If you've ever dreamed of ditching office life for good and working from the comfort of your home — or the beach — you're in good company. As of 2017, 3.4 million U.S. employees primarily worked from home, according to the most recent data from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, and that number has likely increased in the years since.
For those interested in a remote work arrangement, it's worth knowing that the vast majority, 95%, still have a location requirement, according to FlexJobs, a listing site for remote jobs.
These requirements — whether it's a specific city, state or region of the country — could be in place so the worker can visit the employer's office for in-person meetings, to facilitate timely communication within a certain time zone, or to abide by employment tax law requirements.
That means, for workers who want a truly location-agnostic job, just 5% of remote opportunities don't have a location requirement.
A job seeker's best bet for landing a work-from-anywhere job is to first identify companies who are completely remote, says Brie Weiler Reynolds, career development manager and coach at FlexJobs. These organizations operate without a physical office or headquarters and rely on a suite of digital collaboration tools (think: online messaging, videoconferencing, document sharing, project management programs) to function.
FlexJobs recently identified the top companies in their database that posted the most work-from-anywhere job listings in 2019. The organizations span a range of sizes and industries, Reynolds tells CNBC Make It, but those with a focus in certain areas, including computers and IT, writing and editing, project management, marketing, software development and education, tend to fare best in a remote structure.
"It's a common assumption that this type of job must be a freelance or contract role, but the vast majority of work-from-anywhere jobs on our site, over 75%, are employee roles," Reynolds adds.
Job seekers interested in these roles should highlight skills that demonstrate strong communication and teamwork skills, as well as comfort with technology, and any previous remote work experience.
"Even if the company doesn't have something open in your field, you might consider reaching out to their HR team or even the CEO if it's a smaller company, and introducing yourself," Reynolds says. "Tell them how you can help their company in particular, and ask them to keep you in mind for future hiring needs in your line of work."
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