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Are Your Work-From-Home Job Search Expectations Realistic?

Home-Based Jobseekers’ Expectations Contrast Sharply With Realities

Alan Klein is Home Office Careers Chief Marketing Officer and he has been helping people fulfill their potential and achieve success throughout his own long career.

In this blog, I’m going to share the results of our just-completed survey of work-from-home jobseekers, so that you can understand the realities of the search and hiring process, and perhaps adjust your approach with the tips we have distilled from this research.

But first, let me explain why we conducted the survey. At Home Office Careers, we receive many positive communications from our members who find our 1,000+ validated and screened job offers to be a great resource in their efforts to secure real, honest work-from-home jobs. But we also receive many emails and calls from members who express disappointment that they have not yet landed a job and question, “what’s wrong?”

So we conducted a survey among our members this month. Over 800 respondents completed the questionnaire, giving us a representative national sample of work-from-home jobseekers. That means that these findings are accurate to within a 95% level of confidence.


Here’s the topline: The survey finds that work-from-home jobseekers underestimate the time and effort required to obtain a home-based job. However, most are willing to adopt more realistic expectations of the time and proactive effort required, and recognize the value of professional help in finding screened, verified offers.

Let’s look at these results in detail. First, jobseekers do not allow enough time to obtain a work-from-home job:


It Takes Longer Than You Think:

More than half of those seeking work-from-home jobs–54%–believe it takes less than 4 months to obtain a job; 27% think it should take no more than 2 months.  Bu this does not agree with the reality and is refuted by a U.S. Bureau Of Labor Statistics report that it takes at least 3 to 4 months or more of searching before a job is landed. According to a Workopolis report, it will take an average of 16 weeks – 4 months – to get a job; other estimates suggest 3 to 6 or more months.


It Also Takes More Applications:

Work-from-home jobseekers also underestimate how many applications it requires:

45% think 10 applications will be enough and 65% expect no more than 20. In contrast, the Bureau Of Labor reports that it takes even more: A minimum submission of 20 or more applications and in many cases, 50 or more is required.


Why Jobseekers Are Anxious To Find Work:

High levels of unemployment among home-based job seekers may be creating a sense of urgency in their expectations; over half are currently unemployed and one-third has been unemployed for over 6 months. When I was filing for unemployment I had to visit a unemployment office near me to talk to an employee. So the pressure is on for a majority of work-from-home job seekers, and that leads to an overly optimistic expectation that a job can be obtained quickly and without too much effort. This is clearly not the case.


Employers May Be Partly Responsible For The Longer Recruitment Times:

The 2015 Employment Report conducted by Home Office Careers last November found that two-thirds of hiring managers have a more difficult time hiring work from home candidates than applicants for traditional, on-premises jobs. You can understand why this happens. In most cases, employers do not get to me applicants in an face-to-face interview, as they would during recruitment for a traditional, on-premises job. For the home-based job, the applicant may be hundreds or thousands of miles from the employer, so the decision has to be based on the application that is submitted, the resume, and at best, a “virtual interview” by telephone or Skype video.


Frustration Based On Previous Experiences:

Discrepancies between the expectations and the realities can result in exasperation, a loss of confidence, frustration and a sense of failure for the work-from-home jobseeker especially if they feel there is some kind of worker discrimination. It’s the discovery that a short effort and a handful of applications is not enough. As a result, many jobseekers question the ability to obtain a home-based job through online resources.

Another factor that can weaken jobseekers’ confidence is the finding that two-thirds of job seekers have been exposed to online scams, and less than one-fifth – 17% – of work-from-home jobseekers have ever landed a job though an online service.

Be assured that you can increase your chances of landing a good work-from-home job while being safe from scams when you let Home Office Careers be your only home-based employment resource!


Job seekers Are Open To Attitudinal And Behavioral Transformation:

The survey asked jobseekers to read a short statement that includes the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data on the time it takes and the number of applications that are needed, and read a brief summary of how to successfully obtain a good work-from-home job. After being exposed to “the facts,” the majority of jobseekers recognize the need to be more aggressive in:

  • Searching for jobs – that is, in searching for more job offers that may interest them by looking at offers every day and widening the range of career categories.
  • Applying for jobs – by submitting many more applications – at least 40 or 50 or even more; it takes persistence!
  • Following up with employers – contacting the HR departments a week or two after submission of their applications.

The jobseekers that we surveyed also acknowledge that it may take more time than previously expected to obtain a good job; 4 or more months, on average. This is longer that the 1 to 2 months they have previously thought.


Proactivity Is Seen As A Way To Prevent Unemployment:

The survey respondents read a statement that said not to wait for unemployment to return before resuming the search and application process. Three-quarters of work-from-home jobseekers agree with the idea of staying proactive even when employed, by continuing to search and submit applications, and not waiting until again unemployed to resume the search process.


A Majority Acknowledge The Need For Professional Support:

Why try to do it alone? Three-quarters of work-from-home job seekers (79%) agree in the value in joining an active employment service that provides a range of personalized features. This is due to the recognition that it is hard to spend time everyday trying to comb through the Internet, and then not be able to know if the job offers can be trusted as being made by a real, honest company and not a scammer.


Quality Of Job Offers Is Of Highest Priority:

Among the benefits of a professional employment service, work-from-home job seekers place the greatest importance on the quality and validity of the job offers the service provides. Specifically, highest ratings are given to the service providing:

  • Job offers that are updated daily (76%).
  • Specialized job researchers who manually qualify each job (72%).
  • The ability to apply to as many verified work-from-home job offers as wanted (68%).

Personalized counseling services are also important but to a lesser extent, with 57% interested in a career assistance team and 53% interested in a dedicated account manager.


Longer-Term, Part-Time Jobs Are Preferred:

Among work-from-home jobseekers, on average twice as many prefer long-term employment to short-term. Slightly more favor part-time employment vs. full-time. This is consistent with the job offerings at Home Office Careers, where our Career Search function enables searchers to select type of work. In addition, the job descriptions for each job let searchers see quickly whether the work is full or part-time, and whether it is more of a career position or a shorter-term situation.

Interestingly, 14% of job seekers are open to more than one part-time job at a time; in a sense, creating close to full-time work with two or more jobs.


Your Success Is Our Success

So in summing up, I hope you have taken the key points of our survey to heart and are prepare to give your work-from-home job search the time and effort that it requires, and be sure to take full advantage of your Home Office Careers membership, because “Your Success Is Our Success.”


Listen To Our Podcast

You resume is an important part of the job search and application process, and our Resume Builder can get you started. If you would like to hear me discuss “What can advertising teach you about how to create a more effective resume?” then listen to our new Podcast.

Do you have questions about how you are going about conducting your search for home-base employment, or suggestions you would like to share with the members of Home Office Careers? We’d like to hear from you, so add your comments below.

8 Responses to “Are Your Work-From-Home Job Search Expectations Realistic?”

  1.' Anna Pons says:

    I have been trying to find a legitament home based online job. Preferably part time since December 2014. I (along with 1000+ others) became unemployed from the post office due to a governmental contract. All I seem to be able to find are scans and companies that just want my money. I need someone that actually cares. Can you really help me?

    • Alan Klein says:

      Hi Anna – Thanks for your interest in Home Office Careers. Our team of researchers seeks out and validates each job to ensure it is a legitimate job from an honest company. We have over 1,000 work from home jobs posted in 30 career categories, so there should be many for you. When you are ready to start applying, it will be necessary to upgrade to Premium membership. You can try it for a month, and your satisfaction is guaranteed, so there is no risk!

  2.' Kristi alikes says:

    I tend to find more of the work from home sites ask for money upfront. This is not an ideal situation for me. I am looking for work, I cannot afford to put money out. Where do I look for the actual work from home position?

    • Alan Klein says:

      Hi Kristi – You are able to search for jobs on our site as a free Basic member. But when you are ready to apply for jobs that interest you, and you have your resume updated and ready to go, it’s time to upgrade to Premium membership. It only costs a few cents per day and you can try it for one month, and if not satisfied your payment will be refunded. Hope this helps!

  3.' Kyle says:

    Hello, my name is kyle. I’m interested about working from home part-time and possibly full time if the salary fits my needs. I have a college credits from my air force training but no college degree. Is there anything I can do other than call people on a list, i.e. asking of they’re interested in a product or want a cheaper insurance.?

    • Alan Klein says:

      Hi Kyle – Your Air Force training should qualify you for many of the job offers we post (over 1,000). You do not seem to want to work in Sales, but don’t worry because we have 30 different career categories for you to choose from. Be sure to use our Resume Builder to create a quality resume that will impress employers.

  4.' Dean Campeau says:

    I am looking for a good job from my home in Clinton Township, Mi.I am very adept at office procedures. I only have an IPad.

    • Alan Klein says:

      Hi Dean – One of the many advantages of working from home is that you can live anywhere – most employers like to be able to draw from a national database of candidates. It’s true that some employers of home-based workers do prefer local employees, but rest assured you can search through our 1,000+ jobs offers and find many that you can do from your home in Clinton Township

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