They say looking for a job is a full-time job. Well, looking for a work-from-home job can be that much more labor intensive. For one, you’ve got to search all corners of the internet for remote job leads — and this can lead you to some pretty murky places. And, in the world of work-from-home, murky = scams.
Even though there’s plenty of legitimate home-based jobs to be had, there’s still some unscrupulous people out there preying on would-be remote workers. As a work from home job seeker, you’ve got to be on the lookout for potential scams and be hyper-vigilant about researching unfamiliar companies before you apply — making the application process that much longer.
And then, once you find what seems to be the perfect remote job from a reputable company, guess what? They’re not hiring in your state. And now you’re back to square one.
See what I mean? It’s exhausting. I get it. And that’s probably why I get so many messages from weary job seekers who are all but ready to give up on their search.
It’s an all too familiar story I hear again and again: “I’ve applied to hundreds of work from home job leads but haven’t been hired yet. What gives?”
The truth is, you’re probably committing one or more mistakes that are sabotaging your work from home job search. But, don’t worry, once you know the problem, you can take the right steps to correct it. Ready to figure out what it is that’s keeping you from work from home happiness? Let’s go!
You’re Only Applying to the Most Popular Work from Home Jobs
You probably follow popular work from home bloggers on social media. And, that’s great! You get a daily dose of helpful work from home advice and stay up-to-date on the latest job leads by doing so.
The problem is, when a popular position is hiring, a dozen or more bloggers share it with their thousands and thousands of followers. This one ad is then re-shared and seen by so many people and gets hundreds, if not thousands, of applicants. When so many job seekers are all competing for a limited number of openings, it’s really tough to stand out in the crowd — even if you are perfect for the job.
While you definitely should apply for the job leads that show up in your Facebook and Twitter feed, if you want to, you shouldn’t limit yourself to only these positions.
Try This Instead
Take it upon yourself to find work from home job leads on your own. It’s easier than you think. In fact, at the end of this post, you’ll have the chance to opt-in to my mailing list and, as a big thank you, I’ll share a guide with you that demonstrates how you can easily find 100s of (legitimate) work from home job leads on your own.
In the meantime, think about regional work from home jobs instead of national or even international ones. A good place to start is your local Craigslist. Before you even ask, I’m gonna come right out and say it: No, Craigslist isn’t just a sea of scams. In fact, quite a few well-known and legitimate companies post their openings on Craigslist (Amazon is one of them!).
When a remote job is only hiring in your area, the applicant pool goes down quite a bit and your chances of getting hired increases. And, since more and more companies, large and small, embrace remote work options, you may actually be surprised to see that there are some telecommute positions available exclusively in your area.
State-Specific Job Search
Remember, a lot of work from home jobs aren’t available in every state. You can use this to your advantage by figuring out which companies hire where you live. Again, think about how much the competition goes down when a job is only available in select states versus nationwide.
The Work at Home Woman put together a mega list of home-based jobs available by location — make sure to see which companies hire in your state, visit their career page, and apply if there’s any openings that fit your skills/experience/interests.
If you focus on jobs that aren’t as heavily advertised, have less competition, and are only available in certain areas, I bet you start seeing an increase in the number of interviews and callbacks you receive.
You’re Applying to Too Many Job Openings
Just because you really want to work from home doesn’t mean you should apply for every opening you come across. For one, that’s exhausting. And two, you’re probably not qualified for every job nor would you really be happy in every home-based position out there.
When it comes to job searching, your time is best spent putting effort into applying for the positions you’re qualified for and those that fit your ideal job criteria.
As far as home-based jobs, there’s everything from full-time positions with employee benefits to online gigs that are only good for earning extra money here and there.
If you have your heart set on a full-time remote job, you’re simply wasting time, energy, and effort by applying to contract, freelance or part-time jobs. Similarly, if you only have free time at night once your little ones go to sleep, it doesn’t make much sense to apply to full-time day jobs.
Try This Instead
Narrow the playing field by figuring out which kind of work from home job you’re looking for. If you need something with a set schedule that comes complete with health insurance, check out companies that offer full-time remote jobs with benefits.
If you want to try working from home but aren’t quite ready to quit your day job, perhaps moonlighting is the best bet for you.
There’s no sense in wasting time applying for every work from home job under the sun. First, figure out what kinds of jobs you’re qualified for and then be realistic about your availability as a remote worker.
Even though you’ll be applying to fewer positions when you narrow your job search, you’re actually increasing your chances of getting hired because you’re only focusing on those jobs which, one, you’re qualified for and, two, meet your job needs.
You’re Not Set Up to Work from Home
When you work outside the home, your place of employment has pretty much everything you need to get the job done. They supply your office, desk, chair, computer, supplies, telephone and anything else you might need to perform your job duties.
When you make the switch to working from home, you’re often in charge of making sure you’ve got the right setup to be a successful remote worker. Depending on the job and the company, this can include everything from a dedicated office space in your home to a landline for making and receiving calls. It really just depends on the individual job.
In addition to equipment and space, you’ll have to run your home office like an actual place of work. If you have caretaker responsibilities during the day, a dog who barks nonstop, noisy neighbors, or other things that interfere with your ability to work, you’re going to find it difficult to find a work from home job.
Try This Instead
While you shouldn’t install a landline just in case you might need one to work from home, you should make sure you have the basic necessities that make up a home office. For starters, high-speed internet and a good working computer are a definite must.
In fact, a lot of work from home companies will ask you what your internet speed is and the type of computer you have during the application process. They just want to make sure you’ve got the basic workings of a home office before they consider you as a contender for a job.
You also need to be realistic about your ability to work from home. If you have kids in your care during the day, this will limit the jobs available to you. Similarly, if you don’t have a quiet, distraction-free place to work, you might find it difficult to get work done or a company that will even hire you.
But just because you have some obstacles, doesn’t mean you won’t be able to find home-based employment. This just means you need to get creative and find something that fits into your already busy schedule or makes use of your home office capabilities.
So, if you’re booked during the day, consider late night or overnight work from home jobs. If there’s no way you can come up with a quiet space to do work, consider chat agent jobs, freelance writing, or other home jobs that don’t require being on the phone.
Make Your Work from Home Job Search Work for You
Looking for work from home job leads really can be a lot of work — especially, if you’re not really sure where to start. Fortunately, there are some valuable job search tools, tips and tricks you can use to make your job search much easier.
To find out how you can make your work from home job search work for you, sign up below to get my free beginner’s guide to finding hundreds of legitimate work from home job leads (with as little effort as possible!).
And if you’re on the hunt for a work from home career — you know, a job that challenges you, offers benefits, and advancement opportunities, check out The 10-Second Commute! Isn’t it about time you kicked your cubicle to the curb?