Every week I receive questions from folks asking me about remote jobs. It’s anything from, “How do I start?” to, “Do I have the right skills?” and everything in between. Based on the questions I’ve received, I’ve written this article offering 6 tips on how to find remote jobs.
In case this is your first time here, you should know a little more about me. In 2016, my husband and I walked away from our long-term corporate jobs (20+ years), downsized our possessions, rented out our home, and have been living and traveling full-time in an RV ever since.
We’ve experimented with all kinds of remote work options—freelancing, Pinterest virtual assistant, trading stock options, developing courses and more!
In addition to my nomadic experience, I have a master’s degree in counseling and have been a career counselor and corporate trainer for my whole career. I have used my education to help people transition to new work positions, through stages in life, and now working remotely and traveling full-time.
This list is based on research that I’ve done to help support my students in my Remote Work programs.
1. Network to find remote jobs
Simply put, networking is using your connections to find remote jobs, and there is no better way to find these opportunities than through networking.
This might surprise you. Perhaps you think that with social media and online job platforms, networking is so “old school.” But these are just different forms of networking. You take the same tried and true skills of networking in-person and at events, and apply them online.
Join online communities, like Facebook groups, or follow people on Twitter. If you freelance, use Instagram or LinkedIn to connect with people in your industry. You don’t have to be everywhere, but be where there are people who you should be talking to.
Click here to join The Remote Work Journey Facebook that I run. Introduce yourself and tell people about your skills (FYI read the next tip for more information).
Once you’re connected, then share what you know. Be genuinely helpful and answer questions. Offer free valuable tips when it makes sense. Ask people if you can help them. Over time you will be seen as the expert and go-to person when there’s a need. I have found 80% of my remote jobs this way since leaving corporate America.
2. Know your skills
Knowing your skills is one of those “seems so obvious now that you said it” tips, yet is grossly overlooked by many people.
If you’re going to network in groups and share what you do, you have to know what you’re reasonably good at. Notice I didn’t say “great” at. That’s because you don’t need to be an expert to help someone. You just need to know more than them to help them.
Here’s a quick activity. If we’re having a conversation on the phone (I know, so old school) and I ask you, “What are the three things you do best?” In 20 seconds or less, what would you tell me?
If you asked me that question, I’d say:
I’m a great listener. People say that they feel really heard by me.
I’m an excellent trainer. My students say that my course and coaching has helped them in countless ways.
I can see talent in people that they can’t see in themselves, and help people feel more confident about themselves.
Keeping it high level like this helps people easily understand what you’re saying and visualize how you can help them solve their problem(s).
If you need more support in understanding your skills, click here to read the Top 10 Skills To Be A Successful Remote Worker.
3. Refresh your resume (for a remote job)
Do you know what’s more important than a resume? A resume that is recent and tailored for remote jobs.
A remote job resume is different than your average resume. There are specific things it needs to have like a summary statement and keywords that communicate your ability to work remotely.
If you have an old resume, no resume, or even if it’s been over six months since you last updated your resume, it’s time to dust it off.
Even if you’ve been at the same job for umpteen years, you should be keeping your resume updated—especially as your job changes, you take on new work, or you get promoted.
Don’t wait until you need a job, because by then you won’t remember half the stuff you did.
Click here to learn How To Write A Resume For An Online Job.
4. Look in the right places
In Tip #1 I said that networking is the best place to find remote jobs. It’s true, and especially today when everyone is connecting and chatting online. However, you can’t rule out that there are other places to find remote jobs.
With the increase in the remote work job market in the last decade, it seems new online job platforms are popping up every day. It can be overwhelming to look on every platform and keep up with all the posts, connections, and conversations.
Pick a couple to start with to get some traction, and see what you can achieve before getting on every platform. People always ask me what the best platform is. I always say, it depends on your goals and what type of work you want to do.
Upwork can be great for freelance gigs, Flexjobs for part-time and remote work with employers (along with fewer scams), LinkedIn for professional jobs and growing a business, and Craigslist for general remote jobs and side gigs. But I could on and on.
If you want a place to start, sign-up here to get the 21 Remote Work Websites—a curated list of our top online platforms for remote jobs.
5. Know common technologies
Many people tell me they can’t work online because they don’t have a grasp on today’s technology. Minutes later, they regale me with stories of what Less Junk, More Journey did yesterday on YouTube, or the funny Instagram Story they saw.
The point is that if you’re consuming content in blogs, vlogs, podcasts, and joining a meeting on Zoom or Skype every now and again, you have some core understanding of today’s technologies. You’re reading this blog post right now, so you can’t fool me with the “I don’t know technology” schtick.
It’s a good idea to learn some of the most common tools that many businesses use today. You don’t need to know them all. Pick a few and then add on as needed, and add the tools that the company who hires you uses.
Also, when you learn one tool, it’s easier to learn one just like it. For example, if you use Zoom for conference calls, you already have some basic understanding that can make learning Google Hangouts easier.
Here’s a list of some of the common tools used in remote jobs:
- Google Drive and Dropbox for document storage and organization.
- Zoom and Google Hangouts for video conference calls.
- Facebook groups for community building.
- Slack for team communication.
- Trello and Asana for project management.
- WordPress and Squarespace for websites.
This is not an exhaustive list, nor is it a required list. It will depend on what type of job you get, and what tools they need you to use. The good news is that many of these platforms have training built in, and often the company will train you on their way of using them.
Note: It’s worth mentioning that not all remote jobs have to be online. My first remote job was an acting gig in a studio. Some people work seasonally in a location or part-time fixing RVs. It all depends on what you like to do. You’re in charge of what works for you.
6. Change your thinking
One of the best tips on how to find remote jobs comes down to how you think. People have shared many reasons with me for why they can’t find remote jobs, or why no one will hire them, or why they’re not qualified, etc.
If you can relate to that, then just know that those reasons are 100% in your head and that you have full control of them. I want you to focus for a few minutes on WHY you are hireable, what value you add, and how you can help people.
You might say, “But I don’t have the confidence to apply to jobs.” I hear this all the time. Maybe you don’t. But confidence is overrated, and you don’t actually need it to apply to a job or put yourself out there.
I teach an online course called Crush-It-With-Confidence where I help people improve their confidence, while also making confidence irrelevant to their success.
Instead, we focus on courage to get momentum and commitment to keep going. It’s an easier approach than waiting for the confidence stork to fly by and drop a sweet bundle of confidence in your lap.
I hope you found this list of 6 tips on how to find remote jobs helpful. Remote jobs are plentiful and businesses need your skills. All you have to do is get clear on the skills you have, the value that you bring, and how you can help people solve their problems.
This approach will help you be of service to others, and is the best way to find remote jobs.
What questions do you have about finding remote jobs? Leave a comment and I’ll respond.