Everything You Need to Know About How to Get a Remote Job
A version of this article previously appeared on Skillcrush, an online education program for creatives, thinkers, and makers that gives total tech newbies the tools to make major career changes.
Cameron Chapman, Skillcrush
A decade ago, I had a traditional office job working for a magazine publisher. It was a great job, no doubt. But it also came with a long—and in the winter sometimes treacherous—commute every day. My 8+ hour workday quickly turned to 10+ hours when you tacked on the hour drive on either end.
Let's just say that when the opportunity came along to cut the commute (and work in my pajamas when I felt like it), I jumped at it.
But I was lucky. I sort of fell into remote working, through freelancing as a copy editor, blogger, and designer, before coming on board here at Skillcrush as a more "typical" remote worker.
Not everyone gets to have the same kind of natural transition into remote working, though. If you're reading this, you're probably wondering how you can purposely start working remotely.
If you're not sure if working remotely is right for you, check out these amazing reasons:
Work From Anywhere
Home office, front porch, kitchen table, coffee shop, coworking space, RV traveling across America, an exotic beach somewhere, camping in the woods (thank you, 4G hotspot!), or pretty much anywhere else you can connect to the Internet.
Set Your Own Schedule
Not every remote job allows for this, but a lot of them offer at least some flexibility around when you work. That means if you find you're most productive from 5am to 9am (or midnight to 4am, or in the middle of the afternoon), you can roll with it. It also means you can live in another timezone without working in the middle of the night! Unless you want to of course.
You won't need an entire work wardrobe if you're working from home every day (at most you might need a few nice shirts for video meetings). And you'll save a lot by not commuting every day (plus that's good for the environment). You can also avoid the costs of the big city and choose to settle where the cost of living is lower, and your paycheck goes further.
Make More Money
If you live somewhere with a low cost of living and median income, but work for a company based in an area with high wages, you may get paid based on where the company is, not where you are. That means you can live in the middle of nowhere but make the kind of salary you'd make in NYC. (Some companies scale salary based on where you live, so keep that in mind!)
This one might come as a surprise, but meetings done via Google Hangouts or Skype always seem to stay on task and operate more efficiently than those that happen in person. Plus—here's a dirty little remote work secret—you can multitask during a lot of meetings (especially if you're only needed for one small part).
Earning more, spending less, flexibility…That all sounds pretty awesome, right?
Spoiler alert: The #1 best way to get the freedom that comes along with working remotely is to learn tech skills.
The best paying remote jobs are almost all at least somewhat related to tech, whether it's content marketing (design and basic HTML & CSS skills come in super handy there) or web development (which requires, you know, coding skills), tech knowledge makes you way more hireable as a remote worker.
I know that the idea of being a stay-at-home mom with a full-time remote job might sound like a dream (if you're reading this, it may well be yours!), but juggling so many distinct responsibilities with no physical barriers to help you establish boundaries is hard. Like really hard.
Let's face it, interviews are stressful. Every company has its own way of determining whether or not you're going to be a good fit for their organization. The secret sauce is in their bag of questions.
Making a career change is not uncommon. In fact, oftentimes it's totally necessary to pivot careers in order to continue developing your skillset.
However, what's more terrifying than making a career change itself? How about writing a cover letter that convinces a hiring manager that you're actually capable of making the change and being successful...