About the author

Darren Cronian, the author of this guide, has spent eight years securing remote jobs and building a successful freelancing business. His goal is to help people escape the office. Read more >

99% of people applying for a remote job will do the bare minimum. Many applicants use the same template resume and cover letter.

You need to be within the 1% of applicants who are crafting a different resume for each job and are being creative to stand out.

The mistake many make is not using websites that specialise in remote jobs. While the likes of Indeed and LinkedIn do include opportunities, they are often harder to find. You could go as far as to say, that these job sites are missing out on a huge market with a growing remote workforce.

Why is it so hard to find a remote job?

Read on to find out.

Why is it so hard to find a remote job?
Competition is tough for remote jobs

It’s hard to find a remote job because of the competition.

You are not just up against people locally, but applications will come in from all over the world. Most companies receive hundreds, sometimes thousands of applicants.

Rather than going into this with a defeatist attitude about the competition, look at it as a challenge. Imagine how good you will feel when you’ve beaten a few hundred candidates to land the perfect remote job.

As mentioned, the vast majority of people will do the bare minimum to secure a job, so you need to be within the 1% who makes an effort.

Spend time researching the company

Read the company ‘about page’, and find out about the founder. Make notes on interesting facts and information. Spend time finding out about the work culture, read the blog content and evaluate if you could share experiences on any goals the company is working towards.

You can pull out this useful information and include it as part of the cover letter, so it shows you have put in the effort to research the company.

If the company has a blog, then browse the posts and look for topics which are related to the role you are applying for. Maybe they are introducing an upcoming feature, so you can share your knowledge or experience when working on a similar project.

Get creative and stand out

This is where you get your creative juices flowing.

Let’s pretend 150 people have applied for the role of social media manager, and the company is looking for someone who has good design skills.

Create two or three designs using the company branding. Then, create an account on Dribbble and share these within the cover letter. The majority of applicants will not go to this length to land the job.

You’re a copywriter and a company is hiring. Read through the sales content and suggest improvements to increase the click-through rate. Identify grammar and spelling mistakes within the copy, and send them a link to a Google Doc.

When applying for a Quality Assurance job, download a free trial of the software, you are going to be testing. Then, identify any UI/UX issues and bugs. Send what you find along with your cover letter.

Yes, this adds on additional time to the application process but how much do you want to be the chosen one? See it as a challenge that you’re up against hundreds of other talented applicants. Ask yourself, how can I stand out?

This works. How do I know this? It has worked for me.

Finding a remote job can be hard

From my experience searching for remote jobs, the best places to start are WeWorkRemotely.com, Remote.co and Remoteok.io. The first step is to identify what type of roles you are searching for.

Yes, it can be time-consuming searching through listings and reading the job adverts, but it will be worth it.

Rather than duplicate the advice already provided, please read this article on how to find remote jobs and also browse related articles.

Finding remote jobs is not hard, but getting hired is.

The biggest lesson you will learn

Compare the job listing to your resume. Did you include all of the skills, experience and personality traits that the company is looking for? What keywords have they used a lot in the listing?

Did you include them in your resume because Applicant Tracking Systems will not shortlist you if you didn’t. Be truly honest with yourself what could you do to improve your resume and cover letter?

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