Categories
Remote Jobs

Websites To Find Work From Home Jobs Hiring During The COVID-19 Crisis – Forbes

The coronavirus pandemic is slashing jobs by the day. Unemployment claims in the U.S. are skyrocketing, setting a modern record of 3.3 million new filings for the week ending March 21. With so many in the country now without work—and, with millions living under shelter in place orders—finding work can be even harder. 

If you’re one of the many worrying about making money right now, finding a work from home job could be your saving grace. While there are many sites that advertise work from home opportunities—both legitimate and less so—the operative word here in the job listings is “remote.”

The following resources focus specifically on remote job listings. Keep in mind that some of these platforms are for freelance jobs, which means you’ll be responsible for paying taxes and won’t qualify for the usual company benefits like health insurance, retirement plans, etc. These could be good gigs to get into for the meantime.

Like any job search, you’ll want to have a polished resume and be ready to go on the hunt for work. These 10 platforms will help you get started:

1. FlexJobs

FlexJobs is one of the largest and most popular platforms to find remote work. Members can search for remote jobs by career field. One of the most helpful aspects of FlexJobs’ platform is it shows a posting date for each job, as well as whether the job is full-time, part-time or freelance. 

Accessing the website’s job listings does require a membership fee, which can be purchased on a weekly, monthly or yearly basis. FlexJobs is currently offering a discount on its membership prices up to 50% off by using the code JOB at checkout. This discount is valid now through April 30.

2. Remotive

Remotive is an online job board that lists software development, customer service, product development jobs and more. Accessing Remotive’s job board is free, and all listings have a posting date and redirect to the company’s internal job post if you’re interested in applying. 

3. FreeUp

FreeUp is a platform for freelancers with expertise in the e-commerce industry, in tasks like customer service, social media management, SEO, email marketing, data entry and more. Candidates are put through a vetting process and interviews before being granted entry into the platform. Applying requirements include a resume, portfolio, internet speed test results and information about your services.

FreeUp could be a tough platform to gain entry into, but freelancers who are accepted will have access to basic level, mid-level and expert level jobs that can pay from $5 per hour to more than $75 per hour. Additionally, payments are made on a weekly basis.

4. Boldly

Boldly connects individuals with work from home positions that are W-2 positions, meaning those who are hired will be treated as staff employees and receive Boldly company benefits, rather than just being contractors. Both part-time and full-time positions are available, but Boldly requires workers to be available during normal business hours and commit to 20 hours of work per week.

Individuals interested in the Boldly platform will have to apply and go through an interview before being matched with relevant businesses. To qualify, individuals need at least seven years of work experience within their professional industry or field of speciality, as well as a fast and reliable internet connection and strong time management skills. After being accepted, Boldly matches its candidates with the appropriate businesses based on skill set and experience.

5. Remote.co

Remote.co is a free online job board that posts jobs for various remote jobs, including developers, customer service representatives, designers, sales professionals and editors. Job listings range from part-time to full-time and redirect to the companies’ internal job posts if you’re interested in applying. 

6. Outsourcely

Outsourcely is a platform that connects remote freelancers with companies looking for part-time and full-time workers, ranging from customer support and data entry, to project managers, virtual assistants and email marketers. One major advantage of Outsourcely is that it works with companies who are looking for long-term workers, rather than those hiring for short-term projects. Creating a profile is free, and once a profile is completed, users have the ability to look at job postings. 

7. We Work Remotely

We Work Remotely posts both full-time and part-time remote jobs across a wide range of industries, including sales and marketing, design, writing, teaching and more. Accessing the online job board is free. Additionally, users can sign up to have new listings in specified industries sent directly to their email inbox daily. 

8. Dice

Dice is a free online job board specifically for those in or seeking tech careers. Job listings include full-time and contract work. Dice offers users the ability to search by job title, skill (such as Django or JavaScript) and category (remote jobs is a category). Additionally, users can create free profiles to receive personalized job listings based on their preferences and skill sets.

9. Textbroker

Textbroker is a free job platform specifically for writers looking for gig work in content marketing, including work for corporations, small- business owners, e-commerce and social media. To have access to the platform, prospective users have to complete a short article that will rate their writing skills. Once completed, Textbroker lets users choose their own gigs on their own time, and completed work will be paid weekly (as soon as $10 or more is earned). 

10. Remote Jobs Club

Remote Jobs Club is a biweekly email newsletter featuring remote jobs throughout a variety of industries, including marketing, content writing and UX jobs. If the idea of pouring through hundreds of jobs listings overwhelms you, signing up for their newsletter can cut back on the work you’ll need to put in to find remote jobs. 

Full coverage and live updates on the Coronavirus

Categories
Louisiana gumbo

Chicago style barbecue gumbo from Smoque BBQ is pure alchemy – Chicago Tribune

Instead of a Louisiana-style gumbo with shrimp, okra or file, this hearty stew follows the pitmaster tradition. The Chicago-style all meat affair melds fatty brisket bits, sliced Mikeska sausage and tender smoked chicken. Soft and saucy, still holding a hint of the smoker, it’s pure alchemy, bolstered by a side of steamed white rice.

Categories
Louisiana cooking

Ian McNulty: In hard times, Louisiana shows power of cast iron cooking, ironclad heart – NOLA.com

With so much attention now focused on Louisiana in crisis, maybe Louisiana people can also show what helps us power through dire adversity.

Jobs are gone, stress is high, no one has answers. It’s a hard time to feel any swagger. But each of us is still powerful because we draw strength from what we know and what we share.

The culture we build and practice around food helps build this strength, and it’s never more potent than when everything else has been kicked away. Many of us learned this on the long road back from Hurricane Katrina.

Ian McNulty: How will New Orleans restaurants come back? The people will decide that

It will be New Orleans people who rebuild New Orleans again and define what it will be.

In Louisiana, we know our food has a narrative power in addition to its nourishing one, because it flows through families and is tied to place. Those families and this place have persevered.

Our food can be the story that connects hard times with better times, and times ahead. We are all writing a new chapter in that story right now.

The coronavirus fight has taken away so much. But it has given us time.

It is time stuck at home, for many it is time without earnings, it is time ticking against our needs. But this time can also be a gift.

Time, always escaping us, is now piling up. Practicing, sharing and reinforcing our food culture means not just passing time but using time to pass things on.




crawfishetouffee

Crawfish etouffee, a popular springtime dish in Louisiana, cooks in a wide skillet.

Right now, break out the old cookbooks, the ones with the dog-eared pages and stains and clippings slipped inside, the ones where 40 years ago your mother-in-law crossed out “margarine” in a recipe and penciled in “butter.”

Open the boxes and folders of handwritten recipes sitting beside those cookbooks. Decode them for the digital generation, and tack on the stories about them now residing in your head, catalog them for the grandkids they will one day give you.




A streetcar named delicious: How NOPSI got New Orleans cooking

A cast-iron pot sizzles away on a gas stove.

Transmit this knowledge, and burnish it with the intensity of these hard times. It will be an heirloom to celebrate in better days, when the travails of 2020 are family stories.

Passing down our passion for food is faith in the future and an investment in the good times we will all have long after these hard times are done.

Haul out the black pot and skillet, those ancestral vessels passed down along with the recipes for them, tough as any tank and in service twice as long. Let them be an example too.

In Louisiana, we know the best kind of tough is not hard edged but open armed and lionhearted. We know toughness is the same thing as generous fortitude, the strength to endure together, which is precisely what this bizarre fight demands. We all have to wait this out. While we wait, we can thicken the roux that binds us.

The biggest pot chef Isaac Toups has in his arsenal is a crawfish cooker, and on Thursday afternoon he had it filled to the brim with gallons …

On Thursdays now, Daniel Victory hosts a weekly happy hour from his downtown New Orleans bar Victory with specialty cocktails, a DJ spinning t…

On one day last week, a team of New Orleans musicians shuttled 1,052 freshly-made meals to staff at local hospitals, while a circuit of restau…

Categories
cajun cooking

9 New Cookbooks We’re Escaping Into Right Now – Bon Appetit

Spring cookbook season gets me almost as excited as rhubarb crumble. I said almost.

I wrote that line months ago, when I drafted this story for our April issue. My rhubarb-tinted optimism has waned recently, but books are still coming out, people are still cooking, and while your carefree shopping habits may have changed, diving into cookbooks can either give you a time-consuming project to tackle or at least a brief bit of escapism. Below, I’ve compiled a list of very different cookbooks with the hope that you can find the one your heart is after. Or maybe that’s your stomach talkin’. Either way: follow it.

All products featured on Bonappetit.com are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Categories
Affiliate Marketing

How Affiliate Programs Can Boost SMB Bottom Lines – Business 2 Community

Small businesses (SMBs) need to break out from the start-up phase as quickly as possible. Normally that happens when you hit a certain revenue level which is challenging if you’ve only got one income stream. To break through that number, consider using affiliate marketing to generate new income without a lot of extra work. The affiliate marketing industry is expected to surpass $8 billion by 2022, which makes it an extremely profitable way to generate new revenue for your SMB.

When you become an affiliate marketer, you’re promoting products or services you didn’t create, but which are complementary to your SMB or are in an adjacent market. Think of them as an add-on to your SMB’s main products and services that your customers can use to enhance their experience with yours. For example, if your product helps customers save time, does the affiliate product give them a better way of tracking how much time they save with your product? If it helps them achieve a goal, does the affiliate product help them celebrate that goal?

It’s easy to get started with affiliate marketing since you don’t have to create the product, buy, or distribute them yourself, which leaves you free to concentrate on your core business. Set up your affiliate marketing program right, and it’ll continue to generate income for you for years to come.

Why Use Affiliate Marketing in Your SMB

  1. You’ll save time and effort because you won’t have to invest in creating the products that’ll serve your audience. The products you’ll promote already exist, so you’ll need to find the right ones for your SMB.
  2. You’ve already built a relationship with your audience, saving you even more time in the process. Many digital marketers recommend only promoting affiliate links after you’ve developed a solid, ongoing relationship with your audience since it can seem underhanded otherwise. You’ve already done that.
  3. You’ll become a more trusted resource for your audience because you’re recommending products and services that will help them too.
  4. Many programs pay out quickly and regularly, so you’ll have your earnings deposited in your accounts fast. No more Net 30 or 60 payouts!
  5. It’s a low-risk way for you to expand your business since you’re not the product owner.
  6. There’s no limit to how much you can earn as an affiliate since the sponsoring companies want to earn as much too. Digital products and services typically offer higher margins (more money to you on each sale) because of their low costs for production and fulfillment; physical products tend to offer lower returns, sometimes in the single digits.

Adding Affiliate Marketing to Your SMB

Step 1: Define the Problem the Product Solves

Your recommended affiliate products should be ones that are complementary to your SMB and that your customers will benefit from. To discover that, you need to know what problem it solves. You want to promote products and services that will help your audience along their journey to success. Never start with the product or commission rate first. Choosing this way causes your audience to lose trust in you, which is a bad thing for your SMB.

Ask yourself:

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  • Is there an external product or service you could recommend that will take your solution to the next level?
  • Could you teach them how to do something or by adding a level of complexity to the solution that you can’t offer right now?

Step 2: Choose the Affiliate Products or Services That Fit the Solution

To discover affiliate programs and products, look at the ones you use in your SMB that help you solve the same problem or achieve the same goal. Write down a list of the courses, books, software, physical products, and coaching services you’ve used. Look at the products your customers use or might’ve mentioned to you in the past. Research those carefully and see if they match up with the rest of your customers and your SMB’s values.

This is the ideal way to find one because experience sells so much more. People will read dozens of product reviews before buying, so use that to choose your affiliate products.

Step 3: Gather the Proof

How many reviews do you read for everything you buy online? At least a few, right? The same applies to your audience. They’ve already achieved a level of success with your products or services, so explain how you can increase that with the affiliate product. Search for videos and reviews online for the products that aren’t on the vendor’s site. Find the unbiased truth from real consumers of the product.

If you’re recommending a product you’ve used in your SMB, demonstrate that proof to your audience. Write a blog post or record a podcast. No matter how you do it, give your audience the tangible proof that these affiliate products can change their lives for the better.

Step 4: Pitching the Affiliate Product to Your Audience

The final, and most important step, is your pitch for the affiliate product. Determine where you’ll include the affiliate links on your website and the calls-to-action (CTAs) you’ll write to encourage them to click it. You’ll only earn money when they click and then buy.

Include your links in emails, blog posts, landing pages, podcast show notes, webinars, and social media messages. Be honest that it’s an affiliate link and offer to answer any questions people may have about the product, which shows them there’s someone there to help if they need it.

Adding a new revenue stream to your SMB doesn’t have to be complicated. Use affiliate marketing to earn passive income and help your audience at the same time.


Categories
Digital Marketing

Brand and Digital Marketing – Business 2 Community

The medium isn’t the message.

It’s the brand.

Without the right strategy, your digital marketing will fail—guaranteed.

It’s a brutal fact: in the new COVID-19 normal, businesses that haven’t adapted to digital marketing will have to do so quickly or perish.

Traditional advertising—print, broadcast, direct mail—will shrink to a smaller percentage of a complete marketing strategy, as businesses turn to digital methods.

There are advantages. Digital enables us to target our ideal customers with highly customized messaging. We can receive real-time data on whether or not our messages are effective.

So why, with all of this targeting and data, do so many digital efforts fail—and fail badly?

Part of the problem is the noise generated by so-called “experts.” They’ll promise you a flood of new customers through SEO, PPC, or social media marketing. But most of these isolated tactics are ineffective and waste money.

Here’s the real problem: without the right plan, a clear message and a consistent image, you could be wasting up to 80% of your marketing budget.

Because it’s so inexpensive to enter, the digital space is fiercely competitive—and getting more crowded every day. If you don’t have the right strategic plan for online marketing, you’ll get lost in the noise.

Unfortunately, many businesses fall into one of two traps: chasing trends or looking for the perfect tactic to somehow ‘hack’ the latest social media channel. These surface-level strategies are bound to fail, because:

  • SEO methods that could once rank your site no longer work—in fact, Google often penalizes them.
  • Facebook and Instagram, which previously gave amazing organic (free) reach, now require paid ‘boosts’ to make the same impact.
  • Costs are constantly rising, and policies are always changing, making it harder to create a positive ROI.

So how do you get noticed in this jungle of crowded newsfeeds and short attention spans?

You need a solid brand strategy.

If your digital marketing isn’t generating the results you want, rethink your marketing. Start with your brand.

Your brand is how your market perceives your business. As prospects look at your business, they’re already formulating thoughts, feelings, and emotions about what they see. This means that your website, your Facebook ads, your blog and your social media posts are all ways that your prospects perceive and judge your company—a perception you can shape with strategic branding.

Take these four simple steps to determine whether branding could improve your digital marketing efforts.

  1. Position yourself as the solution.

Your brand should always promise to solve a prospect’s problem. Too often we proclaim all the wonderful things our product or service can do—but if you fail to connect with the real value your customers want, they’ll disconnect from your message.

Your prospects are seeking brands that solve their problems and align with their values. So merely flaunting your features and benefits won’t help them.

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In other words, customers don’t care about your story; they only care about how you fit theirs.

Instead, look for aspirational values that express who your prospects want to be. Clearly communicate how engaging with your products and services will transform their lives and experiences. Then you’ll be on the right track.

  1. Emphasize clarity.

Recent studies show that the average human attention span has dropped to eight seconds. That doesn’t sound so bad until you realize that a goldfish’s attention span is nine seconds. So we must adapt to cut through the noise and reach the right customers. Or, put another way:

If a prospect or client can’t figure out what you’re trying to say in a couple of seconds, they’re gone. Period. No matter how great your products or services may be.

Your audience needs a reason to keep reading or listening—quickly before their attention inevitably shifts. A well-positioned brand needs to communicate its value less than eight seconds.

So when you deploy your digital campaigns, lead with value. Then be crystal clear about what you’re offering, and what it can do for the reader. Clarity is absolutely crucial to get your market’s attention. Once you have it, then you can build a reputation of trust.

  1. Continually convey quality.

The number one driver for engagement is trust. And since brand is a perception, it has the power to create trust.

Imagine you’re driving in the middle of nowhere and your car breaks down. You need a repair shop, so you pull up your phone and find 2 results.

Of the people we asked, 98% said they’d call the Hillmuth version on the right. Why? Because national brands establish a standard for image quality. Clean lines, easy-to-read typography and a limited color palette lead not only to retention but to trust.

As you take a deeper look at your digital marketing pieces, ask yourself: how can I transform your company’s image from a “local” brand to the quality of a national brand?

  1. Keep it consistent.

Lack of consistency is one of the most common issues we see in small business marketing. If your brand isn’t consistent overall, you’ll waste a lot of time and money.

Fortunately, there’s an easy fix.

Start by printing out some screenshots of your branded digital materials: your website, social ads, banner ads and landing pages. Gather up your printed materials as well, especially if they lead to online destinations.

Take a photo of all the materials together to get an overview of how you’re visually presenting your brand. Does it consistently reflect your identity, message, and values?

Your goal is to make consistent use of the same message and visuals. Make sure:

  • Your logo is visible and appears the same on all items.
  • Messaging content is consistent across all media.
  • Color palette and use of fonts are also consistent across all media.

To sum up:

Be sure to tell your prospects how you’ll solve their needs.

State your case clearly and consistently, keeping high graphic and content standards.

Then your brand will flourish wherever it appears—and particularly in the digital space.


Categories
Freelance jobs Online

The Coronavirus Pandemic Is Driving Huge Growth In Remote Freelance Work – Forbes

Welcome to the freelance revolution in the era of COVID-19. This is the third report, and invites freelance business and thought leaders to comment on topics of importance as the global economy works through the pandemic. 

One of hottest topics among freelancers this week is the future of remote work. That’s my question this week to freelance leaders: How do you see the medium and longer term impact on your business of the current ‘shift to remote’ of your clients because of COVID-19? 

Overall, leaders see remote as a game changer and a win/win for freelancers, organizations and employees. But, sustainability needs a firm foundation: the right investment, good operational plumbing, smart HR systems, strong soft skills, and outstanding communication. 

Leaders also say that freelance platforms, remote and distributed from day one, are uniquely able to educate, support and partner with organizations turning to remote distributed teams. Companies are learning that remote distributed, teams easily “plug and play” with enterprise freelance platforms. That, in turn, leads to the next step in a tech powered future of work: blurring the distinction between employee and freelancer. 

Here are the observations that our freelance revolution leaders shared:

Ben Huffman, CEO of Contra: “There is a fundamental shift to project based employment, tricky at first, but long term will lead to a renaissance in how we work and enable all of us to achieve greater work-life balance. COVID-19 is an accelerant to a trend that has been long overdue. We have seen a 10,000% increase in membership on our platform in the last month alone.” 

Taso du Val, CEO of Toptal: “The current pandemic has forced almost all of our clients to very quickly transition to a fully distributed workforce. In many cases, this has created significant disruption in how teams operate and conduct their business. For a company like Toptal, which has always been a fully distributed team, we’re able to offer guidance as to how to do this in a way that helps our clients both manage immediate challenges and sets them up for success in the mid to long term. The lasting impact to our business is acutely correlated to the ability of our clients to manage through this transition.”

Max Friberg, Cofounder of Inex One in Sweden: “I see growth in the medium and longer term. Our platform helps investment teams to collaborate online. I think the Covid crisis sparks an overall shift towards efficient online platforms. I also think this behavioural change will stick, even after the crisis ebbs.”

Leslie Garçon, Cofounder of Weem in France: “Most WEEM projects were done on clients’ premises and we and clients encouraged it. With COVID-19, projects have shifted to remote. Meetings are replaced by conference calls and clients realized that consultants’ commitment was unimpacted. Long term, it might confirm the efficiency of fully remote projects.”

Paul Estes, Editor in Chief of Staffing.com: “An estimated 58% of knowledge workers now work remote. The feeling that work couldn’t be done remotely is largely debunked. The challenge now: many companies invested in large and expensive physical campuses and are incented to drive utilization over the benefits of more progressive remote work programs. We will see a shift in how talent wants to engage. Companies that focus on outcomes and flexibility will attract the best and the brightest.” 

Emma El Karout, CEO of One Circle in the Mideast and Africa: “Remote work will be tough to roll back once we beat this pandemic. Companies that resisted remote work are seeing real evidence that it works. Remote work itself is going to improve exponentially as people invest in it as a primary work arrangement, and will require an overhaul of HR practices.”

Rishon Blumberg, Cofounder of 10x Management and 10x Ascend: “We are seeing early signs that highly skilled, very experienced, remote freelancers are still in demand and this may ramp up as companies start to come back online but still need to be agile and keep headcount low.”

Stephanie Nadi Olson, CEO of We Are Rosie: “We serve large brands and agencies, and the normalization of remote work eliminates the need to legitimize how remote work can be successful, which has been a mild barrier. The remote-first nature of our consulting just made a jump from liability to asset column for many of our clients. This will lead to faster adoption of our model, greater success for our clients, and hopefully the marketing industry at large.” 

Florent Ogoutchoro, CEO of The Tech Guys in Benin Africa: “The fact of everyone shifting to remote work has two main impacts on a business like ours. First, it is easier to convince new clients about the advantages of our services. Second, companies will develop new processes adapted to remote work, which will make collaboration with us more efficient.”

Jeffrey Moss, CEO of Parker-Dewey: “Companies that have historically not provided remote opportunities are quickly making the adjustments, and seeing how remote can fit into their existing processes. In my view this won’t replace on-site work, but helps companies see where it complements.”

James Sandoval, CEO of MeasureMatch in the U.K.: “This sudden shift to working remotely is a brilliant proving ground for innovation but clients are telling us it’s also enormously disruptive. Many organizations are in shock, exacerbated by unnerving furloughs and firings to preserve cash.  We’re expecting the mid-term impact on our business to be similarly disruptive, but it’s also an important opportunity. We’ll see demand for professional services depressed for a period, but we’re converting this into breathing space to double down on platform development. The longer term outlook remains very promising.” 

Sam Durand, Founder of Going Freelance in France: “When the crisis ends it will be time for companies to transform how they work and define their ‘new normal’.  Clients will need help to set up their new organization with flexibility, more on-demand talents and more empathy in their culture.” 

Alok Alstrom, CEO of AppJobs in Sweden: “For clients in the remote work category, we see a massive increase starting in mid-February and accelerating as the crisis deepens.  For the long term, the high number of “home quarantined” will accelerate the adoption and development of “working from home” by companies worldwide. This will prove challenging at first, but with time we will see an increased interest in all remote working platforms.”

Steve King, Cofounder of Emergent Research: “Medium and longer-term, the pandemic induced recession will increase use of non-employee talent. Companies are focusing on flexibility, agility, and resilience and non-employee talent contributes to these objectives. The massive growth in remote work helps business leaders realize workers needn’t be co-located to be productive. They’re also learning freelancers are relatively easy to integrate into distributed work teams. The bad news is that the near-term impact on most independent/gig workers is likely not good.” 

Chandrika Pascricha, CEO of Flexing It in India: “We are seeing 3 strong themes, though it’s early days. Existing users of freelance talent are doubling down and expecting to do more. Internal champions see this as an opportunity to use freelancers in a more strategic and structured manner. Our platform has seen growth in incoming inquiries from potential clients and organisations looking to leverage independent talent as a serious strategy. There’s been growing interest in Flexing It’s remote consulting product through which clients around the world efficiently leverage India’s talent pool.” 

 Alexandre Maximen, Cofounder of Getapy in Canada: “We see a decrease in customer spending as they cope with Q1 losses. Once they financially recover and operational fundamentals are back to pre-COVID levels, we see the market easing up and huge opportunities for innovative solutions in the remote space.”

Chris Dwyer, VP R&D for Ardent Partners: “Some business leaders call this the greatest remote work experiment in history. Many organizations are struggling with infrastructure, technology support, and seamless communications. Longer-term, this will fundamentally shift how business operates and many, many businesses are learning how impactful remote work can be on worker productivity. When this pandemic is behind us, corporate planning will include a laser-like focus on digital transformation, distributed teams, and a more agile culture.”

Ashmita Das, CEO of Kolabtree in the U.K.: “Many traditional businesses are working remotely for the first time and realizing benefits. Science and healthcare organizations were slow to adapt to remote due to the nature and complexities of their work. However, the current situation is forcing them to rapidly adopt new ways of working and collaborating. We expect them to implement better remote working policies within their organizations and be open to hiring location-independent freelancers through platforms like Kolabtree.” 

Yoann Lopez, CMO of Comet in France: “The silver lining of this crisis is a greater focus on enterprises’ flexibility, and relationships with suppliers, including freelancers. Remote is part of these changes.  For Comet, a platform for IT freelancers, there’s no reason to work on-site besides companies’ policies. If these change, it makes our platform way more liquid, especially in France where most of our tech, and large clients are in Paris, but many freelancers are relocating in smaller, less stressful cities. This greater liquidity thanks to remote work makes Comet’s business stronger in the medium and longer term.” 

Joseph Hajjar, Cofounder of Ashghali in Lebanon: “In the short term, shifting to remote will lead to a decline in overall demand in our services sector although remote services can be outsourced and this might be an advantage for global freelance platforms. However, this is all temporary. We believe that there’s going to be a spike for local demand once this pandemic is over because people were abstaining from all activities that involve human interaction.”

Categories
Remote Jobs

The secret to landing a remote job — and who is hiring right now – CNBC

The surge in unemployment from the coronavirus pandemic has many workers shifting to other industries. One option is remote work, a practice that has grown 159% since 2005.

mapodile | Getty Images

The belt-tightening in response to the coronavirus outbreak is leading businesses to cut hundreds and sometimes thousands of employees. Last week several states reported that so many people were trying to file unemployment claims at the same time, their websites had crashed. On Thursday the Labor Department reported a surge in jobless claims to 3.28 million, shattering the Great Recession peak of 665,000 in March 2009 and the all-time mark of 695,000 in October 1982.

For many who are out of a job, remote work is a tempting solution, not only during social distancing but as a full-time long-term job. A special analysis done by FlexJobs and Global Workplace Analytics found that there has been a major upward trend in the amount of people working remotely in the U.S.

But according to online remote job platform FlexJobs, finding a remote job comes with its own set of unique challenges: You not only have to demonstrate that you’re the best applicant for the job but that you’re the best remote applicant, says Brie Reynolds, FlexJobs’ career development manager and career coach.

To help those who want to shift away from working in the office to working from home, CNBC spoke to FlexJobs to find out the best way to search for a remote job, sell your skills and prepare for the interview — and which companies are hiring remote workers right now.

Understand the language

There are at least 19 different ways to say “remote work.” Since no two companies use the same term, as you’re searching for a remote job, you should know all the different ways to say “remote work.” Here are just a few of the common ones FlexJobs says you should be aware of:

  • Distributed workforce: When you and everyone you work with work remotely
  • Work at home (or work from home): When you work at home
  • Virtual job: When all the work is done online or in a virtual office
  • Work from anywhere: A job without any geographical restrictions
  • Agile workforce: A flexible workforce

“Pay attention to the wording used by companies in job listings,” says Reynolds. “You might notice that companies in your industry or line of work tend to say ‘telecommute’ instead of ‘remote’ or ‘remote’ instead of ‘virtual.’ Those subtleties can focus your search on the best keywords for your particular career goals.”

Read the job description carefully

While there are jobs that are 100% remote, some require you to be in the office a few days a week. Reynolds says you must read the job description carefully. Some fully remote jobs also have a location requirement. There are several reasons why remote jobs have this restriction, including:

  • Legal: Some licensing requirements or government regulations may restrict the company to and from specific locations.
  • Taxes: Companies may pay employment taxes only in certain states.
  • Travel: Some companies require you to take frequent business trips, which makes living near an airport a necessity.
  • Client base: Remote work doesn’t mean never meeting clients in person. If you’re responsible for a certain territory of customers, you may need to live close to them to facilitate meetings.

Watch for red flags

Unfortunately, the “remote work” job category tends to attract scams, says FlexJobs. For every one legitimate work-from-home job, there are approximately 60 to 70 work-from-home job scams. In other words, less than 3% of all work-from-home job listings are for legitimate jobs. Some of the common scams include secret shopping, product testing or reshipping and rebate processing. Here are a few red flags Reynolds says you should be aware of:

  • The ad says things like “Unlimited earning potential,” “Investment opportunities and seminars” or “Quick money.”
  • You’re asked for personal financial information (like your Social Security number or birth date) early in the interview process or as part of your application.
  • The job requires upfront expenses from you.
  • You’re offered a job without anyone contacting – or even asking for – your references.

Search the Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission websites to be sure the sites are valid, and search the company name on a search engine, plus the word “scam,” and see what comes up.

Know where (and how) to focus your search

Certain job boards focus on all types of jobs, but if you’re looking for a remote job, focus your search on job search platforms, like FlexJobs or Upwork, that specialize in remote and flexible work and whose research teams vet their job posts. You could also browse a company’s career page and be on the lookout for works like “work-life balance” or “flexibility.”

Sell your skills

If you have any previous experience working remotely, make sure you mention them in your cover letter and resume. But if you haven’t worked remotely, you may have to do some digging to spotlight some experience that could be relevant to remote work.

Start with your clients and co-workers, says FlexJobs. Are they located somewhere else? If so, have you coordinated a meeting across multiple time zones? Collaborated on a project? How did you accomplish these tasks? What software did you use? Talk about your successes in these areas.

Thomas Barwick | Stone | Getty Images

Even if you’ve never worked with someone outside your office, that doesn’t mean you don’t have the skill set necessary for remote employee success. Employers with remote positions want applicants that are skilled in time and task management, self-motivated and focused, comfortable with technology and have excellent communication skills, says Reynolds.

“Your resume should include a section that highlights your technology skills because being comfortable with technology and basic troubleshooting is critical for remote work,” FlexJobs’ Reynolds says. “List all the programs you’re familiar with, including general programs like Microsoft Office, Salesforce or Quickbooks, and remote-specific programs like web and videoconferencing tools, online chat programs, document sharing, project management, collaboration tools and more.”

Prepare for the interview

Remote interviews usually involve a phone or video call. If your interview requires the internet, make sure you have a reliable connection. Wi-Fi and cellular connections are OK, but a wired internet connection is usually a safer bet, says FlexJobs. Download (if necessary) and test your connection to be sure everything works.

Also, think about where you will have your interview. Do you have a home office? If so, does it look professional? Make sure the area is tidy and clean. If you don’t have a home office, go into a room where you won’t be interrupted during the interview.

“For video interviews, practice answering questions on camera, either by yourself or with a friend who wants to help. Get everything set up and speak your answers out loud while looking at your computer camera. “t’s hard to get used to at first, so practicing ahead of time will calm your nerves for the real interview,” Reynolds says. Attend to these things in advance, so you’re ready to go when it’s time.

An interview for a remote position will include the standard “Tell me about yourself” or “Why did you apply for this job?” and “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” Prep and practice for these, but also keep in mind these remote-specific interview questions, too, says Reynolds:

  • Where do you work when you’re remote?
  • Why do you want to work remotely?
  • How do you handle distractions?

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