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Tracking the rise in remote working

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It’s no surprise that the US has seen a huge increase in those working from home over the past few months. With the pandemic having a huge impact on how we work and socialize, it has forced us to find a new way of doing the day-to-day tasks we’ve never thought twice about.

Remote working was already on the rise, with workers wanting a better work-life balance and putting their wellbeing first. However, COVID has accelerated this demand for remote working, and we can now find more remote jobs than ever.

We took a look at the remote job listings on Indeed and the increase in remote working across the US, to see where COVID has made the biggest impact.

More cases means more remote work

States With The Most Remote Jobs

Currently, the states with the highest number of COVID cases are Florida, California, Texas and New York, and on inspection, we can see that these states are in the top for the number of remote jobs.

Florida has around 10,826 remote jobs currently advertised and is also one of the states with the highest number of COVID cases, with a total of 693,032* cases recorded and counting. We can also see that the other high risk states have a growing number of remote work vacancies, with California showing 7,944 remote jobs available and New York with 7,154 remote jobs.

When looking into the rise and fall of COVID cases being reported in each state, we can see that states such as Illinois, New Jersey and New York are all seeing a gradual rise in cases and are all in the top 10 highest risk states. When compared with the number of remote jobs being advertised, this rise in cases is reflected in the amount of remote work being listed, with Illinois listing 2,334 remote jobs and New Jersey 1,550.

However, some of the states with the lowest amount of remote jobs were:

Maine – 207
Delaware – 205
Vermont – 181
Hawaii – 170
Montana – 168
Rhode Island – 167
Alaska – 155
South Dakota – 133
North Dakota – 130
Wyoming – 109

Comparing these numbers with the number of COVID cases being reported in these states, we can see that states such as Vermont and Maine have the lowest number of reported cases across the country and other states such as Hawaii seeing a steady decline in cases. This shows that the less risk, the less need there is for workers within these states to switch to remote working.

Is COVID causing more people to look for remote work?

Another avenue we took a look at was the search volume of those actively looking for remote work online. When we assessed Google Trends data, we found that people in some of the lowest risk states were actually some of the most vigilant when it came to looking for remote jobs.

For example, Hawaii is one of the states that has a low number of COVID cases and a steady decline of cases being reported. They are also one of the lowest-rated states when it comes to the number of remote jobs being advertised. However, the searches in Hawaii for remote work has seen a 73.50% increase in Google Searches since the pandemic began.

The same can be seen for Alaska and New Mexico, with Alaska’s remote job search increasing by 37.50% and New Mexico’s by a staggering 118.90%.

Interestingly, some states saw a decrease in remote work searches, with Arkansas and Delaware reporting a -56.90% decrease and -52.60% decrease respectively. Even more intriguing is that one of the highest risk states, Texas, saw a -19.70% decrease in people searching for remote work, even though it is a state with some of the highest number of remote work availability.

New York and Los Angeles have the highest number of remote work opportunities

Within the results, we delve in a little deeper to break the states down further, to find out which cities in particular are adapting most to the new remote working strategy.


Table Showing US Cities With The Most Remote Jobs

The cities with the biggest number of remote job opportunities were:

New York – 1,693
Los Angeles – 1,086
Chicago – 1,052
Atlanta – 969
Austin – 789
Denver – 702
Boston – 683
Phoenix – 670
Seattle – 622
Philadelphia – 559

These cities, again, have seen a huge number of cases reported, or have seen a steady increase in cases, that has forced them to put further measures in place to stop the spread within the workplace. These are also the cities within the highest risk states that have the highest number of reported cases within their respective states, with New York City accounting for nearly 54% of the total reported cases within the state of New York and Los Angeles around 31% within the state of California.

On the other end of the scale, we can see that Middlebury, Vermont has the lowest number of remote roles available, with only 42 jobs listed. Middlebury has reported only 83 cases since the beginning of the pandemic and have seen a plateau in new cases reported over the last few months. Another example would be Manchester, New Hampshire, which has just 56 remote jobs available, and which accounts for only 7% of total cases reported in the state.

Is the rise in remote working temporary?

With all this data showing the correlation between the rise in cases and the rise in remote working jobs being advertised, it poses the question as to whether this surge in remote working is temporary or here to stay.

When we looked at the remote roles listed due to COVID specifically, we found that states such as California were the most influenced by the pandemic when it came to choosing to switch to remote working. With 7,944 total remote jobs being listed in California, 4,274 of those were directly due to COVID. A further 3,897 jobs were listed as entry-level in the state, showing that businesses continue to recruit for those that are entering the job market, but giving them the option to start remotely.

Map of US States With The Highest Number Of Entry Level Remote Jobs

Again, comparing the number and rise of cases reported in each state, with the amount of remote jobs being offered due to COVID, the main states making the much-needed shift are:

New York

These states also have the highest number of entry-level positions being advertised as remote, with Florida listing 8,503 entry-level remote positions, New York listing 5,213, California listing 3,897 and Texas listing 2,645. States such as Wyoming (61 entry-level listings), North Dakota (63) and once again Vermont (104) were all in the bottom 10 for states advertising remote entry-level positions.

When we go back to the states with the lowest number of remote working listings and lowest number of cases, we can see that states such as Vermont (78 listings), North and South Dakota (34 and 31 listings respectively) and Hawaii (50 listings) all have some of the lowest remote positions due to COVID. These same states also have the lowest number of entry-level remote positions listed, as there is a much lower risk for those looking to start in a new place of work in these states.

Overall we can see that COVID has had a dramatic impact on the need and desire for remote working opportunities, not just in the current workforce, but also for those looking to get started in their career. With a rise in entry-level positions, this could suggest a gradual transition into a more remote work environment across the US.

Here at Moneypenny, we provide Phone Answering and Business Live Chat Services to businesses across the US.

*COVID cases correct at the time of writing, 09/25/2020
Moneypenny analysed remote jobs on the 09/21/2020


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