If you’re looking for a work-from-home job, you may have already figured out there are a lot of job listings online that aren’t what they appear to be before you click the link.
In this article, I’m going to show you how to find legitimate work-from-home job listings, how to show that you meet the job requirements and how to make sure your resume stands out.
To gain these insights I talked with Brie Reynolds, a career development manager and coach at FlexJobs, a website that posts the latest flexible job opportunities.
How to Find a Legitimate Work-From-Home Job Listing
The best way to find a legitimate work-from-home job listing is to search for jobs online only in trustworthy places. That means you want to stay away from obscure job websites you’ve never heard of.
Let’s go over five ways you can find legit work-from-home jobs, and we’ll give you some tips on how to avoid pitfalls and conduct your search efficiently.
1. Watch Out for Scams
If you’ve ever spent any time at all searching for a remote job online, you know that there are a lot of scams out there.
According to Brie, “While more job boards than ever are posting remote jobs, most still do not screen and verify that every remote job they post is legitimate and not a scam.”
FlexJobs is a job search website that focuses on identifying legitimate job postings, but it’s not free. The service charges $14.95/month because a real person reviews each job posting to help you avoid bogus listings and scams.
No matter where you search online, be very careful before you actually apply for a job. Make sure the posting is legitimate and is being offered by a real company. Here’s how to spot a fake work-from-home job posting.
2. Know Which Keywords to Use
To find positions that match what you’re looking for, you need to use the same words that the companies use in their job postings. For remote work, here are the most common key phrases:
- Remote Job
- Virtual Job
- Work-From-Home Job
“It used to be wise to steer clear of that last one — work-from-home job — but we’re finding that more and more legitimate employers are using this word to list their remote jobs, so we think it’s wise to include it as part of your search,” Brie says.
3. Make Sure You Have the Required Skills for the Job
It’s no secret that some people apply for jobs that aren’t a great match for their skills and/or experience. When you do that, you’re more than likely wasting your time.
That’s why it’s always a good idea to review the posting’s skill requirements carefully and apply only for jobs you truly feel you’re qualified for.
According to Brie, here are some of the common things employers look for when hiring remote workers:
- Organizational Skills
- Written and Verbal Communication Skills
- Technology Skills
- Ability to Work Independently
“Tech skills can be particularly important to showcase in your applications,” Brie says. “That also means learning new programs and communication tools — email, IM, and text message in particular — and displaying those on your resume in a Technology Skills section.”
4. Live in the Specified Location Required for the Job
It may seem odd, but many remote jobs actually come with a location requirement. In some cases, you may have to disclose where you live when you apply for the job. As you might imagine, recruiters often use this information to weed out a lot of candidates.
“Our FlexJobs career coaches typically recommend that people put both their location and their desire for remote work on resumes and LinkedIn profiles,” Brie says. “For example, where you’ve got your contact information at the top, you can put, ‘Boston, MA and Remote Work.'”
5. Tweak Your Resume According to the Job
If you’re one of those people who uses the exact same resume for every job application, you’re likely wasting a lot of time and effort.
Brie says you should always tailor your resume to emphasize your strengths that pertain to the job you’re applying for.
“If your goal is to land a remote job, you should absolutely include information about your previous remote experience throughout your resume,” Brie says.
Adding extra detail to your resume may make a huge difference when it comes to relevant experience.
“If you’ve been working remotely since the pandemic lockdowns began, that can be noted as well,” says Brie. “Something like, ‘Continue to be productive and effective while working 100% remotely since March 2020.'”
If you make it to the interview stage, you’re going to have to sell the recruiter or hiring manager on your past experiences in the best way possible.
“For your remote job interviews, have stories ready to go that demonstrate times when you’ve used those skills,” Brie says.
“Talk about the methods and systems you use to keep yourself focused,” she says. “Talk about times when you’ve been a clear communicator or you’ve been able to effectively persuade someone or effect change with written and verbal communication.”
The bottom line is that you need to be aware when you’re searching. You also need to prepare for applying for an online job by tailoring your resume to highlight your remote working skills and experience. And if you get the interview, be prepared to tell your story in a way that showcases those skills.
If you want to improve your resume, here’s a template you can use.
More Job Resources From Clark.com:
- Clark Howard Work From Home Guide
- How to Ace an Online Video Interview
- 25 Best LinkedIn Profile Tips and Tricks