One of the most common questions I get from readers is: “How do I find a work-from-home job for single moms?!”
I always tell these women to start with my friends at FlexJobs, the leading job board for telecommuting, part-time, flexible-time, and other alternative work arrangements that make such a big difference in families’ lives.
I’m always thrilled when women report they found work at home jobs for single moms.
I have been a work-at-home freelance writer and media professional for the past 12 years.
I always loved the flexibility the schedule afforded me, and since becoming a mom six years ago, I have felt so grateful that I have control over my time, location, client-base and general professional happiness. I want this for you, too.
But here are the highlights of why this is such a great arrangement:
- When the school calls to tell me my kid is sick, I rarely panic. Instead, I pick them up, drive them home, tuck them into bed with the various remedies, videos, and books. While the recuperate or nap, I can usually work nearby.
- A bazillion snow days last year did not ruin my life.
- The countless half-days of school (really, can’t the schools be open for a full week already!?) don’t require Olympic feats of schedule re-arranging.
- When my mom came to visit last month I skipped out of work in the middle of the morning to pick her up at the airport. Nothing like working your own hours, on your own terms.
- When my mom came to visit I kept Lucas home from school that day. He joined me at La Guardia Airport (super-exciting for a 4-year-old!) and then spend the day with his grandma.
- I can throw the requisite piñata birthday party at the daycare at 2 p.m. on a Wednesday.
- Every day I enjoy making myself a chopped salad lunch in my own kitchen. Not only does this make me happy, it saves money from eating out with co-workers on a daily basis.
- I don’t spend a lot of money on clothes or time shopping for clothes because I don’t need them. The cat could give a crap what I wear to work.
- I can run to the post office in the middle of the morning when there are no lines.
- I exercise almost every day during business hours.
- I use business hours to get my hair cut.
- I use business hours to go to the gyno.
- I use business hours to shop for the kids’ birthday gifts and hide them throughout the house.
- I can meet a friend for breakfast and didn’t have to lie to the boss about my car not starting.
- I drop off my kids at school most days.
- I pick up my kids from school most days.
- I’m room-mother for my daughter’s class and chaperone them on school field trips once or twice per year.
- Because I’m home all the time I’m friendly with the mailman. And FedEx guy, my super, the servers in the cafe downstairs from my apartment and my elderly neighbors — all of which makes my neighborhood feel like home.
- I sign for my neighbor’s UPS delivery which makes me happy.
- When I have a hankering for pasta e Fagioli soup in the middle of the morning I start simmering the beans right then and there so it was ready for that evening’s supper.
- Because I’m self-employed I have total flexibility to try out new things in my business like building out my radio show and list-building promotions. I have total freedom and the resulting fun. Also:
- Last year I spent a bunch of money on a redesign, marketing course, and new headshots. And I don’t have to validate those decisions to anyone.
- This month I signed a few new clients and can afford to set really, really high-income goals because I don’t have a boss to tell me what my salary is limited to.
- Helped out a half-dozen professional contacts in varying capacities because that is what I like to do and that is how you grow a business (but is harder to do when your time is committed to an employer).
- Every week I spend business hours investing unbillable hours in my business: receiving media training, hosting a radio show, blogging, joining networking meetings — all things that, again, can be tough to justify to a boss but are critical to professional success.
- Do what I want to do at work to do every day.
- Make pediatrician and dentist appointments for my kids and didn’t worry about taking off work.
- Felt my heartbreak when a mom told me she “doesn’t really know what is going on” in her daughter’s life because she and her husband get home from work at 6, and even that doesn’t leave much time for casual chatting.
- Wore comfortable (or no) shoes nearly every day.
- Feel proud that I set a positive example of work and business and life for my children.
When I urge moms to keep a foot in the professional world, I often get a lot of pushback.
I hear that it’s impossible to maintain a career in less than 50 hours per week, or that childcare is prohibitively expensive. I am fortunate that I found a career early on that allows me to do all of the above and also support a family.
But nearly every industry is moving towards contract and freelance work, while part-time and telecommuting positions are on the rise. There are tons of opportunities out there — and countless ways to make your own opportunities.
Don’t get me wrong, it is always a struggle to do the single-mom juggle. But if you have a grip on your time, the chaos goes down, your quality of life goes up and your hair has never looked better.
Do YOU want to work from home?
Studies find the majority of professional moms prefer to work — but also identify the ideal work situation to include more family time and a flexible schedule. But where do you find these jobs? The answer surprises many people.
Most people know that customer service and data entry jobs are largely done virtually.
But did you know that if you need to call your pediatrician’s after-hours nurse line, those nurses are most likely working from home offices?
Virtual nurses–it’s true! And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
8 surprising work-from-home jobs for moms:
Thanks to the Internet, there are a lot of jobs which are going strictly online, which means a lot of opportunities for moms to work at home.
Here is a sampling of 8 work-at-home jobs in a range of industries. These jobs range from entry-level to experienced.
Virtual bookkeeping jobs offer part-time and full-time schedules.
The typical duties of a virtual bookkeeper include reconciling accounts payable and receivable, month-end financials, administering payroll and benefits, and tax-related assistance. For any moms with previous experience in bookkeeping, accounting, and related fields, these jobs are an excellent option to work from home.
When searching, look for related job titles like accounting clerk, sales manager, bookkeeper, operations manager, office assistant, and accountant.
Working with companies to improve their search engine results and performance, Web Search Evaluators work part-time, flexible schedules.
For moms who are avid Internet users with experience using different web browsers and navigating a variety of content, these jobs are ideal. The best candidates also have a broad interest and current knowledge of web-based culture, media, sports, news, and business.
You’ll run searches and evaluate results, applying the standards you’ve learned during the training and practice periods offered by these employers.
Virtual Admins or VAs as they are often referred to, provide administrative support to companies, agencies, or even individuals, either on a freelance contract basis or as a telecommuting employee role.
Moms interested in working from home as virtual admins can also create their own businesses and offer a variety of virtual services like customer service, accounting, scheduling, word processing and sales-related support tasks.
Related job titles to be on the lookout for include administrative assistant and customer service representative.
Copywriting is a special form of writing that involves writing a promotional website or print content to help a business earn more revenue for their products and services.
Copywriters are also expected to provide useful, informative information related to a particular subject or product. Similar job titles include copy editor, online marketer, content writer, and freelance writer.
If you’re a mom with a strong sales background and excellent writing skills, then copywriting may be a great avenue to earn additional money on a freelance, work-from-home basis.
If you spend a LOT of time on social media, understand the ins-and-outs of each platform, and have experience managing this type of marketing for companies, virtual social media management jobs are a great option.
People who do well in these jobs like to engage people in lively conversation and provide interesting links to articles, videos, and other media to attract website visitors to a company’s website or try out a product or service.
Excellent customer service and communication skills are a must for these positions, which offer part-time or full-time schedules, and freelance options.
Other job titles include community manager, multimedia coordinator, social media specialist, and social media copywriter.
Credit card companies, travel, and hospitality companies hire travel consultants to assist corporate clients with travel planning, booking, itineraries, and emergency assistance.
These jobs are completely virtual, requiring the consultant to work over phone, email, chat, and sometimes social media.
With full-time and part-time schedules, moms with excellent customer service skills and a desire to help others will find success in these roles.
Translators, also hired as interpreters, are fluent in more than one language, ranging from something as common as Spanish to as unique as Tamil.
These people with medical and legal organizations, publishing houses, educational institutions, television and movie production companies, and other businesses. and are responsible for helping two or more parties communicate through language barriers.
For medical and legal translation, experience in the medical or legal fields is a must.
Other job titles to search for include language tutor, business translator, telephone interpreter, medical interpreter, and captioner.
For moms with experience in teaching and education, it’s more possible than ever to find virtual teaching positions both in K-12 education and at universities.
People with online teaching jobs should be able to relate well to students, craft lesson plans and develop curricula, and utilize the phone, internet email and instant messenger to communicate.
The typical certifications and teaching experience are required for virtual teaching jobs, and related job titles include a high school teacher, virtual teacher, course mentor, student mentor, and adjunct faculty.
If you’re considering a work-from-home job, be open to the variety of surprising opportunities out there.
For the chance to ditch your commute, spend more time with your kids, and even find a little time to relax yourself, ask your employer, friends, and neighbors about how they found their telecommute jobs.
If these 8 jobs don’t tickle your fancy, don’t worry. There are still plenty of other options.
In fact, there are at least 100 other choices.
Check out the list of 100 top companies with remote jobs below.
Most of these companies post positions on FlexJobs, which reports the top industries with telecommute positions are IT, healthcare and sales.
These run the range from entry-level gigs to full-time staff positions with high salaries; all that you can do mostly from home.
Are you a stay-at-home mom terrified about re-entering the workforce? Don’t be. Here’s some practical advice about getting into the game — and into a professional career that you love after staying home with children.
THE TOP 100 COMPANIES OFFERING WORK AT HOME JOBS (WHICH ARE MOMMY-APPROVED)
- Sutherland Global Services
- UnitedHealth Group
- U.S. Department of Agriculture
- Working Solutions
- Kelly Services
- CACTUS Communications
- American Express
- First Data
- CACI International
- A Place for Mom
- Dell SecureWorks
- World Travel Holdings
- University of Maryland University College
- Allergan Inc
- U.S. Department of Transportation
- CSI Companies
- Robert Half
- Red Hat
- Adobe Systems
- Overland Solutions
- BCD Travel
- Connections Education
- McKesson Corporation
- Thermo Fisher Scientific
- Haynes & Company
- Pharmaceutical Product Development Inc.
- IT Pros Philadelphia
- Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
- Sungard Availability Services
- Altegra Health
- GE – General Electric
- Western Governors University
- Grand Canyon University
- Walden University
- HD Supply
- Perficient Inc.
- Wells Fargo
- Symantec Corporation
- Real Staffing
- Science Applications International Corporation – SAIC
- AmerisourceBergen Corporation
- Hartford Financial Services Group
- SRA International
- Citizens Financial Group
- CVS Health
- American Heart Association
- BMC Software
- inVentiv Health
- Rosetta Stone
- Erie Insurance Group
- Achieve Test Prep
- CDK Global
- U.S. Department of the Interior
Want to explore more work at home jobs?
Check out FlexJobs deep listings here.
These are only a handful of the hundreds of companies who will allow you to work-from-home, but maybe you don’t want to be tied to the company.
Maybe you want to start your own business. That’s great, too! I’m obviously an advocate.
How to carve your own path (start today!)
Interested in being a work-at-home freelance single mom? Not even sure where to begin because you’re now discovering there are almost too many opportunities?
Here is the rundown of how I got started:
I bought a domain name (that is the URL of your blog, like WealthySingleMommy.com) at GoDaddy.com
I then signed up with DreamHost as my server (if your blog is a house, the host/server is the town in which it resides).
Like most personal blogs, mine is built on WordPress. Make sure you go with WordPress.ORG (not .com). This is really important. It would be really lame if my URL was www.wealthysingleommy.blogspot.com. You don’t want that.
Then you need a basic design. No need to spend a bunch of money when you start out. I bought an affordable one at Elegant Themes — they have lots of really pretty ones.
Sign up for a service to collect email addresses and send emails. I use Aweber, one of the most popular services. I like it because it is easy to use and has lots of design options.
Images on your blog are at least as important as the words. People are visual before they are linguistic (think of your kids – they could identify stuff by sight before words). I like DepositPhotos for buying photos and other images.
When it comes to building the actual business, I started using QuickBooks, which is awesome (for years and years I had a really ghetto accounting system involving an Excel worksheet, Word doc invoices, and email.
If you’re not a fan of creating your own business or working for yourself, there are PLENTY of options for working at home as a single mom.
DO YOU HAVE A GREAT WORK AT HOME JOB? WHAT IS THE COMPANY? ARE THEY HIRING? SHARE IN THE COMMENTS!