If you are an active jobseeker or otherwise involved in the employment sector, it’s likely you have come across the term telecommuting jobs by now. According to Global Workplace Analytics, telecommute job have increased by 103% among the “non-self employed” since 2005, which would account for the rise in awareness of the term ‘telecommuting’ as well.
When a job says it has ‘telecommuting benefits’, ‘can telecommute a couple days a week’, or is a ‘partial telecommute’ position, what does it all mean?
Defining Telecommuting Jobs
It can be difficult to pin down the exact definition of a telecommute job with so many variations of the term floating around in job descriptions, on job boards and articles on the web. Some of the terms you may come across that have been used synonymously with ‘telecommuting’ include-
work from home
position is off-site
no relocation required
work from anywhere
Interchanging all these terms with ‘telecommuting’ can lead to confusion if you are a jobseeker. However, familiarity with these terms is essential if you are looking for a position that allows telecommuting. The actual definition of ‘telecommute’ is as follows-
To telecommute is to work in a location away from the brick and mortar building where a business is located.
Notice that telecommute means you are ‘working away from the actual building where a business is located’. This could mean you are working from a coffee shop, a client location, on the road, from your home or many other scenarios. If you are a jobseeker interested in a telecommuting job, be sure you know where it is you would actually like to telecommute from.
If you are looking for jobs telecommuting from home, be sure the position specifies that is the type of telecommuting it offers. The majority of jobseekers are looking for positions that allow them to work from home when they search for a job with telecommuting benefits.
Legitimate Telecommuting Jobs
Not too long ago, the scam to legitimate telecommute jobs ratio was sky high with not many real opportunities available to work from home. In fact, the scam epidemic was so bad during the U.S. recession in 2008, the FBI and the FTC launched informational areas on their websites dedicated to helping educate job seekers and expose known scams.
Australia’s government run site ScamWatch reported in June of 2016 alone, Australian’s lost over $200,000 to scams related to jobs and employment.
Today, as well known companies like Apple, American Express, UnitedHealth Group and Dell offer telecommuting jobs, awareness of what makes a telecommute position legitimate is growing. For those job seekers who are now on the market after years of working with the same employer and may not be familiar with scammer tactics, going over the basics of what to look for when identifying a scam versus a real work from home opportunity is essential.
Online job scam artists have become very adept with their techniques to dupe job seekers into handing out personal information like social security numbers, driver’s license copies, passport information and even personal bank account and credit card numbers.
If you have been provided an offer for a telecommute job with a company you are not familiar with, do your due diligence before providing any personally identifying information during the hiring process.