Overemployed remote jobs gives one worker job security – Business Insider

A 48-year-old said secretly working three remote jobs provided him valuable job security (Worker in story not pictured).
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  • A 48-year-old began secretly working three full-time remote jobs last year, earning a combined $344,000.
  • He was laid off from two of his jobs in October — and said this is why he sought out extra job security. 
  • Balancing three jobs was transformational for his finances but was led to burnout.

Joseph, a 48-year-old network engineer in Texas, learned in October that he was being laid off.

He called it a “huge relief.”

Last year, Joseph earned a combined $344,000 working three full-time remote jobs at the same time, according to documents viewed by Business Insider. He kept his “overemployment” — which he began in 2020 — a secret from everyone at work except a few trusted colleagues. Joseph, whose identity is known to Business Insider but has been withheld for his fear of professional repercussions, is among a niche group of white-collar workers who have secretly worked multiple jobs — and gotten away with it.

One week after Joseph was laid off from one of his three jobs, he received more news: his employment with a second job would be terminated in January. There were widespread layoffs at both companies, driven by a combination of cost-cutting efforts and operational changes, he said.

While this was a bit unsettling, Joseph was in a better position than most of his co-workers. In addition to the $50,000 in combined severance pay he was entitled to, the layoffs didn’t leave him unemployed.

“It’s huge that I still have this third job,” he said. “All of my coworkers and friends are asking, ‘Let me know if you need anything,’ and I am appreciative. But it’s also nice to say, ‘You know what — I am better than good.'”

In May, he told Business Insider the extra income had helped him pay off the remaining $129,000 on his mortgage, save for his children’s college education, and grow a retirement nest egg. But arguably, the biggest benefit of having multiple jobs was that it provided him with an unusual level of job security, he said. Now, even though he’s endured two layoffs, he still has a full-time job.

Holding two jobs at once doesn’t violate federal or state laws, but it could breach some employment contracts and be a fireable offense if a worker is ever found out. Helping workers like Joseph avoid detection are some 300,000 members of the “overemployed” community on Discord and Reddit, BI’s Aki Ito reported.

Overemployment can double your salary and boost your job security — but it could also lead to burnout

Following the layoffs, Joseph was relieved not only because he still had a job, but because he needed a break. While working three jobs has been life-changing for him and his family financially, he said balancing emails and meetings — and keeping his other jobs a secret — was becoming unsustainable.

“Now I don’t have to worry about answering multiple emails, phone calls, across three different jobs,” he said. “I definitely was getting burned out, and it’s nice to have less pressure on me throughout the day.”

Joseph said he typically worked 40 hours a week across his three jobs, in addition to a few hours two to three evenings a week. But he said his remaining job — his “real passion” — had gotten busier in recent months and that he’s looking forward to focusing on that role.

“Getting let go from those two jobs happened just at the right time,” he said. “It’s really nice to focus on one job that is right up my alley.”

In early 2020, when Joseph had one job that paid $117,500 a year, he accepted a new remote role in the IT field with a $120,000 salary. But before he quit his first job for the new position, he said a colleague convinced him to stay and try to work both jobs simultaneously. Last year, he accepted a third role because he anticipated the downsizing that ultimately impacted his second job.

Joseph said he managed to juggle three jobs for over a year by blocking off his work calendars to prevent meeting overlaps. He also said he was lucky to be in the IT field: “We never really work a full 40 hours a week.”

While he’ll have less income coming in, Joseph’s remaining job pays over six figures annually. Additionally, he said all the money he’s earned over the past few years has provided him with a financial cushion.

“I don’t stress over it since I know financially we are good,” he said.

Going forward, Joseph said he’s focused on living debt-free and saving for retirement. While he has no plans to take on a second or third job in the near term, he won’t rule it out — in part because, as he well knows, his employment at his current job might not last forever.

“The extra income is nice,” he said. “But it’s also really nice to focus on one job.”

Are you working multiple remote jobs at the same time and willing to discuss details about your pay and schedule? If so, reach out to this reporter at


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