Finding a Remote Job That Suits You – A Few Tips & Tricks

No one can deny that finding work is hard.

When certain requirements come into play, finding a remote job that suits you is even harder. This is thanks to the fiercely competitive nature of application processes. There are a lot of people out there who want to work remotely – and not enough of them. It means you’ll get hundreds (if not thousands) of applications for one single position.

For many of us, it can be incredibly disheartening. You spend all of that time on an application. In return, the best most can hope for is an automated email.

But there’s no point in focusing on how difficult it is, or getting negative. If it’s something you really want, then it IS possible. That’s why we’ve compiled a few of the best tips, tricks and hacks that can help you land the telecommute job of your dreams.

Keep in mind that finding a work from home position takes a lot of guts and persistence. Not only that, you need to find a telecommute position that you actually want to do. And that puts food on the table. There’s no use getting a customer service job you hate, just because they’ll let you work from your couch. If you hate talking to people all day, you’ll still be miserable!

Good to Know!
It’s probably not a good idea to push “working remotely” as your main agenda in a job search. Quite frankly, most companies don’t care. Even if an organization advertises themselves as remote, keep talk of “remote work” down to a minimum and focus on what you can bring to the table. What these organizations want to know is that you’re the right fit. If you have experience working remotely in the past, by all means mention it: but in the right context.

Putting telecommuting aside for a moment, let’s focus on something equally as important: finding a role you actually want to do. For some people, this may very well mean taking the time to learn a few extra new skills. For others, it may simply mean retraining as something else. The good news is that this is much easier than it ever was in the past. There are plenty of online courses available to help you make it happen!

Beyond learning new skills, don’t forget about the following points:

First things first: Finding a remote job also means being conscious of time zones

Finding a remote job first means understanding the right job role for you. Essentially, shouldn’t only know what type of work you want to do. You also need to understand how you work best. More specifically, think time zones.

Consider…

  • Are you an early bird? Do you like being up at seven, and finished before three so that you’ve got the rest of the day to spare?
  • Or do you prefer slow mornings, starting late and finishing at seven or eight in the evening?
  • Perhaps you work best in shifts: a long break in the afternoon, starting again in the evening and then working late into the night?
  • Or perhaps you’re not a total routine freak – and prefer to start and finish at different times of the day.

Timezones are a particularly important thing to consider when you work in a distributed team. Even two or three hours’ difference can mean juggling a few things. Sometimes, a job that may seem otherwise perfect could require you to work a few antisocial hours. Remote companies tend to be prepared for this, though and often don’t expect employees to spend all their evenings working.

That being said, it’s something you’ll need to find out early on and make sure you’re comfortable with it.

Your resume is one key to finding a remote job

Finding a remote job, or even a conventional one for that matter, means taking a look at your CV/resume and doing a bit of revision. In fact, it amazing how many job seeker’s don’t pay enough attention to their resumes.

A resume should always be kept up to date… Even if you’re not currently looking for a job!

Anyone serious about finding a high-paying remote position needs to seriously look at their resume and polish it up. And it needs to be damn impeccable. Really, really damn impeccable. Simply because…

…you’re competing with talent from all over the world.

We can’t stress this enough. You’re absolutely not the only person trying to find a remote job. Not by a long shot.

Cover letters are still important

I can’t say I’m the biggest fan of cover letters. At the very least, long-winded ones that go into depth just seem to be a waste of time. I don’t want to spend an hour writing a letter that waxes lyrical about my work history when I actually know very little about a company. That being said, some places demand them so it’s best to follow suit.

In addition, communication skills will be really important in whatever your next remote role is. Which is why a cover letter can be a great way of highlighting these skills when looking for remote jobs: in your introduction, you can very clearly show off your written communication skills. This obviously won’t be the only thing but it is the best way to introduce yourself (and possibly stand out among hundreds of other applicants).

Finding a remote job takes time. Sometimes, a lot of time. But it also takes a bit of effort and strategic thinking. Don’t forget to look in the right places, and also see if there are positions where you may be able to ask for a remote set up… even if it’s not formally mentioned in the job description.

Digital Nomad, Remote Worker… You NEED These Tools!

Digital nomadism and remote working would simply not be possible without the sophisticated tools that everyone carries around in their pockets these days. You cannot work for a company from home without a computer – or even Internet. Hustling for new clients and jobs while on the go as a digital nomad is also impossible, unless you have access to the countless freelancer platforms out there.

But just what are the main tools that digital nomads and remote workers need?

Surprisingly, you can be as minimalistic as you like. You can have as many or as few of them as you want… As long as you get the job done!

Side note: I didn’t use a smartphone for YEARS. And it was perfectly fine.

The Bare Essentials for digital nomads and remote workers

A Good Laptop

It goes without saying, really, but a laptop is essential. Of course, if you’re the kind of remote worker who primarily works from a home office – you can easily get by with a desktop. But if you’re a digital nomad or a remote worker who’s fond of changing their physical surroundings regularly… You need a laptop that’s not only reliable, but that can also take a beating.

A Decent Internet Connection

You’ve got to make sure that your Internet connection is fast and reliable… Especially if most (or all) of your meetings are held remotely. AND – you should have an emergency backup. I would suggest getting a good data plan (you can scout for deals… though it may take a bit of time).

A Smartphone

For the first few years of my remote career, I eschewed smartphones and preferred to do my work ONLY when I was at the computer. These days, they’re pretty much essential: you can access work files and communicate from anywhere. Running late and won’t be in a meeting? You can keep up communication with a quick message.

And even if you use it for nothing else… Smartphones are simply miniature, mobile routers that can help you setup a quick hotspot if you’re caught somewhere without wi-fi. Sorted!

VPNs, or virtual private networks

There are plenty of ads online trying to sell different VPNs… Some of them are good, others not so much. Not only do they encrypt your data, but they also give you full access to the Internet. What? That’s right: your Internet access is restricted based on your location. If you live in the UK and use Google, your search results will be tailored to Britain. For digital marketers (especially SEOs), a VPN has become essential.

For everyone else… It just makes sense to encrypt your data as much as possible.

The Challenge of Finding Legitimate Work from Home Jobs

‘Work from home’ jobs sounded very much like a scam in the olden days. The desire to work remotely still, unfortunately, causes some people to fall into the trap of remote job scams.

You’ll find lots of information on these scams. I’ve already written about how to avoid them.

But what about the challenging of finding legitimate work from home jobs?

Actual remote jobs require just as much work to find as regular, in-office positions.

Finding anything remote means taking the approach of a standard employee: unless you choose to freelance. Whether you’re a freelancer or looking for full-time employment, marketing yourself is still really, really important.

If you feel unsure about how to do this, then the answer is simple: research! That’s how people learn new things… Expertise doesn’t just appear like magic.

Finding legitimate work from home jobs means knowing your industry

It’s true: you need to understand your industry well. If you work in digital marketing then you’re aware of how diverse and fast-paced it can be. For many in the industry, this is a huge advantage: you can use your current skills and expertise and reinvent your ‘professional persona’.

If you’re an account, it may be a little different. You probably have to have certain qualifications depending on the job you want. The same can be said for the level of pay. Legitimate work from home jobs are in a lot of ‘white collar’ fields nowadays – really make sure you understand yours!

Remote, freelance and regular job boards are your friend

People have definitely found telecommute positions through the likes of Craigslist and other social media sites… However, these are often places scammers target the most. Sticking to more ‘official’ job boards is definitely a good idea. Nowadays there are countless job sites that focus specifically on remote jobs… Full-time, part-time and contractor gigs can also be found on freelancer platforms. So don’t rule those out.

And what about standard job boards?

Platforms like Indeed.com actually have countless remote jobs available… You just have to look a little harder. When searching, type in keywords like ‘home-based’, ‘telecommute’, ‘remote’, etc… If a job stands out but doesn’t specify, then it’s worth asking at some stage of the interview process.

If you’re really unsure, do the research

It’s definitely worth researching the company if you’re unsure of anything. Look at their website, see if they have an actual phone number, street address etc… Take a look at their social media pages as well.  What do they get up to? Some con artists are great at pulling very elaborate scams… You need to be one step ahead of them in the research department.

Conclusion

Getting a legitimate work from home job takes work… Lot of work. That’s not to say you won’t easily land one: sometimes people are just lucky. Unfortunately the online world has allowed a lot of people to come up with news ways of tricking others out of money. One final piece of advice I will repeat is this: Never, ever, EVER send someone money. They should be paying you, not the other way around!