It seems that a growing trend in the American workplace is the rise of the entrepreneur. Everyone in the workplace wants to start a business and revolutionize their industry, but this desire is about more than just creating a legacy. Who wouldn’t want to be their own boss, set their own schedule, and have autonomy about where and how they work? Unfortunately, not everyone should be an entrepreneur. Whether a person doesn’t want to take the risk of starting a company or lacks the business savvy, entrepreneurship isn’t the right call for certain types of people.
Luckily though, many of the perks of being an entrepreneur also come with remote work. Remote employees work when and where they want to. They don’t have to put on pants if they don’t feel like it. They can even travel the world if they want to, provided that they have good internet where they go.
There’s no doubt that remote work, or telecommunication jobs, have been a buzzing topic in the past few years, and it is a work structure that is growing in popularity. Even companies like Amazon and Apple (News - Alert) offer remote jobs for employees now, though they are limited and certainly not a defining feature of their company.
While many companies are experimenting with remote work, a few companies are carrying the torch for the movement. Below are 5 companies that are actively working to create more remote jobs, whether by providing resources for telecommunicating jobs or by being an example of remote work’s success in their respective industry:
Toptal is not only creating more remote jobs, but the company is 100 percent remote and doesn’t even have an office. Toptal is a platform to connect freelance developers with clients and recently expanded its network to include designers as well. Self-described as an “exclusive network,” Toptal is rightly proud of its rigorous screening process that only 3 percent of applicants pass, ensuring that clients are nothing short of thrilled by their experience with Toptal. Not only does the company create remote jobs at a massive scale (its network includes thousands of remote freelancers), but it also publishes a variety of free posts on the remote lifestyle, including how to stay healthy while working remote. With an estimated $80 million annual run rate for 2015, Toptal is proof of remote work’s potential for success and actively enables others to do the same.
Kaplan is an online education platform that practices what it preaches. If you can get a university degree online, then you should just as well be able to work online too. In an interview with Entrepreneur, Kaplan revealed that 85 percent of its workforce works from home, including instructors, tutors, and advisors. With over 21,000 employees, that is a huge figure. Kaplan offers online programs for K12, universities, SAT preparation, and even graduate programs in fields like nursing and law. With Kaplan’s presence in over 25 countries, the company is setting a precedent for remote work all over the world to young students and communities alike.
This company is the market leader in customer relations management, or CRM, and is one of the fastest growing enterprise software companies in the world. Formed in 1999, Salesforce has grown immensely and now rakes in over $5 billion a year. The company focused on building a cloud service for CRM, and their push to innovate in their field has paid dividends over the years, pulling in every-growing amounts of revenue and repeatedly winning awards. Many of Salesforce’s salesforce (ha) work from home after coming into their headquarters for a bootcamp, and Salesforce has one of the larger remote work forces out there, proving that companies can be at the forefront of innovation and success and have remote employees.
4. UnitedHealth Group
One of the largest health insurance providers in the world, UnitedHealth Group earned just over $130 billion in 2014 and has over 85 million patients worldwide. The company also happens to have a broad range of remote employees, from health care case managers, training consultants, administrative nurses, to policy writers. UnitedHealth Group earns a spot on this list because it is an industry leader in health care and is showing competitors that remote work is a viable model for health insurance companies everywhere.
Likely the least known company on this list, Remote.co is nonetheless doing as much as any of the companies on this list and without a big name to help them. Remote.co is quickly becoming the go-to resource for companies interested in trying out remote work. Founded by Sara Sutton Fell (who also founded FlexJobs, another proponent of telecommuting jobs), Remote.co offers a Q&A with 62 remote companies sharing their experience and tips on how to integrate remote work into a company. The site also regularly posts articles offering advice on all things work related. For a fee, companies looking to hire remote workers can post job descriptions on Remote.co to attract their audience. No other company on this list is doing as much to encourage companies to try remote work and making that transition as seamless as possible.