The competition for work-from-home jobs has become intense in certain cities across the United States. According to LinkedIn’s Workforce Insights Report, Bend, Oregon, is one of the top cities where remote job applications have significantly increased. Nearly 75% of job applications in Bend are for remote roles, compared to just 42% two years ago. This trend is mirrored in other regions as well.
Nationally, only 11% of open positions on LinkedIn offer remote work, but they attract almost half of the total job applications as of May. The top ten cities with the highest interest in work-from-home jobs, based on the share of applications for remote-specific openings, are Bend, Oregon; Asheville, North Carolina; Wilmington, North Carolina; Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; Spokane-Coeur d’Alene, Washington; Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Medford-Grants Pass, Oregon; North Port-Sarasota, Florida; Wausau-Stevens Point, Wisconsin; and Crestview-Fort Walton Beach-Destin, Florida.
These cities, often referred to as “Zoom towns,” experienced an influx of residents during the COVID-19 pandemic when remote work became widespread. Bend, in particular, attracted tech workers from Silicon Valley and Seattle. However, as several big tech companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple increase their return-to-office requirements, remote work opportunities may become scarcer. Individuals who relocated during the pandemic might have to let go of their newfound flexibility or explore alternative options.
The report suggests that if workers in these cities are unable to secure remote jobs, there may be an increase in entrepreneurship, a return to larger metropolitan areas, or a shift towards hybrid or in-office work. The competitive job market is likely to reshape the dynamics of remote work in these regions.