COVID-19 has pushed our planet into the largest remote work trial period that has ever happened in our history.
What’s more, Generation Z that is now entering the job market is expected to have an increased demand from their future employers for more flexible work options.
The shift to remote working will happen with or without global pandemics and subsequent society changes.
The big question is, where are all of the entry-level remote jobs? And are there enough to go around?
if you go to Indeed, you’ll see there aren’t that many fully remote jobs listed, but that’s because Indeed is not optimized for remote workers:
We examined a number of specialised websites to see what are the top industries, companies and skills required for remote workers.
We've analyzed 10,800 job ads from 5 remote job websites
Our search began at We Work Remotely, which has the largest repository of remote-friendly job postings in the world.
Furthermore, we uncovered data from websites such as JobEspresso, Remote.io and WorkingNomads.
Our first thought was to find the ads that mention “entry-level” in their description or title.
But this method yielded only about 50 ads that were posted in the span of the last two years.
Mind that there were 10 800 total jobs posted in those 5 renowned remote job websites.
This is why we decided to update the way we classified what entry-level constitutes.
We added certain keywords and phrases like “no previous experience required”, or “2+ years of previous experience”.
The usual perception is that you can still apply to these positions with freelance gigs or non-profit work experience.
Still, results didn’t show what we were expecting to find – a considerable amount of entry-level job postings.
Only 4% of all remote job ads were meant for people with limited work experience
The whole process felt like searching for a needle in a haystack.
Let’s look at the average company. Chances are, people with low or entry-level experience will be much more in numbers than senior-level workers, managers and C-suite level employees.
It’s only logical job ads to follow the same trends – more entry-level or minimum experience required.
Let’s check Indeed again:
Out of the total 820,000 all positions that are now available, 742,893 or 90% are meant for people with no or low experience.
Nevertheless, there was one more thing we wanted to check before we drew the line. Maybe entry-level remote jobs are increasing in popularity over time?
Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a steady progression of entry-level remote jobs increasing through time more than the total number of job postings.
In fact, we found a decline in the ratio between senior and entry-level remote jobs.
Entry-level remote jobs are still not spread far and wide, nor their quantity has considerably increased during the last couple of years.
Let’s see what’s the current situation with entry-level remote jobs throughout the different industries.
Remote industry in a nutshell
Just a brief look at the top 5 industries that hire remote workers shows us that nothing has changed much for the past couple of years in terms of the popular industries.
Interestingly, remote jobs in consultancy and accounting & finance start popping up more often than not.
It’s important to note that the Consultancy niche in the graphic above includes Human Resources and Recruitment job offers, too.
This goes on to point out that some traditional job sectors that require face-to-face communication are maybe starting to adapt to an ever-changing digital environment. More on that later.
Here are the top Entry-Level remote jobs that appeared throughout the fields above:
The big three remote worker niches – software engineering, marketing & sales, and customer support are still dominating the remote industry.
- Software Developer
- Customer Support Representative
- Junior Java Developer
- UI Designer
- Junior Email Marketer
- Marketing and Communications Coordinator
- Technical Recruiter
There’s an asterix to that, though. HR job offers that we saw were mainly related to IT and DevOps recruitment.
The only position that wasn’t in any way related to marketing, sales or IT was underwriter.
Nevertheless, we wouldn’t expect otherwise. If a remote work revolution is bound to happen sooner or later, digitalisation will always play the role of the catalyst.
What skills do you need for the most popular remote job industries
Unsurprisingly, the top industries we found to be popular for remote jobs altogether were IT & Software Engineering, Marketing & Sales and Customer Support, followed by Consulting & Recruitment, and Accounting & Finance.
Top software engineering remote job skills
Top Marketing & Sales Remote Job Skills
Top customer support remote job skills
Top Consulting & Recruitment Remote Job Skills
Top accounting and finance remote job skills
As you can see from the graphs above, traditional skills in every industry are on top of the lists.
However, soft skills like Communication, People Skills, Team Management, Team Work & being Supportive are on par with the hard skills.
This goes on to show that if you’re preparing for an interview, make sure to be ready to answer questions regarding those skills, as the need for them in remote work will likely increase in the future.
What's in store for entry level remote work
One topic for the future of remote work remains on the sidelines, in favor of management trust, or companies’ digital competences.
And that is career progression and development for remote working youngsters or experienced people who want to switch their careers.
Experience is a main factor for you to go through employment stages, no matter whether you get it remotely or in-office.
However, how great you are in your job doesn’t necessarily translate into career progression.
A highly-cited 2012 study of MIT Sloan Management Review examines remote working and how it leads to fewer promotions and career advancements, albeit employees feeling happier and more productive, overall.
Networking plays an integral role in getting better career prospects. We are, after all, social creatures.
This, alongside needy clients and senior partners, arguably is one of the main reasons why in certain areas, such as law or business development, remote job opportunities are perceived to be very limited.
Will careers in the future require a foundation of traditional personal relationships?
Renowned authors such as Richard Susskind don’t think so. In his book “Online Courts and the Future of Justice”, prof. Susskind examines judicial courts not as a place, but as a service that can be done online.
What’s more, as recently as 20th of March 2020, The U.S. DoJ has ordered “maximum telework” for members of staff. It’s interesting to see what happens in the industry after COVID-19 turmoil ends, as we believe many more attorneys-at-law will see the benefits of remote work.
Other industries that require face to face communication are transforming. Real estate house showcasing is beginning to happen through 360 virtual tour projects, and startups that have built technologies allowing house and apartment plans to be available online have recently emerged.
Signals from those traditional, and seemingly resistant to digital transformation niches can be read as a good sign for the future workforce. Industries may be, in fact, able to accommodate employees of all ages and experiences and give them equal opportunities for career advancement.
Yes, currently there are no strong signs for that transformation, at least, not in the remote job marketplaces which continue to be dominated by companies native to digital environments.
However, with more and more studies being published, and voices being raised, we are bound for a change in the perception of what’s the best way to do our jobs.