Work-from-home jobs can provide the flexibility that you need, but can you spot the scams out there? Team Clark wants you to have the tools to avoid these rip-offs!
Career Development Manager Brie Reynolds from FlexJobs provided us with five ways to avoid these fake jobs.
1. Never Pay for an Interview
A company may want you to pay to get trained, purchase software or invest in some way in order to get the job. Legitimate companies won’t make you spend money in order to work there.
Often, legitimate job postings will list the equipment or specific software you need or provide it as a part of training once you are hired. You can usually find this information in the job listing.
2. Watch Out for the Type of Interview the Company Offers
Usually, companies will do in-person, phone or video chat interviews. If the business you apply wants to conduct interviews only via online chat, be careful.
Instant message interviews are a huge red flag: At best, you probably won’t get any in-depth questions about your skills. At worst, you might get offered the job immediately, and that’s its own red flag.
Pressuring you to accept a job offer quickly is another bad sign. A scammer might try to get you to act without thinking, so always take a step back and consider if this offer is too good to be true.
However, some major companies, including Amazon, have been known to do chat interviews with people applying for specific customer service positions. Doing a lot of research about the company before your interview is vital, especially if the interview is going be via chat.
3. Look for a Detailed Job Description
Real jobs need people with specific skills, so companies will detail those skills in a real listing. If a job description looks vague, highlights only the upsides of the job or has noticeable grammatical errors, it’s likely illegitimate.
Another red flag here could be a lack of responsibilities listed in the posting. A real company will tell you what work is expected of you as an employee.
4. Research the Company!
This is extremely important during any job hunt. Typing the company name and the word “scam” into a search engine is a first step toward finding out if a company is legitimate.
You should be able to find reports from the Better Business Bureau. You can also look for forums on major job search sites where people post experiences with a company.
A company’s website can also tell you if it’s legitimate or not: If the site has grammatical errors or weird punctuation scattered throughout, it’s probably a scam.
5. Ask a Lot of Questions
Another simple and effective way to spot a scam is to ask questions like:
- Why did this position become available?
- What are the key qualifications?
- How long has the business existed?
- Who are some of your clients?
If you get a bad feeling or the interviewer struggles to answer, you probably want to ditch this company.
Above all, trust your gut. If you think something is fishy for even a moment: Stop, think and research. If, after that, the company still seems like it might be untrustworthy, don’t be afraid to walk away from the “opportunity.”