Search Remotely In the News October 25, 2022
[Update] How This Online Remote Job Portal Kept Growing After A CEO Change
Tonya Mead Published: October 25th, 2022
Hello again! Remind us who you are and what business you started.
The last time we met, Search Remotely was headed by Christian Carella, the founder. He has since accepted a role with Peloton as Lead IT Support Engineer.
I’m the new CEO, Tonya Mead, PhD with a background in corporate training, behavioral sciences, and human resources. Search Remotely is a marketplace where remote workers can search for jobs, learn new skills by enrolling in our online academy, and get hired for a remote job. Employers use our platform to source top talent locally, regionally, or across the globe.
A few changes were made to improve the employer-client experience. We specially design images unique for the job listing and post them to our social media accounts. Further, we also offer an internationally scoped background screening service.
Finally, we’ve expanded our applicant screening process so that we will interview targeted candidates before passing their resumes on to the employer, saving time and onboarding costs. We offer these services at little to no additional cost to our existing program.
Our key performance metrics such as the average number of job listings per month vary from 100 to 300, with featured listings in the low double digits. This represents solid, steady growth in a crowded marketplace of a remote work promotion. You must remember, when this company was founded, there were only a handful of online marketplaces that emphasized remote work. It wasn’t even a widely accepted term in 2018. As we began to gain traction, other entrants entered the market so we have had to do more to maintain our position.
Tell us about what you’ve been up to. Has the business been growing?
Just last year, Search Remotely was recognized by the International Trade Council as a top placer for eCommerce. We strive to maintain our position in the crowded remote job search marketplace by staying at the forefront of innovation and service.
We’ve maintained our #1 Ranking position for our targeted keywords organically and expanded our #1 Ranking position to include additional keywords. See below.
We continue to earn and receive solid reviews from independent third-party entities like Knoji and Sur.ly. You can read more about our ratings here.
Our two core service areas for the job seeker and the employer, we have upped our game so to speak. So that during the projected economic downturn we can increase sales or at the very minimum hold our own.
We are improving the jobseeker experience and striving to increase their chances of obtaining a remote job. So we’ve designed in-house classes available online to help job seekers acquire the remote skills needed. We are producing 3 new classes. We’ve also lowered our prices for our three best-selling e-books to low or no cost. While we’ve managed a Facebook Job Seeker Support Group for a few years, we didn’t market it, so we created a QRC code and posted it to the front page of our website.
And, we have expanded our social media presence to serve as the foundation for our podcasts to be introduced.
We also wanted to improve the employer-client experience. We specially design images unique for the job listing to include our client’s logo for added visibility. We post it to all of our social media accounts and business profiles.
Further, we can professionally translate job listings into English and have done so to obtain international clients looking to expand in the US market. We also offer an internationally scoped background screening service.
We’ve expanded our applicant screening process so that we will interview targeted candidates before passing their resumes on to the employer, increasing the chances of finding the perfect candidate for our clients, and saving time and onboarding costs. We offer these services at little to no additional cost to our existing program.
We have improved our branding. We had excellent name recognition before I was appointed CEO, but focus group feedback indicated that we needed to add the (dot).com at the end of our logo to point new visitors who are excited and heard about our offerings to the exact location of our platform. We also increased our 24 /7 accessibility by purchasing a highly memorable phone number 1-9713-REMOTE.
We hired a team of marketing pros to take a look at our homepage banners. They got back to us and said that the Bahamas, pina colada laid-back theme probably isn’t the right theme to push our remote job seeker and remote first employer services.
We needed to re-enforce our informal motto of “Work hard. Hustle harder. Play optional.” Employers are looking for remote workers who increase productivity from end to end. Job seekers are looking for remote employers who reward top producers with remote work options and the autonomy to get the job done.
Give back to the Community
Our ultimate goal is to do good while reaping solid financial returns and increasing market share. SearchRemotely (dot) com is a division of Shared Knowledge LLC. In June 2022, the company was recognized by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration as an Apprenticeship Ambassador.
As an Apprenticeship Ambassador Search Remotely will use its platform to increase access and support for underrepresented and underserved populations in Registered Apprenticeships leading to remote work. This includes women, youth, people of color, rural communities, justice-involved individuals, and people with disabilities.
As a community service, Search Remotely will do its part to increase the awareness of rural and inner-city job applicants on the endless possibilities of working remotely through training and workshops.
Other Marketing Developments
Other marketing developments include the expansion of affiliations with other entities to create synergy and build upon the success of other companies that have already designed well-established products, services, and tools for generating revenue.
Our primary objective is to ensure that the services of our affiliates are closely aligned with ours. We have had long-standing relationships with Linkedin Learning, SafetyWing Insurance, SkyRoam Wifi, Running Remote Conference, and the Freedom Business Summit. To position the company for monumental growth we’ve established affiliations with many of the major online educational companies, resume writing, and critique services. We hope to further expand our offerings so that we may ultimately become a one-stop shop for remote job seekers and remote employers.
What have been your biggest challenges in the last year?
As a company, we have four big challenges.
The first challenge has been improving website speed and keeping the website fresh. We strive to do so while also maintaining the visual quality of our images and expanding upon our content.
The second challenge has been maintaining website security and to prevent fraudulent purchases. This is perhaps a huge concern for any web-based platform.
The third challenge is monitoring our social media accounts and private groups to prevent scams and to scrutinize the legitimacy of any independently posted job listing shared by members of our private group.
The fourth challenge is replicating my engagement with someone else who will build rapport with commenters on our social media accounts and members of our private Facebook group. The peaks and valleys in social engagement are directly related to my involvement with the members who comment frequently.
I have had two challenges.
One is that I am a private person and have maintained some sort of anonymity while providing services to my employer clients and job seekers. Well, three weeks ago I got called out. One of the members of our private Facebook group which I administer commented that my profile picture was probably fake. So, I started to post more relatable photos on my social media pages to show that yes, I am human and very much real.
The second item could be a challenge, but I don’t consider it so. I am an American of color and a female so there may be someone out there who may not see my potential or acknowledge my accomplishments.
Therefore, I’m hoping to serve as a role model to others out there not usually considered leaders of technology companies and platforms. Not only do I manage developers, data analysts, and recruiters; but I have often written code myself, use SQL to query large data sets, and even review security protocols as a certified forensic hacking investigator.
What’s in the plans for the upcoming year, and the next 5 years?
We would like to transform our Facebook group to a monetization engine where we alert members to our in-house produced job seeker training content. Right now we have about 1,500 members daily at its peak who actively engage with Search Remotely and other members of the private group. We would like to increase engagement numbers exponentially and avoid some of the valleys of low engagement. See our engagement chart here.
When purchasing an existing business, it is tempting to make a lot of changes from day one. Don’t. Fully analyze how the business works, its shortcomings, and its assets.
What’s the best thing you read in the last year?
Advice for other entrepreneurs who might be struggling to grow their business?
I have three tips.
First, when purchasing an existing business, it is tempting to make a lot of changes from day one. Don’t. Fully analyze how the business works, its shortcomings, and its assets. When you’ve determined it necessary to make a change or tweak a business process or platform; think it over for at least one month before committing to making a major change.
Second, help others. This may seem like an afterthought but it isn’t. We endeavor to genuinely recognize other entrepreneurs who provide excellent customer service or deliver superb products to our company.
To manifest increased sales, profitability, and expanded market share, it’s important to be supportive of entrepreneurs that you someday hope to emulate.
When presented with an opportunity, we jumped at the chance to provide a video testimony for the RankMath SEO tool that we used to dramatically improve our metrics. Our video will be published on RankMath’s YouTube Channel.
We use our global platform to acknowledge other go-getters in the field of remote work with our “Day in the Life of a Remote Worker” Series. So far we have interviewed 14 movers and shakers ranging from remote work job coaches to CEOs of major WordPress plugins as well as YouTubers with several hundred thousand viewers.
Finally, consider using a multi-pronged approach to your day. This means that each day should be evenly split between the various functions of your company: sales/marketing, technology, customer service, logistics, and financing. To focus too heavily on one area for an extended period will be to the detriment of other areas. Having a well-rounded team is of utmost importance.
Where can we go to learn more?
Search Remotely In the News May 31, 2022
First of all, how are you and your family doing?
Tonya Mead: We are doing great. We are coming to terms with the changes brought about by COVID-19. The good news is that we are beginning to travel more with the US. We just returned from Hawaii after it opened up a bit. Traveling internationally has been more difficult. Thanks for asking.
-September 2022 update. Things are slowly getting back to normal. With the rumored advent of an economic slowdown or global recession, our company, Search Remotely.com is re-doubling its efforts to get remote job seekers searching for a remote job into the ranks of the permanently employed.
Tell us about you, your career, and how you joined Search Remotely.
Tonya Mead: I have 15 years of experience as an analyst of data, human behavior, and organizational systems. I have applied this extensive knowledge to design quality control systems and investigative protocols. These innovative systems grounded in information technology and data analytics are then used by state governments to improve performance and foster greater accountability.
I made a major investment in this company based on support from Voya Financial. I have taken over the reins as CEO. The founder Christian Carella of Search Remotely, is a serial entrepreneur. He was interested in embarking on another adventure that would require a bulk of his time. Because I have life experience living and working in Europe and South America, gaining proficiency in other spoken languages as well as working remotely between two continents, this opportunity just felt right.
It is wonderful that the technology platform provided by Search Remotely removes the barriers to remote work, provides a marketplace of job opportunities from around the world, helps employers and recruiters scale up quickly, and offers a job seeker service to help newbies get into the game.
–September 2022 update. I am thrilled about the prospect of growing this company from a small boutique firm with global reach to an international conglomerate. We have a distinct competitive advantage of having experience working in different countries and speaking proficiently in different languages. Hard work pays off in this area as we have maintained a client who requires that we expertly translate foreign language job listings and screen pre-applicants prior to submission of their resumes for consideration.
How does your company market its product/services online?
Tonya Mead: We have used LinkedIn referral services. But most of our leads are received organically based on word of mouth. The relationships built have built a solid reputation of consistently providing high quality, customer focus, and integrity.
—September 2022 update. We are hoping to expend considerable time marketing our company but first we consider the needs of our present clients as foremost to any new initiative. That also includes improving the user experience on our website <https://searchremotely.com>>
We are also slowly integrating our parent company, Shared Knowledge LLC product offerings into the SearchRemotely platform. More on this will be discussed later. But in the meantime, I can say that we are rolling out our in-house and online job seeker classes and webinars to help those most in need of guidance on how best to obtain a remote job.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how did you get through it?
Tonya Mead: The coronavirus deeply impacted most businesses globally. My business before I purchased Search Remotely was no offering. Before the purchase of Search Remotely, I had managed and operated Shared Knowledge LLC; but as many of the core product offerings relied upon face-to-face services: NLP programming, training, data analytics, and on-the-ground investigations, my advisory board and I felt the need to make a significant shift due to changes in market conditions.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to manage your online marketing?
Tonya Mead: For once, I think I have hit that sweet spot where my knowledge, skills, interests, and abilities are fully aligned with the company’s core offerings. The primary aim of Search Remotely is to raise the awareness of all individuals, whether they reside in a remote village in Honduras, the ghettoes of Chicago, DC, Los Angeles, or Baltimore, or whether they live in remote rural areas of India, Africa, Mississippi or West Virginia. Or whether they are affluent world travelers or ex-pats in Switzerland or Luxembourg. Search Remotely is the place to search for and find remote job opportunities. It offers a learning platform for newbies and seasoned remote workers to rev up their digital skillset and improve their employability and marketability in the virtual world of remote work. Finally, Search Remotely really wants to be the go-to forum where employers can go to scale up their remote teams effectively through recruitment.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Tonya Mead: Competition is vital. It is the basis for innovation and societal change. Without which society can become decadent. We plan to continue to build upon the momentum-driven since the inception of Search Remotely. Even though we thrive on healthy competition, we believe in the importance of serving society. Each day, we ask these questions, “how can we help others realize their dreams? How can we help them achieve their divine destiny?” There are people who are alone and have no mentors. All they have is the desire to better themselves and the world in which they live. Search Remotely wants to be the conduit.