It?s not them, it?s me
Photo by Taylor on Unsplash
As a remote work advocate, I try to keep my finger on the pulse of all things remote, freelance, distributed, and agile. And a bunch of other terms for work from home. Something I?ve done longer than many startup Founders have been alive. Back when it was most often referred to as telecommuting.
A couple of years ago, I paid for a subscription to FlexJobs. I was in the market and figured it couldn?t hurt to have access to a curated list of companies hiring remotely. They sold me by posting jobs for anyone to see, but the company information was hidden behind their paywall of around $15 a month for access (less if you pay for 3 months or 1 year upfront). So I ponied up the cash.
Remote jobs that are full-time and part-time
Employee and freelance jobs
On-site jobs including flexible and alternative schedules
All professional, all vetted, all with a flexible work option.
? FlexJobs Perks
A Bit of History
FlexJobs was founded in 2007 in Boulder, Colorado by Sara Sutton Fell. A remote worker herself, Sara was frustrated with finding legitimate work-from-home opportunities. So she started up FlexJobs, a subscription job search site that, according to the FlexJobs website and subsequent interviews with Fell, curates each and every listing on their site, and the rest is internet business history!
Photo by Arturo Castaneyra on Unsplash
Back when remote work scams consisted of stuffing envelopes from home, I learned very quickly that there is no shortcut to your dreams. Unless you have an eccentric rich uncle financing your latest startup or maybe win the lottery.
While FlexJobs and other sites like them, such as Virtual Vocations, can be useful for someone searching for flexible work, I?ve found the majority of the jobs they post are available on the web for free. That is if a person is willing to do the legwork.
I recently wrote an article on ways to find remote jobs and each one of the sites I recommended is free to use and search for jobs. The hiring organization pays to post their job ads, rather than double-dipping by having both the job searcher and the hiring company pay to play.
7 Tips for Finding a Remote Job
Many people looking for remote jobs are told not to pay to find a job. ?It?s a scam or worse,? they say, you?re information will be stolen or sold!?
To be clear, FlexJobs is NOT a scam.
FlexJobs is a legitimate job board for flexible work. Everything from part-time to freelance to hybrid remote to full-time remote work is offered on the site. I just don?t want to pay for something I can find myself.
Another reason I?m not renewing my subscription has nothing to do with money. I?m interested in various types of remote work. But I am nomadic and many of the listings are from corporations that require a ?quiet place to work? and the ability to ?take calls in a quiet environment.?
That tells me that my nomadic lifestyle is not a good fit. I also simply never want to work for a large (or even mid-sized) corporate conglomerate ever again. One with top-down management styles fueled by EOS traction statements and rich fat cats at the top of the food chain.
A few other annoyances of the site have to with actual curation and actual numbers of job listings. In my time on the site, which expires in a few weeks since I chose not to renew, I?ve seen positions that have been filled (but are ?new? listings on the site) and been shown the same ?new? postings over and over but posted as ?new? on different dates or with different locations.
Screenshot by AUthor from FlexJobs Site
There are also a few listings that are tagged as full-time remote, but when I read the job description, they are either part-time or not 100% remote-friendly. On top of the inconsistent tagging, there are several questionable companies allowed to post on the site. Companies that I call Work Mills, like Lionbridge.
Screenshot by Author on FlexJobs site
They are mostly legit companies but the majority have been accused of not paying workers for approved hours and bullying tactics such as firing employees for questioning pay or lack thereof.
Screenshot by Author from Reddit
My choice to leave FlexJobs is based on my own experiences. Many people get hired for remote jobs using the site all the time. Their ratings are generally outstanding. It really can be a useful tool. But it?s simply not useful for me. There truly is a plethora of free resources out there to search for a remote job. So I don?t see the point of paying $15 a month to see a bunch of listings that don?t match my personal needs.
Sorry, FlexJobs, it?s not you, it?s me.