The Most Common Reasons People Quit their Jobs (& Start Remote Work)
Don’t stay in a crummy job when so many remote positions are up for grabs. If you’re dealing with one of these issues, the grass may be greener working remotely.
Are you feeling less than warm and fuzzy vibes in your current position?
You’re not alone.
It’s estimated up to 16% of full-time employees are “actively disengaged” from their jobs and eventually reach a breaking point where they tend to quit before securing a new position [*].
The good news is remote work is skyrocketing in popularity so you may be able to snag a role that lessens or even eliminates your major gripes with your current job and leads to a better work life overall.
The Most Common Reasons People Quit their Jobs for Remote Work
If you’re contemplating leaving your current position due to one of these reasons, you may be ready to work remotely:
A Horrible Boss
As the old saying goes: People don’t quit their job, they quit their boss.
While you don’t need to be besties, you do need a healthy working relationship with your supervisor, manager, or upper management team.
If your boss makes you uncomfortable, doesn’t provide direction or feedback, or generally creates a toxic work environment with their yelling or micromanaging, you have all the red flags telling you to leave.
That’s why it’s no surprise butting heads with a boss is the number one reason people quit their jobs and decide to go remote.
Working without a micromanaging nag over your shoulder is one of the top perks remote workers love most about their positions — and a strong siren song to resist.
Even though you still may have a boss and a team to work with virtually, you gain distance so a horrible boss doesn’t negatively affect your job or the work environment.
A hostile work environment is also a dealbreaker for many employees.
The Work Environment
Your coworkers, office space, and company culture all make up your work environment. If any one of these components is off, your happiness at your desk may also be lackluster.
If you don’t have coworkers who respect or support you, you’re going to feel alone and isolated instead of like a motivated teammate. And if you share a desk in an open office, you also may be super distracted and unable to do your best work.
Remote jobs trump others because your typical office environment is replaced with a virtual one. Here you’ll collaborate with your teammates via email or tools like Slack, Trello, or Wrike to keep in touch with projects and deadlines in your own dedicated workspace.
You may also find greater focus without all the distractions of a typical office setting by creating a designated home office.
Worried about feeling lonely working remotely?
You can either post up at your local coffee shop, brewery, or library or try out a coworking space where other remote employees work alongside each other.
A bad work environment can drain just as much of your passion as being bored at work.
The Work is No Longer Enjoyable or Challenging; or Your Skills aren’t Being Utilized to their Potential
If you’re stuck on the same hamster wheel at work without any nuances, challenges to overcome, or problems that need solving, you may feel less engaged than your boss would like you to be.
But virtual employees frequently troubleshoot issues and solve problems all on their own without their coworkers’ assistance. This not only builds your skill set and professional confidence, it also makes the workday interesting and stimulating.
People also quit their jobs when they feel as if they’re not contributing to their organization’s success.
But collaborating remotely lets your unique skill set shine so your abilities aren’t just recognized, but valued and prized by your team and company.
You may also love not commuting, working your own schedule, and being able to plug in from anywhere. All of these lead to more satisfied work hours as well.
Another big reason people quit their jobs is to boost their salary.
Experts say the best way to increase your salary isn’t waiting around for a small 2% raise at the end of your annual performance review, but switching jobs (and companies) to jump up thousands in pay.
Remote workers earn $4,000 more per year than in-office employees, on average, so this leap makes a very smart financial move[*].
Contrary to many myths about working remotely, stats from the Global Workplace Analytics survey also show 75% of employees who work remotely earn over $65,000 per year, which puts them in the upper 80th percentile of all employees, home or office-based[*].
Plus, you’ll also save money by not spending on gas to commute, lunch or coffee during the day, a professional work wardrobe, and more.
Another reason people quit their jobs is to continue their education.
Going Back to School
If you ever considered going back to school to level up your degrees, you probably thought it was impossible to swing classes with your full-time work schedule.
But a remote job may be the key you need to make it all work.
Besides being able to complete your work around your classes and studying, it’s estimated remote workers “gain the equivalent of 11 days per year” by not commuting to and from work[*].
These “extra free days” can be used to catch up on required reading, prep for exams, or give yourself a break from a full course load and full-time job.
This is a true win/win as you won’t lose any income while you’re in school and your advanced degree may help you earn more when you’re done.
Remote jobs are also ideal if you’re forced to quit your job due to a family member’s relocation.
Relocation of a Spouse or Family Member
Sometimes people leave their jobs not because they’re unhappy, but because a spouse or family member receives an offer too good to pass up in another location.
If your current boss won’t let you work your same job remotely, and you can’t find a comparable job in your new locale, you can always find the perfect remote job online before you even unpack the moving boxes.
Most of the time all you need to work remotely is a computer connected to the internet so you can almost work from anywhere life takes you.
And sometimes that also means starting the adventure that is caretaking.
Starting a Family or Becoming a Caretaker of an Aging Relative
Many full-timers either cut back their hours or quit their jobs completely to take care of a new baby or an aging family member.
Snagging a remote position during this crucial time means you don’t have to lose your income or work experience to be there for those who need you.
Working remotely is smart whether you’re a caretaker or parent because you’ll be allowed to set your own flexible work hours to devote time to those you love and take care of business as you need to.
You’ll also be able to maintain your place in the workforce so you don’t lose momentum in your career. If circumstances change later, you can always go back to a traditional office role without a gap in your resume.
This helps many people, especially women, climb the proverbial corporate ladder.
Stats show companies with a large remote workforce have almost 4x as many women in leadership roles than companies with office-based employees [*].
So even though these reasons are the most common people use to quit their jobs, they’re also some of the strongest to jump on the remote work bandwagon too.
Ready to Find the Remote Job Right for You?
It’s easy to browse open remote positions at We Work Remotely, the largest community on the web for remote jobs that aren’t restricted by commutes or specific location.
When you find a few you may be qualified for and interested in, don’t forget to tailor your resume and cover letter specifically for that remote gig so you hear back from decision makers sooner than later.
Whatever you do, don’t let these reasons push you over the edge of quitting your job without a new role in your pocket. As you can see, greener pastures await you on the other side of the virtual workplace rainbow.