With the gig economy now in full swing in 2019, landing a remote job that allows you to work from anywhere is more conceivable than ever. Talent precedes borders, and companies are now fully aware of that. All you need to do is develop a set of skills that make you a desirable candidate. But which skills exactly? If you’re considering making the leap in 2019, start brainstorming with our list of this year’s 10 most in-demand skills for remote work.
UX design, or User Experience Design, is far and away one of the most desirable skills to have as a remote worker. UX designers, broadly speaking, work to improve the usefulness and interactivity of everything from smartphone applications to restaurant menus and buildings. While there are tons of hard skills needed to become a designer, it also encompasses an eye for aesthetics, visual design, psychology, and sociology. If you’re interested in jumping into UX design, you’re in luck, as the barriers of entry into the field are relatively low. No matter what you’re passionate about or what you majored in, you’ll be able to bring something unique to the table.
Software developers are the creative geniuses behind computer programs. Depending on their specific role, developers will analyze a particular need or problem, map out the potential design, create flowcharts, diagrams, and models, and eventually pass that information along to the computer programmers who actually write the code. What kinds of skills are required in software development? Motivation is probably the main skill, as many of these projects can get bogged down and last for weeks on end, but a developer has to also be a great problem solver, a team player, and have a unique analytical eye. Side note: remote developers can easily make around six figures.
Everyone knows someone that has moved abroad to teach English, but what they don’t tell you is that moving abroad isn’t necessary. In fact, many people who move abroad to teach a language end up landing an online job instead. Sites like VIP Kids and DaDa ABC are platforms where you can teach English online to students in Asia for a very reasonable salary. Teaching a language is relatively the easiest skill to acquire -- you already know the language, TEFL certifications are readily available, and most platforms don’t require any curriculum planning or grading.
With a low barrier to entry and extremely high demand, online marketing roles are great for anyone eager to jump into the digital nomad lifestyle. In 2019, every company needs to have some kind of digital marketing strategy, and they’re usually willing to pay significant money to outsource the job to an expert. Managing branding strategies, developing content strategies, curating a relevant blog, acquiring backlinks and maintaining a solid SEO plan are all within your duties.
Social Media Management
While social media usually falls within the greater umbrella of digital marketing, companies that are serious about expanding their digital footprint will designate an entire role just to social. And if you think this role just consists of posting Instagrams every now and then, think again. Most social media managers take the reigns on anywhere between 5 and 10 different platforms and are in charge of coordinating campaigns, following up on engagement, and creating partnerships with other relevant businesses.
Writing and Editing
Even in spite of the statistics on video content, writing has been and will always be one of the most quintessential remote jobs. Think beyond blog posts and click-bait listicles, because writing jobs include everything from email copywriting to resume writing, academic writing, technical writing, product reviews, and travel writing. Most companies that rely on disseminating written information are happy to outsource that work to a savvy wordsmith. Once you compile a decent portfolio, you should have no problem landing a remote writing job.
Being an accountant may sound like a boring gig, but what about being an accountant on the beach in Thailand? Accounting is one of the more traditional jobs that can be done from just about anywhere. As businesses open up to new technologies, more and more opportunities for accountants are likely to appear in 2019. One particular niche worth exploring is the finances of digital nomads. Helping your fellow wanderlusters open businesses and get their finances in order is a great way to make a remote living.
Video Content and Graphic Design
According to a recent study, by 2021, 80% of the world’s internet traffic will be video. Consumer tastes are changing, video content is becoming exponentially more engaging, and attention levels are plummeting. If you possess the skills to summarize a chunk of information in a concise and engaging video, your work will be highly in demand, remote or otherwise. In that same vein, all companies need a smart and sleek graphic design surrounding their brand, which is where graphic designers come into play. With the right equipment, both of these jobs can be completed from the most far-flung destinations on Earth.
It’s no secret that big data is going to be (and has already been) one of the most important themes of the 21st century. Businesses are now compiling oceans of data, and they need data scientists to organize it, analyze it, and report it. If you’re fond of numbers and excel spreadsheets and pulling themes from chunks of numbers, data science could be your ticket to working remotely.
Think personal assistant, without the delivering coffee part. Virtual assistants are people who take care of all the little tasks that make a business run fluidly. Small businesses, in particular, are keen to hire virtual assistants who manage everything from secretarial duties to scheduling appointments, updating websites, and handling more technical work. If you’d call yourself even remotely OCD, you may already have the skills required to be an invaluable virtual assistant.
Written by: Dillon DuBois