How to Find Legitimate Remote Work Opportunities
For years, people have been searching online for a way to work from home. In the past this typically resulted in a lot of bogus remote jobs such as the infamous job offer to fill out endless online surveys for pennies. Sound familiar? But remote work is on the rise; according to the State of the Remote Job Marketplace report from FlexJobs, an estimated 3.9 million Americans work from home at least half the time. There are also a ton of work-from-home jobs you can land that are not only legitimate but pay well too.
You still have to watch out for scams, though. According to the same report from FlexJobs, 60 to 70 scams exist for every one legitimate work-from-home job. So, how do you find a real remote job online?
Follow these steps.
Use a remote work job site.
If you’re looking for legitimate remote work on Craigslist and Kijiji, you’re not going to find it. Although you can find some legitimate remote opportunities on these sites, you’ll spend hours and come across a number of scams as well. Instead, use a job site that’s specifically geared toward remote work.That way, you’ll get instant access to numerous real remote job listings.
But, with any site, still be wary of fakes. Because there are a number of signs that a remote job is a scam, here are a few that you should watch out for:
You’re asked for personal information right way. When you apply to a remote job and are asked for personal information right away such as your social security number, your bank account, phone number and address and date of birth -- steer clear.
Shady email addresses. If the contact email address is a personal email one like firstname.lastname@example.org or replicates a known email address like email@example.com, consider this a good sign of a scam.
Spelling and grammatical errors. A job post riddled with spelling and grammatical errors is a bad sign.
You’re offered a job on the spot. If you’re offered a job on the spot without being asked about your experience or references, it’s probably not legitimate.
Pay is too high If the pay seems too high for the amount of work involved, you’re probably being lured into a scam.
Use trusted remote work job sites and know what to look out for.
Take advantage of Google’s new job search features.
If you’re on the hunt for a legitimate work-from-home job, you’re in luck because Google recently introduced a new feature that can help. Typically, when you search on Google for "work-from-home jobs" or "remote work," the results turn up multiple scams and fake job postings. But Google has added more features to make it easier to find legitimate remote positions.
For instance, you can search Google for a query such as "customer service jobs" and set the location to "work from home" in order to find real telecommuting and remote jobs.
Image Source: Google
To find these remote jobs, Google looks at the standard Schema.org markup that most job sites use to push their job listings to Google Jobs. Looking at this data helps Google filter out job listings that aren’t relevant. The search engine is already working with a number of companies that have adopted the markup, such as Working Nomads, We Work Remotely and ZipRecruiter, but more should be joining in the future.
Do your research and know the company.
With any job search, you need to research the company but this is especially important for looking for remote work. Doing your research and knowing the company will help you avoid making a decision you’ll regret.
First, know the difference between partial and fully distributed remote teams. A fully distributed remote team already knows how to handle remote workers and has an efficient onboarding process, to make sure you’ll be able to perform to the best of your ability.
A partially remote team, in contrast, might not yet have mastered the art of remote work. When you join a team that doesn’t have a lot of experience with remote work or has never had a remote employee before, you may run into issues. So, make sure the company that’s offering you a work-from-home position knows what it's doing.
Next, do some general research. Check out the company’s website and social media, and search out its employees on LinkedIn and so on. If the company doesn't have an online presence or its website looks suspect, it probably won’t be a company that you want to work for.
Over to you.
Working from home offers a lot of perks, whether you want a remote job so you can spend more time with your kids -- or you just want to escape that dreaded commute. Luckily, finding legitimate remote jobs isn’t like searching for a needle in a haystack anymore. With these tips, you may well find the remote job of your dreams.