These industries are improving at the fastest rates and offer the most promising prospects, with a growth of more than 10% since January, according to FlexJobs.


“It’s a growth industry” originally began out as a positive spin for those looking to invest or for job seekers and eventually evolved as dripping with irony. Journalists use it in headlines too, referring to everything from kitchen gardens to Islamophobia to cancer as “growth industries.”

It’s now made its way full circle and means just that—an industry growing exponentially faster than others. Jobs are on the way to recovery, just as organizations are, as the pandemic slows. FlexJobs has announced 13 flexible career categories that have grown more than 10% since 2021 began. 

“Numerous signs suggest the economy and job market is improving, including an increase in hiring,” said Sara Sutton, founder and CEO of FlexJobs. “Our data reflects this as well, particularly within certain industries. As this list demonstrates, flexible job postings have picked up in a variety of careers, signaling that recovery is strengthening for knowledge workers across the board.”

SEE: Tech jobs: Recruiting levels increase as new startups gather pace (TechRepublic)

The following compilation of career categories are flex jobs—remote, hybrid, flexible schedule, part-time or freelance—using data from January to March 2021:

  1. Virtual Administration 
  2. HR & Recruiting
  3. Nonprofit
  4. SEO/SEM
  5. Bookkeeping
  6. Marketing
  7. Call Center
  8. Bilingual
  9. Social Media
  10. Writing
  11. Graphic Design
  12. Advertising & PR
  13. Project Management

Steps to get noticed and get the job you want

FlexJobs also offered a detailed list to help with the job search process and how potential candidates can get noticed:

  1. Target your job search to the position you’re most interested in, as well as the companies you’d like to work for. Don’t waste your time applying for “anything and everything,” FlexJobs recommends, as “you’re far less likely to find success.”
  2. With each query or application, customize your cover letter and tailor your resume. This doesn’t mean an entire overhaul, just be sure you explain why you are the right person for this job and include examples to increase the likelihood you hear back from interested employers.
  3. Work your network: a professional network is a great resource and you’re likely to find jobs not posted on job boards or with companies you may have never considered.
  4. Use keywords from the posting in your application. Do not use fancy resume fonts that are hard to read.
  5. Use a professional email address that includes some version of your name from a reputable email service (i.e., Gmail).
  6. Always include a cover letter with applications, unless the job posting explicitly says not to. It’s one more chance for you to sell yourself and inject a little personality into your application.
  7. Proofread your information, resume, summary and application before you hit “submit.” In addition to running spell check, consider asking someone responsible to review your materials first.
  8. Review your social media, know what you should and shouldn’t include. The vast majority of employers will do an online search of candidates they’re interested in. Or, consider creating two separate versions, one personal and one private.
  9. Your LinkedIn profile is something many employers review, so be sure yours is up to date and complete. This means using a current picture of yourself as well as making sure everything is well-written. Consider writing a blog post that showcases your expertise and experience in your field.
  10. Link to your personal website. It’s not necessarily relevant for all careers, but for some (i.e., marketing, creative, web design), you can show off your work samples to potential employers.
  11. Don’t wait to apply if you see a job you think will be ideal. Apply as soon as you can. But even if you’re seeing it after it’s been posted for a week or two, it’s still not too late to apply.
  12. Always follow directions. Follow instructions exactly to gain the approval of the hiring manager.
  13. Follow up on your applications. This way, you can make sure the hiring manager received your materials, answer questions they might have for you and get on their radar.
  14. Avoid job search burnout. Don’t burn through the day applying until you’re exhausted, because your last submission will never be as fresh as your first. Know when to take breaks to recharge. 

“It is still a turbulent job market, so I recommend job seekers really focus on honing their skills––both the hard skills needed for the job, but also overall soft skills that are important in the professional world,” Sutton said.

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