It seems like a dream to be able to clock in at home, maintain your career, and find more time for your family. In today’s job market this fantasy is, surprisingly, a reality.
Sound too good to be true? Just ask the State of the Remote Job Marketplace, which came out with a report recently indicating that work from home jobs have risen significantly in the United States.
To top it off, in a tough economy, businesses are actually finding that allowing an employee to work from home cuts significant costs, including lowering real estate costs and reducing employee turnover. A business would significantly increase profits by lowering operational costs and focusing on increasing worker productivity.
In fact, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) finds that workers are 15% less productive in a traditional office setting. By allowing staff to work from home, businesses and their employees can benefit from strengthened productivity.
So, let’s get to the point: How do you find these jobs?
1. Ask your current/most recent employer
If you have taken time off or even left a job after having a child, a great place to start is to approach your current/former boss about the option to work from home. Demonstrate how you will track your productivity to eliminate those possible concerns and any work-arounds your particular position may encounter.
For example, are you able to access the company server for doc sharing from home? If not, recommend Google Docs or Dropbox. Or, if it’s essential to attend meetings in person, offer to come in on those days or suggest Skype. You know your position best, so find the solution to any objections your boss may have.
2. Find a new job
Again, more and more companies are jumping on board, but not everyone realizes flexible work solutions are an option, which gives you an edge in finding one. Mommybites part-time and flexible job postings are a great resource to find your perfect job fit. Additionally, expand your search for telecommuting and flexible jobs on FlexJobs and see if any of the thousands of positions are a fit for you from their 50+ career categories. If they look like a match, join the award-winning site and receive email alerts when new positions that fit your skills come up.
3. Be wary of job scams
Don’t want to join FlexJobs, which hand screens each position to guarantee it is not a scam? No problem! Continue your search online but be wary of scams that you will likely come across. In fact, there are 60 scams to every legitimate work from home job!
Keep an eye out for “too good to be true” offers, anyone willing to send you money for no work (like the popular mystery shopper scam that can land you in jail for cashing a counterfeit check) or, especially, anyone asking YOU for money – for example, telling you that you got the job, but must first send money for a company-issued laptop.
Double check that the person you are corresponding with is an actual person with a legitimate email address associated with a company (versus [email protected]) and that you have an actual company address, phone number, etc. in the event you will need to report this person if it is, indeed, a scam. And do a quick Google search for the company’s name and the keywords “scam” or “complaint” to see if they’ve already been discovered by other job seekers.
No matter how you go about finding a job that offers you flexible hours and the ability to work from home, know that they are out there, hiring now and a win-win solution for both employees and companies. Good luck with your search!
Chelsea P. Gladden is the Director of Marketing & PR for FlexJobs, an award-winning service that helps job-seekers find professional opportunities that also offer work flexibility, such as telecommuting, freelance, part-time or alternative schedules. To learn more about Chelsea, visit www.FlexJobs.com or tweet her @FlexJobsChelsea