This story originally appeared on Business Insider.
Less than a year after starting his first full-time job outside of school, Jason, a 22-year-old software engineer on the West Coast, decided to make some extra money to supplement his $75,000 Salary.
Jason’s position was completely remote, and he told Insider he could get all of his work done in just 10 to 15 hours a week — so he figured he had the time to do something else.
He thought about trying it sideline He may have grown microgreens, accepted odd jobs posted on Craigslist, or worked as a freelance programmer, but said he ultimately decided to look for a second full-time or part-time job.
In November 2021 he started a second full-time position as a remote software developer. Today, he said he typically works the two jobs a combined 20 to 30 hours a week and made a combined profit of $144,000 last year, according to documents seen by Insider.
And he hasn’t told either employer that he’s making a mistake. Jason’s real name is known to insiders, but was not given to avoid professional repercussions.
“I wanted to increase my income,” he said. “I felt like my workload was light enough at my first job, and I knew if I couldn’t handle it, I could just quit one of the jobs.”
While Juggling two roles Sometimes it can be stressful — like when meetings overlap or unexpected work comes along — Jason said his work arrangement reduces his stress in some ways.
“I’m more willing to say ‘no’ to assignments at one of my jobs because I know I have a backup job,” he said.
Jason is one of many Americans who have done so additional work done Partly due to high inflation, but he’s one of a smaller group of employees who keep secret multiple full-time remote jobs in many cases double their salary.
But the window of opportunity for doing so may be closing, as is the case for many companies Call employees back to the office and Listing less completely removed positions. In March it was about 13% Job postings were done remotelyaccording to data from staffing firm Manpower Group, a decrease from 17% in March 2022, but a 4% increase from pre-pandemic levels.
And as knowledge of this phenomenon increases, some members of the community of overemployment are worried they will to be found out at some point. While holding two jobs at the same time isn’t against federal or state law, it might be breaking employment contracts and getting people fired, labor lawyers told the Wall Street Journal. It is has happened to some workers.
The desk in his apartment where Jason usually works. Jason about BI
5 strategies to do two remote jobs and get away with it
Jason said he uses five different strategies to juggle both jobs and avoid getting caught.
First, he said he was trying to overestimate how long his tasks would take in order to have more time to handle the workloads of both jobs.
“When I complete a task, I keep it for a while before submitting it for review,” he said.
Second, he said he makes sure he doesn’t excel at his job and thereby attract extra attention and orders.
“Whenever possible, I try to appear a little incompetent so that when it takes me a while to complete a task, my colleagues are more understanding and they don’t give me a lot of difficult tasks,” he said.
Third, Jason said he dedicates less time to a job if he can get away with it.
“There are certain assignments where I enjoy reviewing other people’s work. So sometimes I don’t check her work properly so I can have more time to work on my other job,” he said.
Fourth, he said he’s learned to turn down projects.
“Whenever I’m asked to do more work, sometimes I say ‘no’ because I already have work on my plate,” he said.
Fifth, he said he makes sure his colleagues know when others are delaying the completion of his duties.
“If something like this happens, I make sure to tell my colleagues and supervisors so they can expect the work to be delayed,” he said.
Why he’s not worried about a crackdown on overemployment
Since taking on two full-time remote jobs, Jason says he’s immersed himself in the internet’s “over-busy community” — the r/Overbusy Subreddit has 176,000 members.
He said many members of the community are concerned that overemployment is too widespread or receives too much publicity, because employers may then work to identify and crack down on these workers.
But Jason said he never worried about it much.
“I didn’t think enough people would be able to handle overemployment because of their career, specific job, stress tolerance, desire to work more, etc., and I still think that’s true,” he said he said, adding that he doesn’t believe it would matter enough to most employers to take action – especially if their employees are doing their jobs.
Going forward, Jason said he’s hoping to devote more time to a new company he launched last December, although it’s still in its early stages.
Meanwhile, he said he intends to continue working at both jobs and that the extra income has helped him have the financial security and life he desires. He said he’s quite frugal — he doesn’t own a car, seldom dines out, and lives in a one-bedroom apartment that costs $1,200 a month.
“For me, it feels like I’ve nailed my current lifestyle because I pretty much have everything I want,” he said.