Photograph by Oli Kellett—Getty Images
By Anne Fisher
January 20, 2015

Most people think of telecommuting as something that cubicle dwellers request, but more and more employers are looking for new hires who seldom, if ever, come in to the office in the first place.

One reason is that having employees set up their own home offices can save companies a bundle in real estate, utilities, and other overhead costs. If everyone with a portable job and a desire to work from home (or from the road) did so just half the time, U.S. employers could save more than $700 billion a year, according to a study from research firm Global Workplace Analytics.

Even so, some of the job openings listed on FlexJobs.com in 2014 are surprising, especially since more of them than in 2013 were for senior roles that usually require showing up in person. A sampling of 10 telecommuting positions, from employers all over the U.S. and in the U.K., filled through the site last year:

  • Senior pharmaceutical scientist — Oversee development and results of clinical drug trials.
  • Fish biologist — Monitor tagged salmon and maintain database of statistics. Some travel required. (Upstream, maybe?)
  • Environmental engineer — Design equipment and processes to prevent or reduce air pollution.
  • Director of international sales — Develop sales strategies and manage customer records. U.S.-based, travel required.
  • Senior branding/naming expert — Evaluate market research and name new products. Seven years’ branding experience required, MBA preferred.
  • Chief public affairs officer — Manage national public relations and internal communications. Oversee staff of 125.
  • Chief operating officer — C-level department head to do strategic planning, business development. Some startup experience required.
  • Chief executive officer — Oversee daily operations and long-term strategy for statewide chain of assisted-living senior homes. Regulatory experience preferred. Travel required.
  • Vice president of sales — Based in the U.K. Seven to 15 years’ experience in financial services account management required.

Considering a career change? How about something like this?

  • Ohio Valley Beer Ambassador — Coordinate and attend events in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky to promote beer and spirits. Candidate must be “very outgoing.” Translation: Party animal preferred.

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