What It's like to Be a Remote Worker in 2018

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Remote work wasn’t always as it is now.

When I first started working remotely back in 2013 things definitely weren’t the same. For a start there were some very common stereotypes attached to being a remote worker. You were seen as someone who simply didn’t go to an office and spent most of their day watching TV with your feet up whilst pretending to work. Perhaps this stemmed from the fact that at the time there really wasn’t anywhere to work. Your options were work from home in isolation or try to find a cafe where they wouldn’t mind you sitting there for 3 hours whilst you nurse a single drink.

Fast forward to 2018 and things are definitely looking up for remote workers, and there’s never been a better time to get involved. So here’s what it’s really like to be a remote worker in 2018.

Finding remote work?

As the founder of JustRemote, a company dedicated to building a better platform for remote workers, I can wholeheartedly say that there have never been as many opportunities to find remote work as there are now.

We now live in a world where there simply aren’t enough skilled people to fill available roles and so companies are racing to embrace flexible and remote work in a bid to attract the best talent.

More and more companies are also discovering that there are a huge number of productivity benefits that come from allowing people to work where they're most comfortable. This, combined with a real desire from workers for a better life-work balance, means that it’s easier than ever to find remote work.

Back in 2013 you had to spend hours searching through job boards to try and find roles that are appropriate for you, but now on sites like JustRemote you can easily filter down to find roles that fit your life in seconds.

Companies offering remote work?

As I mentioned above there are now thousands of companies globally that are looking for remote workers. This ranges from completely distributed teams at the likes of Buffer and Toggl, through to Airbnb taking on a few remote staff. Whilst it may still seem that the majority of remote positions are for developers and designers, there is definitely a shift happening in this space. Increasingly, I am hearing and discovering roles for people who work in areas including sales, marketing, recruitment and even more traditional professions like lawyers and accountants. As the year closes out and we move into 2019, we expect this trend to continue and hopefully, before you know it, all roles will be offered with flexible or remote working conditions.

Where to work from?

In 2013 working remotely involved a lot of sitting at home, often in isolation for weeks or even months at a time. Five years later and wow things have changed a lot.

Remote workers really are spoilt with options of where to work, and this has been led by the trend towards coworking spaces. Rather than being stuck at home, you can now visit a site like Croissant, and within a few minutes sign up to access any number of coworking spaces around the world. Not only does it mean you leave your house, but it helps you explore where you live and interact with people. It gives you somewhere comfortable and secure that means you aren’t worried every time you leave your laptop. Many coworking spaces offer amazing benefits like free coffee, meet-ups, and even access to convenient things like a printer (a massive bonus for me as I never had a printer when I needed one!).

Companies like Croissant are also making the dream of travelling and working possible. By signing up to their network, you can go see the world and still have somewhere to work and meet people. This is a massive benefit as it often allows you to meet locals who can give you amazing tips on where to go while you’re in their city.

The future of work

So what is the future of work looking like? We think very positive!

Millennials and Generation Z are not only requesting greater flexibility: they are actively leaving positions that don’t offer it. This encourages companies to adopt new working practices. In a recent survey, 81% of millennials interviewed said that they would like to telecommute (A.K.A. remote work) 100% of the time, which suggests that the future is looking more flexible than ever.

I’m personally very excited for a more flexible future that gives more time back to employees and enables them to live the life they want to lead. Here’s to coworking spaces, remote working, and giving greater flexibility to working people. Bring on 2019!

Guest post brought to you by Tom Pinchen. Tom is the founder of JustRemote, a company based in London whose mission is to create a significantly better platform for people seeking remote work.