Have you seen the red flag memes circulating your social media feeds?
While most commonly used to spotlight relationship deal breakers, we figured it was time to put a remote work spin on it because we all know we’ve encountered a red flag (or two or three) when scouting out our dream remote role.
According to an analysis published by Glassdoor, the share of online job searches for remote positions jumped 460% (!!!) in the two years between June 2019 and June 2021. The unfortunate reality of such a steep rise in favor of remote work is that work from home job scams are increasing.
To help make your job search a success, we’re revealing some of the top remote work red flags to look out for before you put your time and energy into applying.
Remote work red flags to look out for in a sea of job postings:
- Many grammatical errors in the job posting or back-and-forth communications. When you engage with a legitimate company or professional, you shouldn’t encounter numerous misspelled words or phrases in any messaging. If you do, this is a classic sign of a scam as many fraudsters don’t have the money (or a trusted team!) to invest in having their job descriptions and emails copyedited for spelling, grammar, punctuation, capitalization and verb tense.
- A Google Hangouts interview is requested immediately versus a scheduled phone or video call. You’d probably encounter this on large job boards or LinkedIn. During the chat, they tend to ask you for highly personal information (more on this huge red flag in a minute!). On the other hand, here at Instant Teams, we do almost everything through video. It allows us to show that we’re a legitimate company and ensure the potential candidate on the other end is, too.
- You’re asked for personal information and/or an investment upfront. Run. But in all seriousness, if someone asks you to complete a form or provide your social security number, driver’s license number, credit card information etc., cut ties immediately. The same is true if you’re asked to write a check, purchase gift cards or transfer money to an account for a computer or home office equipment.
- The listing emphasizes a ridiculous salary, yet the job description is super hazy. In this case, a scammer is trying to appeal to the masses – presenting an opportunity that basically any human who’s of the minimum age for employment would meet. If a job posting is genuine, you can expect to receive the 411, from the official job title to daily tasks expected, education or experience needed, essential personality traits or skills and some background on the company.
*Another red flag outside of job postings? You don’t contact anyone; instead, they contact you with an immediate offer for a remote opportunity. Obviously, you have the skills and experience that would make you an asset to a remote team, but at the very least, you should be expected to complete an interview before an offer is presented.
Still questioning the legitimacy of a remote opportunity?
- Put on your detective hat and do some digging online. Search the company name, HR contact’s name and any other details you might have. You want to be diligent here as scammers are notorious for stealing identities of hiring professionals or organizations. If the “employer” has no online presence or the email address doesn’t appear to be reputable (e.g., correspondence goes to a personal email versus @companyname.com email), you might have a scam on your hands. Also, check to see if there are any reviews or recent press releases and/or headlines about the company. What are people saying about the company in question? Gathering this information will help ensure you’re putting one of your eggs into a functioning entity’s basket and give you a feel for whether you would be a good fit given the organization’s culture.
- Utilize the Better Business Bureau (BBB). It’s a quick and easy place to check the legitimacy or reputation of a company, saving you valuable money and time. The BBB also provides information about common employment scams and how to avoid them.
- Ask a friend or family member to check it out, too. We need to have each other’s backs as military spouses are often targeted and victimized by employment scams. When a second set of eyes takes a look at the opportunity, you safeguard yourself against a scam even more. Who knows, they might catch something suspicious that you didn’t!
You can find a real remote opportunity that works for you with Instant Teams.
Instant Teams is a women-owned, military spouse-owned, venture-backed C Corporation. Long way of saying – yes, we are legit. We don’t place individuals in companies one at a time, and we aren’t headhunters or outsourced recruiters. We build teams of ready-to-work remote employees all over the globe to support our customer accounts in software, e-commerce, insurance and more.
Becoming an active part of the Instant Teams workforce brings you right into the modern era as a remote-ready, digital-savvy professional. And guess what? Getting started is easy. All you have to do is create and complete your Arti profile. It’s 100% free to join!
Once your profile is active, you’ll be enrolled in a 30-day email education series on how to make the best of your potential placement at Instant Teams, and your profile is included in all position matching opportunities. If you’re identified as a potential candidate, you’ll receive an email notice from Arti for next steps on how to communicate with our team — and, of course, you’ll get to meet us virtually!
Are you ready to begin your Instant Teams journey and join our 100% remote workforce?