Years ago, did you ever think that you would be able to have a flourishing career without walking into an office? While many may not have seen it coming, many companies have embraced remote work. Much like Bill Gates conveyed years ago, companies who offer the perk of remote work will be able to attract high-quality talent and upgrade their reputations.
So, who all is hiring remotely? While there isn't an exact stat that conveys how many companies allow for remote work. Some show remote work is expanding among employers:
It's safe to say that more companies are offering remote work than they used to. So, why are they doing it? Here are some trends that could be the reason why many employers are now offering the option to work remotely:
Nathan and Connor, owners of Freeeup.com have expanded their team using freelancers, and it has proven to be critical to their success:
After years of hiring remotely with our first business and running into many frustrations, we decided there must be a better way, and we started FreeeUp. Today, we run FreeeUp.com full time. FreeeUp is a marketplace connecting virtual assistants, freelancers, and agencies with digital businesses in the eCommerce and marketing spaces. As I said above, we founded FreeeUp out of frustrations we were having with the other online hiring platforms. We wanted a more reliable way to find top talent remotely.
However, while the perks are there, some remote work companies are still trying to figure this new work arrangement out. For a variety of reasons, all remote work and work at home companies are not listing that they offer this as a perk. Here are a few ideas as to why this could be the case:
Whatever the reason, you are limiting your chances to find a remote work position by only keeping an eye on remote work job listing sites, and looking for jobs from well-known remote companies.
So, how can you find remote work jobs from companies that may not be well-known, or may not explicitly indicate it on the website? Take a look at the tips below:
Again, while you may be inclined to only stick to remote work companies you know of, there are benefits to looking a bit deeper to search out remote work arrangements with companies who may not explicitly state it on their website, or even during the interview.
Take a look at these advantages:
Shauna, the founder of Operate Remote, has found that many companies are not establishing a remote work strategy when they step into this arrangement:
A lot of companies fail to establish a strategy that's going to help them facilitate the creation and growth of their remote teams. Without a clear plan and processes in place, all types of issues can arise: poor performance, engagement, and communication problems, to name a few."
So, you could be a part of a team that helps to ease an emerging remote-friendly company into a more strategic and effective location-independent policy. However, always make sure that the company is open to remote work; you might not get very far stepping into a culture that does not embrace it or is not willing to.
So, how can you put yourself in the position to find remote jobs from these types of companies? Take a look below:
Right now, remote work is all the rage to talk about on social media. One search for #remotework or #remoteworking on Twitter will allow you to see a community of influencers, entrepreneurs, and employers who are remote work advocates. The last group is whom you are looking for. Take a look at companies who are tweeting about remote work, or sharing remote work positions. These may be the places you want to go after.
Chanell, a freelance writer, mentions how social media allowed her to take advantage of a variety of remote work-based opportunities:
"Use social media! I have stumbled onto a lot of opportunities while searching different hashtags on Twitter, joining Facebook remote work groups, and keeping an eye on LinkedIn job postings. Job boards are great, but social media can be an awesome resource in finding the next gig."
While the job description might not come right out and say it, there are some keywords you can look for within it. Does it mention anything about "telecommuting," or working with individuals from different time zones? Does it also discuss the use of programs like Salesforce, Slack, Trello, or Google Drive? While brick-and-mortar companies may also use these tools, they do provide an infrastructure that can support remote work. So, do a bit more research about the company and position.
Sometimes, it makes sense to go right to the source, and LinkedIn is going to be your friend here. See if you have any shared connections with individuals who work for a company you are interested in interacting with. LinkedIn is excellent for asking contacts to make introductions, so this will be the best platform to do this. You can also find staff emails and send over a brief message asking for an informational interview about the company.
The staff page can tell you a lot! So, be sure to stop by there when you get the chance. Many companies will list their team members, and will also add where they are currently located. If they are dispersed across the world, the chances are high that this company may offer remote work.
Gino, a business founder, discusses how his company began hiring remotely, and how his team went from mostly in-office to half-remote:
In 2015, we decided that we would start hiring remote team members based throughout the Americas and not just Lima. That's what got us started in remote hiring.
We started hiring great people in Argentina, Mexico, Chile, and all of a sudden; we had a company with half remote team members and half in-office team members."
Many smaller companies are following this model, and are transitioning into a remote work lifestyle. So be on the lookout for where the staff is working on team pages.
Since small businesses and startups typically have smaller teams and leaner processes, they are sometimes more open to offering flexible work arrangements. So, keep an eye on that startup on Angel List, or a small business you discovered on LinkedIn. They may offer remote work as a perk to attract high-quality candidates to stay competitive with larger companies.
Want to hear directly from an employee without getting in touch with one? Check out Glassdoor. The site allows former and current employees to review companies. Glassdoor will pick out common keywords that employees mention, so you may be able to find out if they support remote work from there. If not, take a minute to go through the reviews for more information.
The goal here is to find some companies that are less well known to improve your chances of landing a remote work job. However, you still may want to check some popular resources for some guidance on where to go. Sites like Flexjobs, Skillcrush, and even Forbes publish regular lists of top companies that offer remote work.
They are known to add new ones to the list, and some of the lists even include triple-digit numbers of companies. So, look beyond the potential Williams-Sonomas, Concentrix, Intuit, or Aetna, and go a bit further down the list. These resources can help you see if a company you are interested in is on there, or include a lesser-known company further down the list.
It is well known that:
Virtual assistants, customer support professionals, data entry professionals, transcriptionists, sales representatives, tech support, customer care, customer service representative, account managers, human resources, and software developers are all popular remote positions.
If the company has many positions in these categories, the chances are good that they may offer work from home opportunities.
There are in-house freelancers. However, more and more companies are open to the gig economy. Many independent contractors have flexible offsite work arrangements. So, if you see they are hiring independent contractors, this could be an indication that they are open to remote work or at the least, a flexible work arrangement.
In the job description, do they mention the need for strong internet connections? Then this could be another indication that they are offering remote work as a perk. So, use this as an indication to do some further research about the position and the company.
Use Google or any other preferred search engine to your advantage. Use it to search for the company with the keyword "remote work," "online jobs," "telecommute," or "work at home," and see what comes up. This search could lead you to some additional online reviews, as well as any verbiage that discusses whether the company allows telecommuting.
Keep an eye on positions in cities like Atlanta, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle, and other major tech hubs that are known to be popular for remote workers. If your preferred company is located in one of these cities, it could be offering remote part-time or full-time positions, or at least be open to it.
So, let's say that you have followed the steps above, and now you are entering the interview still a bit unsure if the company allows you to work remotely. The next section will outline some strategic questions that can help you to get a clearer picture of whether remote work is permitted.
It isn't the wisest decision during the interview process to outright ask if a company offers remote work. While your intentions may be innocent, companies may not always interpret a direct question about remote work in the right way, especially if they do not offer it. So, get a feel for whether they allow it or not by asking the below questions:
Leave the "I" out of It – During the preliminary interview, it is better to ask a general question relating to remote work. For example, "Does most of your staff work onsite, or do some or all telecommute?" This question will cross across as if you are asking for general curiosity.
Ask about time zones – Many times, remote work companies may have employees all over the world. So, asking if everyone is working in the same time zone is a smart way to tell if some employees work offsite.
Ask about the job's hours – If work hours are a strict 9-to-5, the chances are high that this may not be a remote work position, but if the company is more results-based, and isn't as concerned about actual start times, then it could be remote or open to it.
Companies like Appen, Humana, Kelly Services, LiveOps, Dell, Amazon, Hilton, VipKid, and others are well-known for their flexible remote work positions. However, they–and their counterparts—are not the only companies offering this perk.
Many smaller and less well-known companies are open to offering work at home positions, even if they do not explicitly mention it on their website. The key to finding out who these companies are is by doing research and asking the right questions. You can also reach out to current and former employees for insight.
However, regardless of what you do, be sure to confirm that these jobs are legitimate work positions, and use your best judgment when asking questions or reaching out to former or current employees.
Lastly, if remote work is a non-negotiable work arrangement for you, and it allows you to do your best work, don't settle for anything less. Feel inspired to pursue the right position that works for you.
We here at Remote Habits, wish you the best of luck!
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