How to Find Remote Jobs So You Can Finally Ditch Your Commute and Cubicle
Leaving the daily grind for a virtual position could become your best career move yet. This easy 7-step plan will teach you how to find remote jobs like a pro.
Do you know how to find remote jobs?
If you've been treating a virtual job search the same way as landing a traditional in-office position, you may be tripping over your own feet.
Finding the right remote job takes a few specific tweaks to get right -- especially if it's your first time applying for telecommuting work.
How to Find Remote Jobs Like You've Done It Before
Use this guide on how to find remote jobs and you'll be one step closer to not hating your work life:
First, Decide What You're Really Looking For
Before you apply for remote work, you need a plan of attack for the job hunting process.
If you start browsing giant job sites, you'll be overwhelmed by all your options. And the process will waste a lot more time.
So narrow down a few filters and keywords to uncover the perfect job for you, such as:
- How many hours you want to work
- What type of company you want to work for
- Job titles or roles you have experience with
- Jobs or positions you'd be interested in
- Education, skills, and certifications you have
Make a list of keywords to describe your answers, and the types of jobs you're looking for, and keep it handy.
Use the Right Keywords
Companies use different words to describe the remote workers they're hiring.
So one smart trick is to use your normal job title for the search (such as Engineer or Marketer) and then add a remote keyword, such as:
- Work from home / work-at-home
- Completely distributed or 100% distributed (which means a company doesn't have a main office and all employees work remotely)
Search results like Remote Engineer, Virtual Digital Marketer, WordPress Developer (Telecommute) will then soon pop up and make life easy for you.
The likelihood of finding the job you're chasing also increases when you use the right job site.
Browse the Best Remote Job Sites
Major job boards like LinkedIn, Monster, and Indeed aren't focused on remote jobs. You'll have to waste time weeding through hundreds of in-office positions just to find the one or two remote jobs on there.
Work at home jobs found on Craigslist and Facebook are no better; they're more likely of being total scams.
That's why you need to get in the habit of browsing employment sites just for remote work opportunities.
With virtual jobs from all over the world, sites like We Work Remotely connect you with established companies and new startups -- and none of them require you commute to a specific zip code.
Break out your list of keywords from the previous step and you'll be able to pinpoint what you want in no time.
And you can even have the We Work Remotely robots email you new remote job listings in your field every day so you don't have to go through all this legwork each time.
But you will need to put some work in to update your resume and cover letter for all the jobs you find and want.
Update Your Resume and Cover Letter to Reflect What Remote Employers Are Looking For
Stats show 98% of job applicants get eliminated at the initial resume screening phase. And that means only the top 2% of candidates move on for an interview[*].
One of the biggest reasons for this bummer is because most candidates don't take the time to decode remote job keywords.
When you literally copy and paste the keywords used in the job ad -- which explicitly state what the company is looking for -- it shows hiring managers, decision makers, and resume parsing software you have what it takes.
You should always have an updated resume on hand so you only have to make minor tweaks when you want to send one out to companies you're interested in.
This involves not only describing your education, past positions, and career objectives like a standard resume, but also specific skills and traits relative to remote work demands.
Since there's very minimal training during the onboarding process, your resume and cover letter will need to convince someone you're ready to hit the ground running as soon as you're hired.
So you'll want to play up specific remote work abilities such as your:
- Prior telecommuting history. If it's not your first time at the remote work rodeo, show potential employers you're a skilled workhorse ready for your next challenge. Give them stats about your achievements and contributions to your former or current teams.
- Experience with softwareand online tools/apps. As most teams will already be using some form of messaging and project tracking software, your proficiency level is of particular interest. Let jobs know what you know and how comfortable you are picking up new platforms.
- Winning personality. Not meeting face-to-face for an interview means your personality will need to shine on paper. With the ability to hire top talent from all over the world, think about your unique selling point to help you stand out in a crowded market.
One of the best ways to give remote employers insight about your personality, work ethic, and career goals is by leading them to your digital portfolio.
Create a Personal Website to Brand Yourself
It doesn't matter which industry you're in, a personal website creates an amazing first impression for clients, hiring managers, and network connections.
Sites like WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace make it easy to design professional websites to show off your achievements and personality. Try out a few of their intuitive tools to see which you like best.
And if you don't want to go through the effort and cost of a website (it's really not that much), at least have a digital portfolio people interested in you can view or download on your LinkedIn page.
You can always attach a portfolio with your resume and cover letter to add a bit of extra wow factor to your application too.
Decision makers will be so impressed you'll have a handful of remote interviews lined up ASAP.
Prepare for a Remote Interview
Most remote interviews will happen over a video conferencing app or platform.
If you've never done one before, check out this guide on how to ace a video interview for a full rundown and all the details. You'll definitely want to prepare for a remote interview well in advance and not wing it.
A remote interviewer will ask questions about your remote work history, work style, communication preferences, and more.
So prepare a few well-thought-out responses for common remote job interview questions like these:
- Have you ever worked remotely?
- Why do you want to work remotely?
- What makes you a good fit for a remote position?
- What's your communication style?
- What's a secret you use to avoid distractions?
- What hours do you normally work?
After your interview, always send a thank you to your interviewer because you're classy like that. This goes a long way when you consider how many people don't do this.
Then all you can do at this point is wait and hope you at least hear back from the jobs you apply for, even if it's a nope.
Repeat the Process and Help Others Learn How to Find Remote Jobs
There are a few reasons you may not hear back from the remote job you really wanted. Your best bet is to correct those mistakes and hit the job board again.
Boost your odds by applying during the best times of the year to get hired and only use remote job sites you can trust, like We Work Remotely. Over 2.5 million people check it each month and you should be one of them.
You can also sign up for daily emails with new job listings in your industry so you never miss the chance to take the leap to remote work when the right job shows up.
Now that you know how to find remote jobs, the next step is all on you.