As more people began working from home, a somewhat surprising trend also emerged: working two remote jobs. Sometimes this is also referred to as “job stacking” or “overemployed.”
You may have even thought about working two jobs yourself, which is why you are reading this article!
But is working two jobs a good idea when you are remote? What are the legal and ethical views on this? And if you did want to explore this, how do you go about balancing the work effectively?
Let’s dive into these questions and more!
Can You Have Two Remote Jobs at the Same Time?
Before we go any further, you might be wondering if you really can have two remote jobs at the same time.
Yes, you absolutely can have two remote jobs and there are many people who have been successful in doing so.
In fact, there have been numerous personal stories in some large publications sharing why people have two remote jobs, how they are managing that, and those individuals’ views on it. For example, this one from Business Insider.
But let’s get a few basic questions out of the way you might have here before going further.
Is working two remote jobs illegal?
While there is no law against working two full-time remote jobs, it becomes more of an ethical question and is also up to an employer as to what they may do if they found out.
Most employers don’t mind if you have a side hustle or other part-time job, it’s actually pretty common today. I’ve had side hustles since the day I entered the workforce after graduating college.
But working multiple remote jobs is a bit different. And there is a potential risk that you may be terminated if an employer finds out you working simultaneously elsewhere. Of course, you can be safe if you were transparent and told them upfront about it.
Do I have to tell my employer about a second job?
Generally, you don’t have to tell an employer about a second job and that is your personal business. However, you should check your hiring documents and the employee handbook to ensure nothing is stated there.
Often, you may find it stipulated in an employer’s handbook about not allowing another full-time job or even side hustles.
Personally, I won’t work for a company that blocks a side hustle. I once was on an interview where they asked if I would give up my side hustle at the time, even though there was no conflict of interest. No thanks!
Granted, an additional full-time job is a bit different. So it’s likely an employer will view a second full-time job more negatively.
And keep in mind, most of the U.S. states are Employment At Will, which means legally they don’t need any reason to terminate your employment with them. So a second remote job could get you fired.
Pros And Cons Of Working Two Remote Jobs
Before you really consider your plan to work two remote jobs, you’ll certainly want to understand the pros and cons of pursuing this. You’ll also want to examine your career goals and personality type, to ensure this is something you should do and can handle.
- Another full-time salary.
- Improves your skills and experiences.
- Expand your professional network.
- Helps you reach financial goals faster.
The main advantage of working two remote jobs is purely financial, with good reason. According to the data, 64% of the U.S. population was living paycheck to paycheck in 2022.
And we also continue to see the costs of everything rise, while salaries aren’t keeping pace. It’s a frustrating reality younger generations are dealing with and it shouldn’t have to be this way.
So is it really any surprise why people consider working two remote jobs? It’s the best way to get ahead financially and support one’s livelihood.
While the financial aspect is pretty important, there are still quite a few cons to consider before working multiple remote jobs. Mostly, how it impacts your health and overall career.
- May cause burnout and more stress.
- Quality of work performance may decrease.
- Can get you fired from both jobs.
- Loss of a good work-life balance.
- Perpetuates a negative stigma about remote work.
- Mixing up your work between the two jobs, sending wrong files or emails, etc.
While the disadvantages here can make you pause, you might find the financial gain too good to resist. And if so, then you may be ready for two remote jobs.
How Do You Juggle Two Remote Jobs?
So how do you balance working multiple remote jobs effectively? Below are some tips to help you if you decide to pursue this option. And keep in mind that two jobs require some adjustment and schedule navigating at first, but you can find a solid groove.
Also, not everyone will be cut out for this and that’s okay! You’ll need to have these kinds of skills:
- Highly organized.
- Great multitasker.
- Calculated risk taker.
- Specialized skills.
1. Get organized beforehand.
When you have two remote jobs, you are going to have different projects, tasks, and deadlines to meet. So think ahead about how you plan to be organized.
What hours can you realistically do? How much work can you take on in a job without impacting performance? How will you use your calendar efficiently? Create a process and schedule for yourself that won’t overwhelm you.
2. Find a flexible second job.
To work two jobs well, you will need a second job with flexibility that is also less demanding. Maybe overnight remote jobs or those companies where your exact work time doesn’t matter.
If you have the exact same time schedule with many tasks, managing your time is going to be difficult between two remote jobs. Is it impossible? No, as there are people working two jobs simultaneously, but it’s not easy.
Understand the scope of the second job you interview for and where you might have less overlap with the other. Finding a good balance will be critical to success.
3. Have a clear goal.
What is your goal for working two remote jobs? Think about the reason you want to spend your time with another full-time gig. Whether it’s to get out of debt, reach financial freedom sooner, or increase your skills exponentially – have a clear reason for having two jobs.
If you don’t have the motivation or a reason for working multiple jobs, it will be much easier for you to give up or burn out completely.
4. Find your routine.
When you work remotely, getting yourself into a good routine keeps you on task and focused. So it’s even more important when you have two remote jobs or risk failing quickly. For this, plan your days, create to-do lists for the week ahead, and use tools or apps to make it easier.
5. Don’t overachieve.
This might sound counterintuitive since you already are overachieving with two jobs, but you want to be average in your second job. Meaning, you do the work on time and perform well, yet you ensure to stay under the radar.
If you go above and beyond, you may end up with more work or promotions that take up your time. The less attention you get, the better. And if moving up the career ladder is your goal, then stick to one job where you can focus and grow.
6. Take care of yourself.
This might be one of the most important tips, but you need to take care of your mental and physical health. One job alone can be draining along with your personal commitments. And if you don’t make time for yourself and know when to stop working, you’ll crash quickly.
Ensure you have scheduled breaks, have social events on your calendar, get exercise, shut down your work at the same time each day, make sure you are eating well, and take some personal time off as needed.
7. Don’t talk about it to others.
You don’t want to talk about working two remote jobs to others. Certainly your significant other should know since it does impact their life and time with you.
But other than that, family and co-workers are off-limits. The last thing you want is the word to get out and potentially impact your career. While having two remote jobs is not illegal, an employer still could terminate you on the spot.
Is Working Two Remote Jobs at the Same Time Worth It?
Personally, I won’t tell you whether it’s right or wrong to work two remote jobs. If you get your work done, deliver projects on time, and have the skills – do what you got to do!
And because of the tough economic climate as well as employers having very little loyalty, it is no wonder people are doing this.
But as you read above, there are certainly some pros to having two full-time jobs at the same time. However, employers will take issue if you are only doing 20 hours a week for each, when you should be full-time for 40 hours for both.
Maybe you can get all the work done in less time, but you want to be careful your quality of work doesn’t slip, you don’t burn out, and you won’t hurt your professional reputation.
And if you are unsure still, consider freelancing work or having a side hustle that takes a few hours per week instead. That can be a good start and a stepping stone to having multiple remote jobs.