Some people just weren’t built to work in a conventional office environment. While some people enjoy spending their days surrounded by colleagues in a work setting, other people would much rather spend their time alone and isolated, in a familiar and comfortable environment that allows them to be productive and happy.
It wasn’t that long ago that people who would rather work alone found it nearly impossible to arrange a working situation to accommodate their preference. Over the last decade, however, phenomenal advances in communications technology and the advent of several new types of work have opened up many opportunities for people to work remotely if they desire. In this article we’re going to review some of the jobs that are most suited to working remotely.
By far, the profession that is most suited to remote work is that of programmer or developer (As an added bonus, these positions also tend to come with very competitive salaries). The field of programming and development covers a range of specialized activities, including web development, software development, video game programming, mobile app development and more. There are also as many programming and development languages one can choose to learn, each of which is suited to a particular activity.
Several companies in Quebec allow programmers and developers they hire to work from home, but the real explosion in remote work is happening in the United States. In recent years, there has been a remarkable surge in demand for professional coders who can work remotely, from established Silicon Valley tech firms and small well-funded start-ups alike, all of whom can afford to hire programmers and developers at a premium.
Annual salaries in the field are usually in the $70,000 to $80,000 range, but it’s not uncommon to see offers in the $125,000 range for skilled developers.
In Quebec, several schools offer training programs in programming and development. Of course, a great thing about coding is that you can also learn on your own, using sites such as Codeacademy.
This is one of the most popular jobs in the Digital Nomad community, and is also a common side job for people who work full-time but want to earn a bit of extra money each month. Being a language teacher isn’t the easiest or best-paying job, but it allows workers to maintain a semblance of human contact while working remotely, something that’s important to many people.
The principle is straightforward: A language teacher is responsible for several students, and each week spends several hours teaching them remotely using videoconferencing technology such as Skype or Google Hangouts. These teachers normally make between $12 and $30 per hour depending on their experience and level of education (certified teachers can charge a premium).
Language teachers often have their own network through which they can drum up new business via word-of-mouth. Other teachers will work for companies that specialize in remote teaching or use online learning platforms like Italki.
Writer / Editor / Translator
Like language teachers, writers, editors and translators can also work remotely, full- or part-time. Some work full-time for companies, but many are freelancers or contract hires. In this sense, it’s the ideal profession for lovers of the written word who also enjoy change, since this work allows them to work on a variety of projects for companies in different sectors.
The salaries in this field vary greatly depending on the skills and experience a person brings to the table. For example, a translator who speaks five languages perfectly could land a lucrative contract with a multinational corporation. In Quebec, writing, editing and translation services are in high demand both in the public and private sector.
Graphic or Web Designer
This is a good example of a job that can be done by either a full-time employee or a freelancer. A large number of web designers work from home or from shared workspaces.
One of the advantages of being a designer is that you get to work on a variety of different projects. The most prominent employers in this field include web agencies and advertising or marketing agencies.
The field of web marketing includes several areas of work that can be done remotely, either by employees or freelancers. SEO and SEM specialists, web traffic analysts, “growth hackers” and content managers can all do their jobs effectively from home.
In Quebec, an incredible number of companies and agencies are looking for web marketing specialists, since qualified and competent people are very hard to find. Recruiters are tearing their hair out!
Because web marketing is a fairly new field, it tends to be younger people who occupy these positions. For some of the specializations in web marketing, such as SEO and SEM, there exist very few formal education resources to learn the technical aspects of the work: the majority of people who do this work learned on their own by reading about the subject and conducting their own tests.
While still relatively rare in Quebec, companies in the United States are increasingly hiring digital marketing directors who do the entirety of their jobs remotely. The people occupying these positions must manage a team at a distance, sometimes without ever meeting the people they’re managing. This indicates just how far remote work has come, in that today directors can manage whole teams from the comfort of home.
Technical Support / Customer Service
To cut down on overhead costs, companies are increasingly giving up expensive office space in favor of having tech support and customer service employees work from home. This practice is common in Quebec and growing companies like Shopify engage a significant number of employees to work remotely.
Contrary to the other jobs detailed above, people working in tech support or customer service often don’t have the luxury of working wherever they want in the world. Usually, they have to work from home, on the same schedule as the company they’re working for, and the salary offered is usually minimum wage.
Of course, this isn’t an exhaustive list – there are many other jobs that can be done remotely! Make sure to check out Jobboom.com regularly to find the ideal remote job for you.
By: Francis Roussin