Over the last few years, there has been an increasing trend for people to start working remotely – either in their existing jobs or starting up alone (most commonly as freelancers).
Today’s vastly improved mobile technology (combined with much faster mobile connection speeds) have made it possible for people to work perfectly well on the move. Moreover, with free Wi-Fi now offered in pretty much every coffee shop and bar, workers can jump onto fixed-line networks and enjoy blisteringly fast fibre speeds for just the price of a coffee or a beer.
The COVID effect and the rise of remote working
The recent COVID pandemic has given rise to an entirely new culture of remote working. Through distancing and isolation, staff were forced to work from home, usually connecting to existing office networks to perform their normal work role. As more businesses have adapted to this new trend of the virtual office, many workers have started to question if they even need to be located in the same country (never mind city) as their employer.
Perhaps more importantly, however, Coronavirus has also caused massive job losses. With unemployment levels nearing record levels around the world, workers are being forced to adapt to new roles, take new jobs or – as is becoming increasingly common – start up on their own.
Starting up during a pandemic? Are you crazy?
Here is a simple truth – the world post-COVID is going to be a very different place and there is little doubt we have merely seen the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the economic impact of the virus. Over the last year, businesses have adapted and streamlined their operations and many jobs that were previously safe are now anything but.
With so much turmoil in the markets and so little job confidence, many argue there is considerably more security to be had by starting up alone. Ideally, you will have skills from your previous employment that can be ported over to a new career working as a long-term contractor (for example, IT skills which you can do anywhere) or perhaps you will have a talent that lends itself to freelancing (for example, producing one-off graphic design, video or writing jobs). Whatever it is, today’s technology makes it perfectly feasible to work on the move, anywhere in the world where you have a mobile connection. The age of the remote worker is most definitely upon us and with so many companies now looking to hire freelancers rather than employing full-time, there isreally no reason why you cannot work while travelling.
The equipment you will need
As a starting point, you will need to invest in a fast, reliable laptop with impressive storage and RAM– something like the range of laptops offered by Lenovo. You will also need a mobile phone (ideally dual SIM) to allow you to work when you cannot jump on free Wi-Fi. Also, when travelling, it is a good idea to invest in a local SIM card from that country for significantly cheaper rates and, normally, far higher data allowances.
The age of the Digital Nomad
This new culture of remote working has even given rise to an entirely new subculture – that of the so-called Digital Nomad. These plucky entrepreneurs can be found working all around the world, often forming communities and living in shared, built-for-purpose accommodation complete with meeting rooms, communal office space and fast fixed-line connections.
The concept of these nomadic communities is very simple, built around the idea of forging a network of like-minded individuals with a view to helping each other out. For example, a web designer might meet a programmer and then collaborate together on shared projects. Search Facebook for Digital Nomad communities in your country or city to find out more.