How often do you find yourself staring at the wall clock in your office and thinking, “Another day, another dollar”? Every day it’s the same thing. You punch in; you punch out. It doesn’t matter how much effort you put in, your performance is subject to someone’s evaluation. You have no control over your career path or tenure. You are convinced that regardless of your contributions, your productivity will never be justly compensated. That is the problem with being micromanaged and why you should find jobs that let you work remotely.
To work remotely means to work outside the confines of the traditional office setting. People who work remotely are often referred to as home-based workers, freelancers, telecommuters or virtual assistants. The skills and job descriptions may vary but the nature of work remains the same; you work from a location that is your own choosing. You could be working in your own home or in a coffee shop.
Remote work is a growing phenomenon. More people are crossing over from a regular desk job to a home based job. The number of home based workers is increasing not only because of financial independence and job security. There is also a great demand for it in the market. Companies are looking to fill in workforce slots with home based workers because it lowers total compensation cost, lowers the incidence of turnover and increases productivity.
In the United States, it is estimated that 30% to 45% of the workforce work remotely. This number is projected to rise to 50% in 2020 and 62% in 2022.
Before you start looking for jobs that let you work remotely, the first thing you have to do is set yourself up for home-based work:
- Fix up a room in your home for home-based work.
- Invest in a good laptop or PC and hardware.
- Get a reliable Internet Service Provider.
Once these are in place, you can shift your focus on finding jobs that let you work remotely. And the best place is the Internet.
Many companies and businesses that are looking for remote workers put up job posts in online platforms or job communities. With the popularity of remote work, HR departments routinely use these online platforms to look for prospective candidates to manage specific tasks or work.
The Internet is rife with these online job platforms. But before you start applying, you have to create an online profile.
Recruiters and potential clients go through countless online profiles every day. These are the important details when creating an online profile:
- Complete Name
- Contact Details- e-mail, Skype ID (if allowed)
- Work Experience
- Educational Background
- Special Skills
- Referrals and Recommendations
- Job Portfolio, if available
- Updated Profile Picture
- Social Media Accounts, particularly LinkedIn address
The online profile you create should be the same for all the online job platforms that you will open user accounts at. Each online job platform will have different templates, formats or procedures for creating an online profile.
If you have various skill sets and competencies, you may wish to emphasize certain abilities in websites that cater to specific types of projects. The important thing to remember is that the details and information should be the same or at the very least identical.
Here are 10 of the best online job platforms to look for home based work:
1. FlexJobs. This platform offers a large variety of home based work that covers full-time to part-time, beginners to experienced workers. The best thing about FlexJobs is that they thoroughly screen all job posts and user profiles to eliminate scammers and bogus job offers.
2. We Work Remotely. If your core competencies are inclined toward IT, this is the job market for you. Although the site does offer opportunities for traditional outsourcing work such as customer support, majority of the companies that sign up for the service are from the IT industry.
3. Staff.com.. One of the few online job platforms that aim to provide its members with long-term career opportunities and not just short-term projects. All you need to do is to choose between 80 hours a month or part-time and 160 hours a month for full-time work. Staff.com will then match you up with prospective employers.
4. Virtual Vocations. This online job market was started by a work-at-home Mom and features traditional home based jobs such as technical writing and paralegal work.
5. TopTal Business. If you have background in consulting work, TopTal Business can connect you with large corporations for short-term but high impact projects. This online job platform connects you with clients with specialized needs that are aligned with your core competencies.
6. Fiverr. This is a site that offers high volume jobs that are priced only $5 per project. But do not think Fiverr cannot help you establish a stable career as a remote worker. There are stories of people who are earning more than $5,000 a month because of Fiverr.
7. Elance. One of the most popular online job platforms on the Internet. Elance boasts of having 8 million freelancers and 2 million clients in over 180 countries. Elance merged with O-Desk last December 2013 to form Elance-Upwork.
8. Freelancer. This site claims to have over 13 million users. Freelancer has a unique approach to applying for jobs and this is through a bidding system. In order to boost your chances of moving your bid up, the site will ask you to take online tests for a small fee.
9. Indeed. This has one of the largest sources of available jobs for remote workers. Indeed pulls data from various Internet sources to post available jobs on its community billboard. There are more than 2,000 jobs to choose from in a single run.
10. Monster. Another popular online job community billboard, Monster matches many remote workers with prospective clients. The online application can be very tedious with the user having to accomplish many pages. But Monster regularly alerts the user via e-mail of potential client interests or pending job offers.
When you receive an invitation to apply for a job or a strong offer from a client, you should always respond within 24 hours. Not only is it an act of professional courtesy, but the site may flag you for failure to give an immediate response.
It will take time to land a client. Thus, you should set aside time in the day to network in these online job platforms. For starters, choose only 3 from the list and target at least 3 job applications per day.
In a 22 day networking schedule, you would have sent 66 applications to various job posts. In order to land one client, you only need to achieve a qualifying rate of 1.5%. The odds should be in your favor.
Felix works with a company that provides virtual assistant services for small and medium sized businesses. He enjoys writing about businesses and career.