How to Become a Remote Developer

2016-12-06 | Remote Work

For many, working remotely is the ultimate goal: saving the money (and hassle) from that dreaded daily commute, making your own hours, working from bed on cold winter days … it all sounds great, but how do you actually get a job as a remote developer?

Convince your company to go remote

Well, if you’re already employed and want to continue in your current job … just working somewhere other than your office, the best solution is to talk to your company about going remote.

First, build rapport

If you’ve just started a new job, it’s probably best to make sure you establish yourself as someone who is trustworthy and dependable — someone who can deliver quality work on schedule — before you suggest any changes to your work post.

Mention the advantages for the company

Make sure your company understands the advantages this will have for them.

Multiple studies suggest that remote workers are more productive, clock in more hours, take less sick days, are less likely to quit and ultimately save money for their companies.

Tiny Pulse’s survey, for example, shows that remote employees are not only happier at work, but 91% of the respondents report being more productive at home that in a traditional office.

So, base your argument not only on the advantages this will bring to you but also on the value this will create for your employer.

Make sure the rules are clear

If your company doesn’t have a clear policy for remote workers, make sure you can, at least, answer the following questions:

  • what tool(s) should you use to communicate with your team members?
  • during what times should you be available?
  • should you register your work hours? how?
  • how should you track your work?
  • who should you contact with questions regarding your work?
  • and anything else you feel might be important …

Find a remote job

If you’re looking for a new job, there are tons of sites with job postings for remote positions only:

Check out these resources —
We Work Remotely —
Working nomads —
Skip the Drive —

Alternatively, most job search engines, like Indeed or Monster, now include remote jobs, you just need to include the term “remote” in your search.

Make yourself more “hireable”

One of the most common reasons why companies hire remote developers is to find someone who is really good at one particular technology or skill, which might be hard to find in local candidates.

If you have a field of expertise, check out some of the sites listed above and see what’s the demand for that particular skill. If you don’t have it, see if anything stands out as something you could learn or work on, in order to improve your changes of getting hired.

Nail the job interview

When interviewing for remote positions, employers are looking for someone that shows extra trustworthiness, dependability, autonomy, ability to self-motivate, manage time, work and stress.

As you can imagine, it’s pretty hard to know how trustworthy someone is with a simple interview, but a good indicator is the candidate’s previous work experience.

If you don’t have any experience in a remote position, try to highlight projects or moments where you had to display those traits.

Employers will also try to understand how you’d handle this new work arrangement. Make sure to focus on the way you would organise, divide and manage your work and time — including tools and methodologies — and how would you communicate with team members and managers.