Before COVID-19, remote work was already incredibly popular, and the majority of workers craved the option to work from home. And now that so many companies had no choice but to direct their staff to work from home due to state mandated pause orders, some of those businesses are making the decision to never go back to the office after seeing the positive results it had on their team and company as a whole.
With that being said, job seekers will continue to see more and more work from home opportunities on the job boards. Unfortunately, especially now that it’s a hotter commodity, some of these opportunities are scams, and we all need to be aware of how to avoid them.
Don’t waste your valuable time if any of the following red flags pop up when looking for a new work from home opportunity.
🚩Red Flag: The job description promises a generous compensation for simple tasks.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Study the job description. If there is a high salary being offered requiring no skills or experience, further research is certainly needed before you apply.
🚩Red Flag: Responses to the job posting are going to a personal email address.
Just because the job is posted is on a well-known and popular job board does not necessarily mean the job is real. Anyone can pay to post a job on these sites! Check the email address before further communication. If they are reaching out to you using a personal gmail or yahoo account, dig deeper. The email address should be a legitimate company email if they are serious about filling a role at their organization.
🚩Red Flag: There is no interview.
Every legitimate company should want to know more about your background and qualifications before offering you a job, even if it’s just a phone conversation. If you are offered a job without any communication other than email or text, it’s most likely a scam.
If they do set up a time for an interview, ask who you will be speaking with. Research the contact names you are given prior to the interview to make sure everything matches up.
🚩Red Flag: You can’t easily find anything about the company.
Researching the company you are communicating with about a potential job opportunity is always essential. However, it shouldn’t be hard to find the information you are looking for. If the company doesn’t have an Internet presence in 2020, the company probably doesn’t actually exist.
Reminder: fake companies can have fake websites. Besides glancing over the company’s website and social media accounts, be sure to look for employee reviews, too. If there are hundreds of positive reviews and no negative remarks from disgruntled past employees, this is also suspicious.
🚩Red Flag: The “company” is dodging your questions, or giving you vague responses.
Be very specific when asking questions about this job, and pay attention to how they respond.
🚩Red Flag: They ask you to pay a start-up fee.
Do not pay! No legitimate and successful company will require you to pay for anything when starting a new job. Training, supplies, etc. should all be covered by the employer.
Work from home jobs can be wonderful opportunities, and it’s unfortunate that scams like this exist. Spot the red flags, trust your gut and dedicate all of your time and energy to the REAL jobs out there.