How To Find And Keep A Remote Job: A Complete Guide

More and more companies are catching on and embracing remote work. In fact, some experts expect nearly half the U.S. workforce will be working remotely by 2020.

The great news is that you can get high-paying remote jobs as a professional, too. Here’s what to expect in this guide:

  • Top 10 tips for finding and getting a remote job.
  • Qualities employers look for in a remote job candidate.
  • How to craft your resume for a remote job application.
  • How to be more productive in a remote working environment.

Top 10 Tips For Finding And Getting A Remote Job

1. Search for In-Demand Positions

While more companies are hiring more remote workers, there are some fields that are more heavily remote than others. So, it’s key to look for remote positions that are in-demand.

For instance, you can look at forecasts for in-demand jobs from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook, which highlights software developers with a much faster than average job growth rate at 24 percent.

Consider also referencing ranking reports, such as the U.S. News & World Report Best Jobs report, which ranks software developer, dentist and physician assistant as the most in-demand jobs for 2018.

When jobs are in demand, they typically come along with higher pay since there is not individuals who have the skills these jobs require.


2. Show Your Work

If you’re looking for a professional position in the design field or in a creative industry, it’s important to show what you can do with a portfolio and website. This gives you the opportunity to control the narrative and showcase your skill set so that recruiters can come to you.

Go beyond what competing candidates may offer and provide unique content, explaining what you do and what you can deliver.

You can also showcase a portfolio of work even when you are working professionally in a service field, such as a marketing consultant or project manager in the healthcare industry.

Just make sure you get permission from clients you’ve worked with to showcase your work on your website and get testimonials.

Related: Resume Objective Examples For A Compelling Resume

3. Pay Attention to the Papers

Newspaper articles, blogs and industry reports often are great key indicators of the hiring forecasts.

For example, if you are a computer programmer you can quickly see what major industries are using as the main language and what languages are being phased out. This helps ensure that you are staying current with the skills you offer.

4. Level Up on LinkedIn

LinkedIn’s professional network is a playground for professional high-paying remote positions. The professional social media platform boasts having more than 70 percent of the global workforce.

You can easily connect with past colleagues and recruiters by using LinkedIn to find targeted high-paying remote jobs. LinkedIn’s search update in 2018 helped to make searching for remote jobs even easier, too.

5. Network

Most jobs aren’t even reported publicly. So, it’s crucial to network as much as possible. Attend a professional conference where they provide networking opportunities. Consider attending a local Meetup session for professionals in your area.

For example, there are hundreds of Meetup sessions and professional conferences geared toward software engineers, marketing, product managers, nurse practitioners, business analysts and sales professionals that you can attend that include networking events, such as Inbound, Content Marketing World and MozCon.

6. Join a Group

Consider joining an industry-specific group online or in-person to help expand your network and learn about more high-paying professional remote positions.

These groups will also benefit you in learning from others in your industry on new techniques that so you can master your skills.

7. Get Savvy With Your Search Tactics

Narrowing down search results calls for using keywords that are focused on remote work. Consider using “remote” or “telecommute” when you’re searching.

Also, consider removing location constraints and leave it blank if using “remote” is not an option for the Location field. This will help expand your search options so you can find the remote position you desire.

8. Use a Professional Agency

Agencies often can help you do the legwork and reduce the time it takes to search for professional remote jobs. For instance, The Ladders often focuses on finding professional work for high-grossing positions with six-figure salaries.

You can also focus on agencies that are industry-specific or those that look for remote work to help you during your job hunt.

9. Get Social

Social media is an ideal place to search for professional positions. Use hashtags to find the professional job you’re searching for. Some companies also are using social media first to announce job opportunities before posting to the company website.

So, follow the companies that you want to work at to monitor if they announce new jobs on their social media accounts.


10. Develop Your Skills

If you want a high-paying remote job, sometimes it calls for developing your skills. You can take a certificate, such as the ones offered via Hubspot, Harvard or MOOCs like Coursera and Udacity. Some MOOCs even lead to high-paying professional jobs.

For example, Udacity’ has partnershisp with companies, such as Nvidia, Uber and Mercedes-Benz and provide direct hiring opportunities once you sign up and complete specific nanodegree programs, such as Udacity’s Self-Driving nanodegree program.


What Employers Look For In A Remote Candidate

Of course, it is possible to eventually adjust various aspects of remote working and learning how to get the most out of your working environment.

However, employees look for particular traits when choosing candidates for remote jobs.

Here are some essential things remote employers look for when choosing applicants:

  • The ability to work in teams
  • Excellent organization skills
  • Strong communication skills
  • Self-discipline and consistency

Fortunately, everybody can develop these qualities with some practice. You must prioritize your work and ensure your entire day revolves around it.

Does this mean that you should not leave any room for other activities? Of course not!

However, creating a schedule that prioritizes your job will help you complete your work on time and prevent distractions.

Writing a Resume for a Remote Job

It would be best if you created an especially tailored resume for almost every job application.

Sure, most resumes’ formatting and structure might be the same, but you must make some tweaks to your remote job application to improve your chances of getting hired.

Let us discuss some proven tips that will help you create an application to impress your potential employer.

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Write an Impressive Personal Value Proposition

Gone are the days of objective statements – now, managers look for personal value proposition at the top of their candidate’s resume.

Instead of going into meaningless details, it would be best to write a short sentence or two packing a punch. It should promote your qualities and the things that make you a valuable asset for any organization.

Use your Resume to Demonstrate Why You are Reliable Remote Worker

Hiring managers are extra careful when reading job applications sent by applicants wanting to work from home. You’d be surprised to see the high amount of resumes employers go through every month.

Understandably, they skip or skim most applications as most of them are quite generic and similar.

It would be best to stand out from other applicants and show your potential employer why you would be an ideal fit for the remote job.

Mention your experience in similar jobs and how you delivered excellent results while working remotely.

Be Mindful of Your Resume’s Length

As mentioned earlier, most hiring managers do not have the time to read every job application. In most cases, they skim through them and only search for pertinent details.

It would be in your best interest to avoid writing overly-wordy and long resume’s as they will lose your employer’s attention. Instead, try formatting your application to highlight your most important skills in short and sweet sentences.

You can conserve space and avoid using multiple pages (unless necessary) by taking advantage of bullet points.

Tailor Your Resume According to Your Remote Job

It couldn’t be stressed enough to create your job application based on the nature of your job.

Incorporate the right keywords and do not forget to mention your adaptive and transferrable skills, as hiring managers looking for remote employers pay special attention to these factors.

Improving Productivity in Remote Work

According to reputable research, remote work can indeed improve your productivity. People working from home have lesser sick days, take fewer breaks, and complete their tasks long before deadlines.

However, it would help if you had ample discipline to improve your remote working productivity. Are you struggling to complete your tasks on time?

If yes, the tips mentioned below will help you maintain an effective working schedule while also allow you to pursue other productive activities.


Make a Schedule and Stick to it.

Working from home enables you to structure the day according to your will. It would be best to create a routine based on your daily tasks. You will find it increasingly difficult to get work done on time without a schedule.

Sure, creating your schedule provides you with plenty of freedom, but you also have to be more responsible.

Figuring the time of day you want to work is up to you unless you have an employer who enforces a strict work schedule. Nevertheless, it would be best to create a routine with enough flexibility for obligations and emergencies.

Stick to what suits your strengths and needs and try to finish your work before deadlines.

Get Your Priorities Straight

Prioritizing your tasks and organizing your workflow can be difficult without a traditional office’s hierarchical framework. As mentioned earlier, you must schedule your day around your work to get the most out of your time.

Sadly, there is no universal solution for organizational skills, so you will need to determine what works for you.

You can try to-do lists and track your day’s progress to find out what’s most important and how much time it takes. Also, knowing when you should stop is as important as being aware of when to begin.

You will always have a bunch of things to do when working remotely. You must rest your mind and body once your tasks are complete.

Steer Clear from Distractions

Try squeezing all of your productivity during your working hours. Without impromptu gossips, coffee breaks, and scheduled meetings, working from home presents very few distractions.

However, that doesn’t mean you cannot face distractions sitting in front of your laptop the entire day. Learn to pinpoint the moments when you get sidetracked and find effective ways to manage these obstacles.

Jot down intrusive tasks like reading articles, grocery shopping, getting the mail, etc. to complete your work before deadlines.

Marissa Letendre, SPHR, SHRM-SCP

Marissa Letendre is a senior HR leader and resume expert with over 12 years of experience. She has worked for both startups and Fortune 50 corporations and has helped thousands land jobs at top companies. Marissa has written on a wide range of topics, including employee engagement, career development, resumes, job searching, recruiting, and organizational effectiveness and has been featured on sites such as Slack and The Undercover Recruiter.

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