The “best careers” for remote work are obviously careers that don’t require your physical presence. That could be anything, though: from data entry to customer service. When it comes to a job, we also want to see the money. There are plenty of low-paid remote and telecommute jobs around. Some of them really don’t pay well – unless you’re a digital nomad living in a dirt-cheap country. So when looking for the “best” remote jobs, there are a few other factors to consider.
Beyond allowing for a remote work environment, the best telecommute positions also have the following points in common:
- The job is interesting, stimulating and challenging. Which is important for many people, especially those who want to learn new skills and advance in their careers.
- The job offers a fair wage. Just like any other job. In fact, remote employees actually cost their employers less money. There is NO excuse why a telecommuter should be paid less than someone who suits in the office.
- Career advancement is still very important.
- A healthy work/life balance, like having flexible hours. It may surprise you, but not all remote jobs are flexible. Many are flexible by nature, but there are definitions positions that require employees to work in shifts.
So, what do these jobs actually look like, then? Well, I’ve created a list of the “best” careers for working remotely.
Best Careers for Remote Work – Anything digital or tech-related
1. Programming and tech of all kinds
More specifically, web and software developers are one of the best careers for remote work. Why? Because a lot of the job involve working on an actual computer – much of the communication can be done over Skype, Slack, IRC… A whole range of tools. In addition, programming and tech jobs often require a lot of concentration and therefore it’s usually necessary to be separate from other people.
Of course, “programming” and “tech” are incredibly broad fields. They’re also pretty in-demand. That’s why companies are often willing to hire people in far-flung places to due the specialist skills they offer.
And programmers, generally speaking, need a lot of time to concentrate. Some companies do prefer to lock their employers in a dark room and leave them alone. Others though don’t really care where they are.
2. Digital marketing and most things “online media”
Again, two very broad fields. However just like tech, IT or anything related to development, digital marketing skills are in high demand. They also don’t necessarily require you to have such a high level of technical skills (though a certain amount of technical literacy is highly recommended).
So, let’s get more specific. Just what’s included in “digital marketing/online media”? well…
- Any job related to digital media buying, SEO (search engine optimization), SEA/SEM, digital PR, content marketing or social media.
- The masterminds behind the scenes: the copywriters, graphic designers, translators, project managers, account managers, strategists.
Other careers suited to remote work
Yet again another broad field – but thanks to telecommunications, plenty of admin jobs have joined the list. Technically, many of these positions have little to do with any “online” industry. But these days, countless administrative tasks are performed on a computer. Fewer and fewer companies are using filing cabinets as their main form of information storage.
So often, this means that those in administrative positions don’t always have to be present. Of course, the older or more “traditional” an organization is, the more rigid they’ll be about allowing you to work from home. Or from another country.
2. Human Resources
A surprising number of people in HR have a huge amount of flexibility in their jobs. Organizing holidays, calendars, taking care of internal company matters… They don’t always require a HR person to be sitting in the same building all the time. Admittedly though, you may be required to go to meetings with various departments and be physically present. However, this field does offer a comfortable degree of flexibility for many people.
3. A whole bunch of creative jobs
Traditional agencies often have their creatives locked up in a specific department. With advanced technology nowadays, meetings and brainstorming can be done flexibility and remotely. In terms of gaining inspiration and new perspectives (which is the challenge of creative work), these jobs may be among some of the best careers for remote work.
Why? Because artists, writers and other creatives often have their own “process”. Some prefer to work alone in their studios, or wherever they get the most inspiration. Careers like…
- …art directors
- Video editors
- Design professionals…
…and many more often thrive by being able to choose their own specific work environment.
When considering the best careers for remote work and telecommuting, it’s important to consider what’s actually done in the job. As a prospective digital nomad or avid remote worker, you should still consider the company you’re working for. Many organizations are still uncertain about remote teams and simply don’t trust the setup.
The challenge here is then not only carving a career where most of your work can be done from anywhere. You’ve also got to sharpen your negotiation skills for when you land that perfect job. You need to know where you can realistically convince your employer to give you the freedom you need.