10.5 things most people don’t know about remote work
Getting a work from home job will continue to be all the rage in 2019. According to a survey by Indeed, 40% of employees would trade a pay cut for the option to work remotely. Employees are getting serious about finding a remote job that fits their lifestyle.
More Americans are looking for a full time job while working from home with full benefits. It’s easy to see the benefits of remote work. No commute. More time with family. Better work life balance. But there’s more to the remote work life than just admittedly fabulous benefits.
Here are 10 things that future work from home employees need to know in 2019.
1. Work from home jobs are competitive
In 2017, the terms remote work and work from home were the fourth most popular job search terms. Job seekers are looking for remote jobs online, from entry level remote jobs to full time remote jobs with benefits. That means competition for those jobs is increasing.
To succeed in the remote work job search, job seekers position themselves as the full package. Employers want candidates with the whole package and more. While you don’t any special certification or degree to be a remote worker, remote workers must show communication skills, digital literacy, and self-motivation throughout the hiring process.
2. Digital skills are required
The growth in remote work is due to an explosion of digital tools that allow companies to connect employees and get shit done. Many of the companies that hire remote workers are SAAS companies. These are companies that help digital organizations run. You don’t need to know how to code to be a remote worker. But you need to be fluent in tools like Slack, Google Docs, Trello, Zoom, and other team collaboration software.
3. Communication skills are important
Companies that hire remote workers expect their remote workers to communicate effectively in digital spaces, as well as build relationships with coworkers remotely. If you’re in a field where you don’t interact with people much, you’ll need to polish your communication skills as part of your search for remote jobs.
4. It can get lonely
One of the disadvantages of remote working is feeling disconnected from the team. If you’re the type who enjoys having a lively office or joining happy hour with coworkers, adjusting to remote work lifestyle can be a challenge. Remote workers have to learn to build community and relationships virtually. Industry groups and coworking spaces can help counter any loneliness.
5. Self motivation is necessary
If you’re workspace is in the next room, your commute is ten feet. But unless you have a specific time to log in, you might find it hard to motivate to work without the threat of your boss around. Pick a remote company that you are interested in. Make sure you choose a remote company that knows how to engage its remote workforce. When searching for a remote job, make sure it’s a job you enjoy so you don’t lose motivation once the novelty of remote work wears off.
6. Not all remote opportunities are the same
There are many types of remote work opportunities. Some remote jobs are contract or freelance only. Some remote jobs are part time while others are full time remote jobs with full benefits. Depending on the remote opportunity, you may be able to negotiate a full time remote job with benefits into a part time remote job and vice versa. There’s always room to negotiate in a job search.
7. Remote jobs with full time benefits exist
You don’t have to be a contractor or a freelancer to do remote work. You can find work from home jobs with health benefits. Work from home jobs with benefits are increasing, from entry level remote jobs to full time remote jobs with large companies and startups alike. One note: full time remote jobs with health benefits are the most competitive remote work opportunities, so make sure your resume, LinkedIn, digital portfolio, and remote interview skills are in good shape!
8: Remote work isn’t just for software engineers
There are so many types of remote workers! There are remote jobs for marketers, remote jobs for customer service roles, remote work for managers, tutors, scientists, health workers, professors, and the list goes on. Remote work isn’t just for programmers. Don’t talk yourself out of getting a remote job until you’ve explored all the opportunities. Companies are becoming more open to remote work. Upwork, the freelancer marketplace, found that “nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of companies today have remote workers.” So get curious about all the opportunities.
9: FOMO is real
The remote work lifestyle requires you to balance FOMO. If you work remotely for an organization with a headquarters, you might feel like you’re missing out on fun. When your slack channel lights up with notifications about happy hours, lunch and learns, and free donuts, you might feel a bit left out. At the same time, your friends who have office jobs will always ask you to do stuff when they have a weekday off. Depending on your remote job, you might not be able to ditch work for the afternoon to hang out with friends. FOMO is everywhere in a remote job.
10: Remote work lifestyle takes work
Battling FOMO, intentional relationship building, troubleshooting when things go wrong: these are all new challenges as a remote workers. There will be plenty of times where you’ll need to learn something and someone won’t be there to answer your questions. But all work environments have challenges. And every new job requires that you take time to learn new processes and solutions. Remote work is no different in that sense. Approach your first remote job opportunity as a learning experience to help make the transition to remote work easier.
10.5 The majority of us love working remotely
It’s true. There’s a reason why 90% of remote workers said they’d work remotely for the rest of their careers. Schedule flexibility and no commute are hard to give up. We have more time for our family and friends and spend less money on work clothes and gas. It really is that good.
Want to find a remote job in 2019? Start with our workbook to get clarity and confidence in your search.
Plus we give you a list of 50 companies that hire remote workers to start exploring.