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Asked by Alma on June 2, 2016

I'm looking for a job that I can do from home. Where could I start looking for at-home jobs? Is it realistic to get hired and be able to start working from home immediately?

Answered by Mike, Hiring Expert at Avery Dennison Corporation, on June 3, 2016

Hi there!

I might be able to provide some insight into this question.  Based on my experience, it really depends on a number of factors that would determine your potential for finding a remote/work-from-home type position.  Here's a couple of factors.  

Level in career
If you are very entry-level in your career, it would be much more difficult to find a remote position.  Often times, if you are working remote, you are not getting the "facetime" in at the office that is helpful in building your career.  If you are more established in your career, the positions often require more travel, so there is less of a need for you to be in the office.  Or, more senior individuals have the trust and respect needed to lead teams or work with others without as many challenges.  

Type of work
Some positions are more or less tied to a phone (think of telemarketing, sales, customer service, etc.).  These roles might be able to be conducted from a remote location, because there is less need of regular interaction with other individuals in the office.  With the right equipment, employees could work remote and still have the same level of job performance.  

Tenure within the company
Some organizations want you to "prove yourself" before moving to a remote position.  Similar to building trust as discussed before, the company often will want to see you succeed in an office setting, before letting you loose to work when and where you like.  I'm not necessarily saying this is the right mindset for a company, but it is one that I've run into before.  

Other factors
I'm sure there are other factors that are in place to determine your eligibility for remote work.  Company culture, management structure, and industry could all effect the availability for remote work.  

If you are really interested in pursuing this as an option, I would recommend doing some research on companies before applying to see if they typically offer this type of work.  Start with service and software industries, as those are often known for this type of work.  

Best of luck! 

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Answered by Ashlyn, Hiring Expert at Worthington Industries, on June 6, 2016

Hello,
Mike offered up some great tips in regards to getting an at-home job. I think this greatly depends on your level of experience, as well. If you are an entry level candidate, finding a position where you can work from home might be more difficult than for those who have 5-10+ years of experience. This is because your first few years at the job are spent getting to know the company and understanding the culture, ways of work, and expectations. If you come into a job with a wealth of experience, you may be more likely to land an at-home position.

Having a flexible work schedule is something that Millennials are very interested in, so this may not come as a shock to the employer in which you're interviewing with. I would suggest taking a step back and seeing if the work schedule is flexible, hours, location, etc. before diving into 100% at home work. Take the time to prove yourself and your level of commitment and the opportunity of an at-home job may come your way. 

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Answered by Steve, Hiring Expert at Caterpillar Inc., on June 10, 2016

More and more companies are becoming open to remote working arrangements.  There are a number of ways that you can search for jobs that allow someone to work remotely.  First, some companies, like Amazon, will have a separate link on their career web site for jobs that can be remote.  Second, go to one of the more common job board aggregator sites like Indeed.com or SimplyHired.com and put in key words like 'remote' or 'work from home', etc.  Lastly, there are some web sites that are strictly focused on remote jobs.  An example of this is FlexJobs.com.  Go to this web site and search for available remote openings.  It may take some time, but you can find the remote job that is right for you.

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Answered by Courtney, Hiring Expert at ADP, on June 10, 2016

Great question for me to chime in on - I work from home & enjoy that flexibility.  You might not be able to work from home  immediately, but you can start asking those type of questions during the interview process.  They could have a formal policy around telecommuting or it could be up to an individual manager at a smaller organization.  Good luck!

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