The remote revolution is alive and well, with millions of Americans electing to work remotely, either for a company or as self-employed individuals.
According to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com, 4.7 million U.S. employees (3.4% of the workforce) now work from home at least half the time. Additionally, 40% more U.S. employers offered flexible workplace options than they did in 2014.
Americans seem to approve of avoiding long commutes, working from the comfort of their own home, and getting a good-sized paycheck in the process. There are plenty of remote jobs that pay in the six-figure range, especially in the technology, health care, and business services sectors.
What remote jobs pay among the best? You can't go wrong with these at-home occupations.
The Highest Paying Remote Jobs
Estimated Salary: $180,000 to $290,000
It turns out that there's no shortage of people who want a fresh, professional opinion on their mental health and wellness. Psychiatrists can easily meet with their patients either face to face or via video, offer counsel and guidance, write up treatment programs, write studies and white papers, and moonlight as group counselors on a remote basis. Being adept at video conferencing technology helps, as does having a comfortable place to meet clients in a safe neighborhood.
2. National Sales Account Executive
Estimated Salary: $125,000 to $200,000
There's tons of money in sales, especially in sales management positions. That's why they pay for a national sales account executive is so robust. National sales managers earn their money, as they're responsible for their employer meeting revenue projections, digging up leads for their sales staff and keeping big client accounts satisfied. Yes, you can do all that in the comfort of your own home office, as many sales professionals work outside the office in the first place - it's one industry where working outside the office is encouraged, if not expected.
3. Senior Software Engineer
Estimated Salary: $125,000 to $175,000
Technology is one industry that has seen sizable growth in remote employees. That's the case with senior software engineers, who specialize in the research, analysis, implementation, and monitoring of company software design processes. Senior engineers are tasked with software development teams, so leadership ability and communication skills are necessary for the job.
4. Corporate Controller
Estimated Salary: $125,000 to $150,000
A corporate controller working remotely can also easily fulfill his or her obligations outside the workplace. A corporate controller steers a company's financial strategies and decisions, establishing, managing and tracking policies and procedures. An accounting or financial management background is needed for the job, but the work is critical toward a company's success, and the salary and benefits - even for remote workers - are ample.
5. Medical Director
Estimated Salary: $130,000 to $140,000
Medical directors can effectively work offsite, as well. Medical directors usually work at a health care company or in a medical role for larger companies with investments in the health care sector. It is a management role, as the medical director is usually tasked to lead teams in specific health care management roles, like at a nursing home or a hospital. Medical directors can certainly work at home but can expect to be called into the office for meetings and strategy sessions. Typically, a medical director needs to be board certified and have a degree related to health care management.
6. Data Analyst/Scientist
Estimated Salary: $115,000 to $135,000
With technology making it so easy for career professionals to work remotely, it's only natural for data scientists to work at home, on the computer. Data scientists are responsible for analyzing large amounts of raw data for potential in a specific market or sector.
Data analysts also need to strike a balance between the needed technical and non-technical elements of the job. You'll need the proper computer training and language background, know how to work with raw technical data and then be able to take an analytic approach to decipher what the data means and how a company can build a strategy to profit off data sets analyzed by a data scientist.
This is work that can be done remotely, although occasional face-to-face meetings are likely required, so it helps to live near your employer.
7. Information Security Manager
Estimated Salary: $110,000 to $130,000
With data and security fraud a legitimate issue across the business landscape, having a senior information security manager on hand to build a robust defense against data thieves can be a great source of comfort to companies who collect and store client data. That's where a company data security manager can help. The information security manager can work remotely, as the work is technical and much of it can be handled on a secure home computer.
Data security manager typically spend their day managing their company's data security strategies, testing system strength for potential breaches and running risk assessments on valuable company data. Data security management is a large role within a company, and thus some in-person time is necessary, although the bulk of the work can be done offsite.
8. Actuarial Analyst
Estimated Salary: $100,000 to $125,000
An actuarial analyst can easily turn his or her finance degree and statistical analysis background to land a highly-paid remote position.
Actuarial analysts typically work in the insurance sector. They use statistical models to calculate the possibilities and financial risk associated with insurance policies and then create accurate insurance policies for individual and institutional customers. An actuarial analyst may also engage in the review and analysis of high-cost events linked to Mother Nature, like hurricanes, major snowstorms, floods, drought, earthquakes, and even terror attacks.
As the bulk of the statistical analysis is digitally-based, the analyst can easily work and report in remotely and still earn a solid six-figure salary.
Estimated Salary: $100,000 and Up
Yes, many lawyers have to appear in court and also have to meet with clients and any partners on a face-to-face basis, but there's no reason an attorney can't conduct most of his or her business at home.
The remote component depends on what kind of law is practiced. For example, an attorney engaged in tax law or patent law may need to spend some time at the office working on policies and strategies with co-workers (although that work can be done remotely, as well.)
A lawyer who practices criminal law, like a local attorney handling a local criminal case like driving under the influence or domestic abuse cases can work from home, as long as that attorney has a clean and comfortable office to meet with clients. The same goes for divorce attorneys, who will have to meet with clients in person.
10. Writer/Content Producer
Estimated Salary: $50,000 to $100,000
Large companies, especially advertising agencies and marketing agencies, typically count on copywriters and content producers to create stellar copy for their clientele (think blogs, newsletters, ads, search engine optimization campaigns, ghostwriting projects, among other forms of client collateral.)
This work can easily be effectively handled remotely, although occasional on-site meetings and client strategy sessions are likely in play.
How to Land a Job as a Remote Career Professional
Whether you're already working in a professional capacity or are searching for work as a remote employee, you'll need to make a good case that your work can be completed off-site and that you'll work well with less direct supervision.
Fortunately, more and more companies are amenable to hiring or agreeing to remote work status. But you'll increase the odds of getting approved for remote work, or at least make it easier to accomplish, by taking the following steps:
Stress Your Experience
Companies and clients love to work with experts, and by "experts", we mean specialists with years of experience in a given field. Emphasize that experience when trying to go the remote route and be especially forward if you already have remote work experience in your field.
Emphasize Your Technical Skills
The vast majority of remote work is handled via computers and mobile devices these days. If you can attest to your skills using technology to do your job, like a senior security information specialist running company data risk assessments off-site, safely and effectively, you can boost your odds of landing the right remote job.
Expect Some Direct Questions - and Know How to Answer Them
Companies will be diligent as they engage with you about working remotely. That's because company decision-makers know they'll need to count on you to get the job done essentially out of sight. Consequently, expect to explain to a company or even a client if you're a lawyer or psychiatrist (for example) why you want to work at home.
Also, be candid about your potential work schedule, how you would manage any communications problems on the job, and be ready to discuss what you bring to the table as a valued remote employee.