Ready to become a work from home parent? It’s not an easy decision to make. But, when you do get there, it can be even more difficult to take the first step.
- How do you even get started?
- What jobs are out there?
- Will anybody even hire you to work from home?
These are all questions that will creep into your mind as you think about becoming a work from home parent. The good news is, you can overcome these common roadblocks and become a work from home parent. It just takes a little courage and a whole lot of patience to get there.
As a parent to littles, your network may feel a lot smaller than, say, when you were working. That’s okay. You can easily build your network and use it to help you land a remote job.
To start out, hop on LinkedIn, create a powerful profile and make connections. A great place to start are those other parents you’ve been spending so much time with. Don’t forget about family members too! You can also connect with former coworkers, if you’d like.
Otherwise, get social. Join LinkedIn Groups that are related to your field. There are dozens to choose from. Start connecting with other members in those groups. They can be great sources of job leads in the near future!
Before you know it, your online network will be much larger than you ever anticipated. And, this will certainly work in your favor. Remember, it’s estimated that up to 85% of jobs are never advertised. Instead, these job openings are filled from referrals.
The greater your network, the greater your chances of being referred for an open position!
Worried about such a large gap in employment? No problem! Get out there and volunteer. Doing so can help put recent relevant experience on your resume. And it generally makes you look like a good person!
If you can, find a volunteer position that’s relevant to the type of job you hope to land. For example, offer to do the newsletter for a local company if you want to get back into marketing. Want to try work from home customer service? Volunteer to man the phones at a local shelter or nonprofit.
Chances are, there are plenty of companies in your area that desperately need help. And the help you provide can do a lot of good for your community and help boost your resume too.
3. Learn A New Skill (Or Freshen An Existing One)
When you’re feeling a little rusty, consider a new learning experience. Now, this doesn’t mean you have to enroll in a degree-seeking program and take on tons of debt. Instead, hop online and take one of the many short, self-paced courses that can teach you a remote-friendly skill quickly.
These courses are packed with information. They’re affordable. And they let you work at your own pace — perfect for the busy parent looking to step back into the (virtual) work world.
Ideally, focus on a skill that will boost your job performance in your targeted field. For example, you wouldn’t take an online course about Excel if you want to become a graphic designer.
A great place to learn a job-specific skill is Skillshare. The online courses here are purposefully short — perfect for the busy soon-to-be-working parent. New skills you can learn on Skillshare include Illustrator, Social Media Advertising, Analytics, Excel, and so much more. Give Skillshare a try free for 60 days. Be sure to use this link (affiliate link) to try 60 days of premium Skillshare absolutely free.
4. Freshen Your Resume
It’s a no-brainer: Look for a new job, update your resume. But, today, the way resumes work is a lot different than even 5 years ago.
Before, you’d print out a couple of hard copies and fax or mail them in. You might even drop by in person, shake some hands, and hand over a copy of your resume.
Today, for remote job seekers, your resume plays only a small part in helping you land a job. And, how effective (or ineffective) your resume is depends on how well you keyword optimize it.
Most employers use special Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to find and hire candidates. The ATS scans hundreds and even thousands of resume to find the best fits. How does the ATS find the most qualified in a batch of hundreds? Keywords!
Keywords & Your Resume
The best way to keyword optimize your resume is to look directly in the job ad itself. Think of the job ad as being the company’s way of spelling out their ideal candidate. In it, they’ll list the traits, qualifications, skills, and experience needed to get the job done.
To position yourself as the ‘ideal’ match for a job, you need to pull these keywords from a job ad and place them in your resume.
Side Note: Please only pull keywords that actually make sense for you! If a job specifically states that you must be proficient in PhotoShop, you should definitely list PhotoShop as one of your skills — but only if you actually know how to use Photoshop. Fibbing may get your resume seen by a recruiter, but it won’t do you any favors in actually getting the job.
Need an example? No problem. Let’s look at this snippet from a real remote job posted online:
You can see I’ve highlighted specific skills and requirements the ad mentions. If you’ve got them, be sure to include them in your resume. Of course, this means you have to update your resume for every single job you apply for. But trust me — it’s worth the extra time to tailor your resume. Doing so gives you greater visibility and helps you land more interviews. The more interviews you land, the better chance you stand of getting a work-from-home job offer!
Feeling a little lost when it comes to keyword optimizing your resume? Thats okay. It will get easier with practice. But when starting out, try a handy online tool like Job Scan. Job Scan takes the guesswork out of resume keyword optimization by showing you how well your resume matches the job ad. Curious? Give it a try. You get 5 free scans every month by using this link (affiliate link).
5. Understand The Remote Job Search Landscape
Looking for a job is a full-time job, or so the saying goes. But looking for real remote jobs can be even more labor intensive. Why? Because not only do you have to find just the right jobs to apply for, you’ve got to dodge scams too.
Now, I don’t want to make you paranoid, but there are scammers out there who prey on aspiring at-home workers. Thankfully, they can be pretty easy to spot, when you know what to look for.
Remember, if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. And, with very few exceptions, it’s never, ever okay to pay to work from home. Period.
For extra security, be sure to cross-reference this scam-free checklist to help you weed out the bad ads from the good!
Still nervous about scams? No problem. I highly recommend FlexJobs for remote job seekers. FlexJobs is an online job search website that is focused on flexible and work-from-home jobs. The best part? All of the listings are hand-screened. That means you never have to worry about a scam. Ever.
You can receive up to a 30% discount on the monthly membership cost by signing up here and using promo code AFFPROMO.
6. Master The Mindset
Have you been dreaming about working from home but made little effort in realizing those dreams? I get it. I’ve been in your shoes. For years, I wanted to quit the corporate world in order to pursue a more flexible remote job. And it wasn’t until I was pregnant with my son did I actually do something about it.
You see, it’s easy to get into our own heads. We have goals and wants and desires, but often talk ourselves out of doing anything about them.
But, I’m here to tell you, if you want it bad enough, you can absolutely re-enter the workforce as a remote worker. But, you have to put in the work. A remote job won’t fall in your lap. Signing up for get-rich-quick schemes won’t help. And you’ll never land that work-from-home job you desire if you don’t take the first step to get hired!
Be sure to grab the free checklist of how to launch a work-from-home job search in 24 hours. It’ll give you concrete steps you can take today to become a remote worker when you’re just starting out. Snag your copy by signing up below! (It’s free!)
You’ve got this! 💪🏻
P.S. This post contains affiliate links. What are they? Learn more about affiliate links by reading my disclosure statement here.