some other crimes where they can misuse your 
personal information. 
 
5. Legal Stuff. You have to set up a registered corporation or L.L.C account 
which is about $100 depending on your state. This again is for your own 
good and helps keep IRS happy. You can choose to get liability insurance.  
All of this my friends is between you and your financial advisors. Trust me 
it's better to set up a corporation because it helps with your tax burden. The 
initial cost is saved many times over during the course of your business 
because you would have been taxed like an employee and the government 
pretty much screws employees in taxes. They're a lot friendly to businesses 
even if you're a small one. So in the long run, it's a actually a pro, not a con. 
 
6. Training Fees. Initial training 101 in virtual phone support is $99 and you 
take that through Arise.com. It takes a few weeks to complete. Additional 
training is usually required and that is not always made abundantly clear on 
the website. Each company will want you well versed in their product, but 
many will make you pay to get the additional training. This can definitely add 
up.  
 
7. Arise Fees. There is a semi monthly service fee that Arise collects to 
cover their 24/7 technical support and automated software programs used 
to obtain jobs, track your minutes, and get paid. $20 twice a month. 

 

So Is Arise a Scam?

 
Personally I don't think Arise.com is a scam at all. Like any company, 
it may have some flaws. From where I stand, the biggest complaints 
regarding this company has always been the fees. In my humble opinion, 
these complaints are not totally justified. The fact that there are start up 
costs does not mean automatic red flags. As we discussed earlier there 
has been some oversimplified advice given about work at home and fees. 
There is obviously good intentions in this advice because there are so 
many shady products out there being misrepresented as jobs. But it 
doesn't justify overgeneralizing certain pieces of advice. Most of this 
advice is written online. How difficult is it to add a few more words 
explaining the exceptions to the rule? I just did it several times here in 
this article. So it's not that difficult!
 
 
At the end of the day, even with the start up fees being justified, let's 
face the facts. Most people looking to work at home don't have extra 
money to spend. But if you just think for a moment about the colleges, 
community colleges, classes, workshops, and internships to train for 
a specific skill, and how they are full of people paying to get trained, it's 
a normal part of life in terms of career and business advancements. I 
don't know about ya'll, but I prefer that my little princess's teachers 
have some kind of degree… and my plumber is certified…my 
accountant can add, and my taxi driver has a license… even the NYC 
cab drivers.. lol Enough said?
 
Look, working with Arise.com means you become a home based business; 
they do not give you a job, which they're very upfront about. So the 
complaints of the fees and cost of training are a moot point. If they claimed 
to be a job, that would be a whole other situation. But they're very upfront that 
you're working as a business partner with them not an employee. If that's not 
what you're looking for then obviously Arise.com isn't a good fit for you. But if 
you truly want to be your own boss and start your own business, and learn 
understand the concept of running a business, then Arise.com is worthy of 
your consideration. Again, I don't think Arise.com is a scam. I just think people 
are misinformed about the difference between a work at home job and a 
home based business. Hopefully after reading this article and my meager 
attempt at teaching Home Based Business Model, Eddy Style, you're clear 
about the distinction. That being said, the same advice I preach still applies. 
"Do your research." Just because a company is honest enough to tell you 
they're offering a home based business doesn't mean they have a legit 
business. Never forget that due diligence is still required!
 
With that all said, I would highly recommend Arise.com for those that can 
absorb the start up cost of running your own full fledged home based business.
One problem and it's usually the biggest one, with a new business is finding 
customers, or traffic. But partnering with Arise.com solves this issue. So, it's 
definitely a win win in my mind, if a full fledged home business is what you're 
looking for. Good luck. If you've worked with Arise or considered it, let me know 
your thoughts about the company below. 

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