The terms remote work and home office can be heard and read more and more frequently. But what do they actually mean if we try to look under the surface and put aside our associations? What opportunities arise if we choose to work from home, and what situations can it solve?
In this article, we’ll look at remote job opportunities, and why many people choose this lifestyle. We will also talk about how we can find a new profession if we want to work from home.
You can also read my personal story about how I came to work at home and what experiences I have about working at a company where every coworker works remotely.
Remote work – what do we mean by that?
Before I tell you my story, let’s take a look at what remote work is. Let’s separate work you have to take home out of necessity or the work people must do at home, and just talk about people who can decide where they want to work under the right conditions and choose to work at home.
The spring of 2020, and the effect of the coronavirus pandemic on our working habits
Strict measures have been introduced in many parts of the world over the outbreak of the COVID epidemic, which has included restrictions on leaving home and a firm recommendation that whoever can do their job from home should do that.
A lot of people experienced the advantages and disadvantages of remote work this way—not under ideal conditions. This sudden change caused them anxiety, with their employers being unprepared, and kids learning from home. The change was felt in many ways; some experienced only the positive side of working from home, while others wanted nothing more than to be able to go to their workplaces again.
Temporary home office or long-term remote work?
It is good practice to separate temporary home offices from long-term, well-organized remote work, since ideally, this is not a form of work that most people want to escape from.
By home office, we mean when an employee stays a few days (or more, because of the coronavirus situation) at home, but can be reached during her working hours, uses company equipment, and does office work from home. We might think this is convenient, because we don’t have to go to work in the morning, and can complete our tasks from the comfort of our home, on our couch, maybe even in pyjamas. This may not be optimal for everyone, but this article is not about their work efficiency.
Others may think about remote work as work that they “bring home”, which invades their privacy, making it difficult for them to have a family meal, or free time on the weekend without worrying about their jobs.
To us, long-term remote work means much more. We create conditions that let us work efficiently and pleasantly from home. This can apply to many professions and jobs: you can be an entrepreneur, a freelancer or even an employee who chooses to make their home their workplace.
Who works remotely, and why?
Well-organized remote work can be an ideal choice in many situations. It can help those who don’t get any job offers near their home. Commuting daily can be exhausting, expensive, and time-consuming, so remote work seems ideal in these situations in many aspects.
People who can’t get to their workplaces easily
Some people choose remote work because of their disability or other health reasons. Some families work from home while bringing up children to be able to create a more stable financial situation and a balanced family life.
People who live far from cities
A lot of people leave their past in the city behind and start a new life in the countryside, far from all the noise and traffic. This doesn’t mean they have to give up their old jobs if they can be done remotely. Of course, for most people, moving to a new place means changing their lifestyle, starting a new profession, and leaving their old one. But if they want to make sure that they have income, remote work can be a great choice if they have a valuable, sought-after job.
Digital nomads—the “I-always-work-from-wherever” lifestyle
A new lifestyle started to take hold of people in the 21st century, called the “digital nomad” lifestyle. People who choose to live this way are always on the road exploring the world while working remotely. They only need a laptop and a reliable internet connection.
On the website of Adventurous Kate, you can follow her adventures around the world since 2010. Her business is built up around this idea as well—she teaches women (remotely, of course) about how they can travel safely. There is also a Hungarian digital nomad blog, if you are interested in the pros and cons of this travelling-while-working lifestyle of an English teacher.
And here are 31 exciting blogs if you want to learn even more about the digital nomad lifestyle.
What work can be done from home?
The spectrum is wider than we would think at first, and the list of opportunities always gets longer. Big, international companies started to offer partially or fully remote jobs. On job-seeking platforms (like LinkedIn), you can filter for remote work, and there are sites that specialize in remote work exclusively, for example, We work remotely.
A lot of creative work (graphic designer, photographer, video editor, copywriter, designer, etc.) can be done remotely. In a corporate environment, there are countless positions where keeping in contact is the only condition, meaning you don’t have to be present in person. These jobs can also be remote work if the operation of the company allows it e.g., in the HR area, in customer services, as consultants, in the marketing area, as contact people, or as a salesman, etc.
In the IT field, most tasks can be completed from home, in software and web development, UX design, data science or any other specialization if the structure of the company and the ways of communication allow it.
Occasional jobs can also be done remotely, like translation, data recording and opinion polling.
If you have a profession, skill or talent that you could use to start a business or work as a freelancer for other companies, you can also try creating the perfect work environment at your home.
The 15 most common jobs that can be done remotely according to the online remote work website, upwork.com
- Software development and testing
- IT networking (system administrator, database administrator, information security, data protection, etc.)
- Data science, data analysis
- Engineering jobs, design, 3D modelling, interior design
- Design, creative jobs (animation, graphic design, illustrations, audio and video jobs, brand design, photography)
- Writing (articles, marketing, blogs, editing, proofreading)
- Law (company law, contracts, consultation, etc)
- Data recording, transcription
- Assistant jobs
- Customer service
- Sales, marketing (social media, SEO, telemarketing, etc.)
- HR consultant, recruitment
The most well-known companies of the world are starting to prefer “working from everywhere,” e.g., Google, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, Amazon, Apple, etc.
My experience with remote work
From interpreter to copywriter
In the spring of 2020, I couldn’t continue working as I had been, as a freelancer, which had been my main source of income due to the coronavirus outbreak. I was working as an interpreter, and due to the mandatory shutdown, the number of my orders decreased.
I had to find a new job, so I applied for many positions where I could work remotely.
It was important for me that the job I apply to gives me a bit of flexibility since I wanted to do my own work schedule so that I could continue my occasional interpreting jobs as well.
At CodeBerry Programming School, I found the opportunity to have a constant, reliable source of income while working on exciting and creative processes and still having time for other important things in my life. At this company, a hundred percent of the work is done remotely. Every coworker works from home, joining this dynamically and smoothly operating team from all over the world.
How do people communicate with each other at a company that works completely remotely?
Communication and project management within the company happens with the help of a few pieces of software that had been developed to handle exactly these tasks. We use the chat application Slack to keep in touch instead of emails, and we create channels for each work team, for reporting bugs and other technical problems, for program organization, etc.
We use Basecamp to follow up on project planning and scheduling, and we get to look at the work of other teams there as well. We also see the events of the week and our tasks for the next week on Basecamp, and we plan things in 6 + 2-week-long project cycles. We follow the completion of each subtask on Trello.
Meetings are held on Zoom, and we handle documents on Google interfaces that can be edited together (like Docs and Sheets). Every file (e.g., meeting notes, articles, spreadsheets, notes) can be accessed by all coworkers.
The pros and cons of working from home – a subjective viewpoint
The most positive thing about remote work for me is that I can choose the time when I want to work, and can adjust it week-by-week if necessary.
To be efficient, I always plan ahead and mark exactly when I will do my tasks—in the morning, the whole day, at night, or maybe on the weekend, and I mark when I have other activities. If the next season or situation requires some other schedule, I can adjust it as much as I like.
It is a great advantage for me that I am not tied down to a place, so I can work from abroad, from the countryside, from the capital, from a library, a café or an office, or from home. This gives me great security, so I don’t have to worry about how I can get to work if something changes (if I move, for example).
By choosing remote work, a few things fundamentally changed in my everyday life. I spend less time traveling, so I can spend that valuable time on something else, and I don’t even have to stress about being late and being in crowds.
However, we have to struggle with the decrease in human relationships, and we have to find other ways of connection since we don’t see our colleagues much, even through a screen, when we work from home. To have a good workplace environment, we need to talk, laugh and eat together. We need to find these impulses elsewhere when we work remotely. This might help you focus on your work, but can cause problems for people who need the company.
Learning remotely is also worth it
If you want to improve yourself or want to change your profession, you have many opportunities to train yourself further. Learn, practice new skills or make your hobby your profession. Find what you are talented in, and what you would like to do as a job. If you want to work remotely in the long-term, acquire skills that can make it possible for you.
Learning from home can be efficient, and our students at CodeBerry prove it. They learned the basics of programming online and successfully changed professions. Read our student’s stories if you are interested in why they decided to learn programming and how they found jobs as developers.
The remote programming course has all the advantages that remote work has—you can schedule it according to your life and needs.
If you need more tricks or advice, check out the following articles too – in these, we are writing about our own experiences and ideas that might help you to get really good chances at a job interview or earn some more additional skills to improve your programming knowledge!
- Interview tips that will give you confidence and help you land a dev job
- Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me When I Was Learning How to Code – And what I’ve learned from teaching others
- Basics of programming
- SEO Basics – The structure of a healthy website
- Is there a difference between programmer and developer?
- The 15 most common jobs that can be done remotely – remote work in 2020