For years, a growing number of people have been craving adventure and a more flexible approach to work. The appeal of being able to work from any place with a strong internet connection—whether that’s a coworking space, a stunning tropical beach, a coffee shop, or even the airport—has captivated people’s attention for a while.
Then the pandemic hit, and interest in this digital nomad lifestyle increased tremendously. In 2020 alone, the number of digital nomads in the U.S. increased by about 50% to 11 million. Today, there are over 35 million digital nomads worldwide, and interest in this lifestyle has never been higher.
With remote work on the rise, more people are looking to become digital nomads, i.e., they want to lead a technology-enabled lifestyle that allows them to live and work from anywhere.
However, not all jobs support this kind of flexibility. If you’re an aspiring digital nomad, you have to search for specific jobs that allow you to work without being tied to a single location.
This process can be a bit tedious, but you’re in luck. In this article, we’ll go over some of the top roles available to digital nomads around the world, and where to start your search.
Top digital nomad jobs
In the digital nomad space, you have two options; you can either become an online entrepreneur or get a job at a company that accommodates remote work while travelling.
Digital nomad jobs typically fall under two categories: 1) full-time remote employee, or 2) freelancer. The following jobs fit into both categories.
Copywriting involves writing text that is used in marketing and advertising.
Thanks to the low barrier to entry, it’s one of the most popular jobs that digital nomads can take up. In addition, copywriting only requires a good laptop and an active internet connection so it’s a great job for digital nomads.
As a copywriter, you’ll have the option to work as a freelancer, within the marketing/advertising department of a company, or for an agency. Typical day-to-day activities include researching, writing, reviewing, and editing different types of copy such as slogans, taglines, and even jingles.
To succeed in the copywriting field, you’ll need to possess several important skills including:
- Creative thinking
- Strong writing
- Attention to detail
Back in 2011, 13% of the jobs posted on the “Who is hiring” thread of Hacker News, a popular news-aggregation website among programmers, mentioned remote work. Now, over 75% of the jobs posted on the thread are remote.
As one of the naturally laptop-based and flexible jobs, programming was among the first professions to take advantage of the digital nomad and remote lifestyle revolution. Unsurprisingly, it’s still one of the top digital nomad jobs to this day.
Remote programmers, just like their office counterparts, need some basic equipment to get work done. Besides the essentials like an ergonomic workstation, a comfortable keyboard, a quality screen, and a quiet workspace, a programmer’s equipment will also need to meet some basic technical parameters:
- At least 8GB of RAM is ideal
- 500GB standard hard drive or 256GB solid-state drive
- A quad-core i5 processor or higher
- A 1080p monitor or higher, though it’s better to have more than a single screen
When it comes to in-demand skills for freelance and remote programmers, some top ones include a passion for technology, strong coding, and great communication, as well as a knack for problem-solving and critical thinking.
Account managers are responsible for ensuring that each department at a company meets client needs. They essentially handle customer complaints and maintain positive client relationships.
Since account managers can work in various industries, including those that allow employees to be location independent, account management is one of the top professions suited to the digital nomad lifestyle.
Every account manager must be able to:
- Communicate. This is a critical skill for someone who will be in constant contact with C-suite executives as well as other team members such as sales reps and operations managers.
- Collaborate. They have to work closely with internal departments to ensure that they are meeting clients' needs.
- Gather and analyze data to better understand consumer behavior.
- Address client complaints.
- Develop and implement strategies that create long-term gains for their clients.
Demand for high-quality designs is high, particularly in the digital marketing and branding space. Over 80% of businesses think that there’s a strong correlation between creative design and business success.
If you have a background in graphic design, joining the digital nomad world is possible. The beauty of design is that it allows you to work both autonomously and remotely, two elements that are perfect for a nomadic lifestyle. Additionally, the different locations you work in may serve as inspiration for your design work.
There are plenty of opportunities to work on a freelance basis or with a company offering remote work.
Amid the growth of globalization and unprecedented digital connectedness, people need the help of translation services to communicate effectively. As such, the demand for bilingual and multilingual freelancers and remote workers is higher than ever.
Translator and interpreter jobs are expected to grow by 24% between 2020 and 2030, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That rate is much faster than average! What’s more, technical document translation is in high demand across several sectors such as customer service, healthcare, legal, and education.
So, if you are fluent in multiple languages, you may be able to use your skills to work from anywhere in the world.
Starting your digital nomad job search
Found a career you’re interested in? The next step is to begin your job search.
Your network is a good place to start. Check if your contacts are aware of any openings in your desired field.
Another great option is to use location-independent job boards.
You can check out the remote positions on sites like:
- WeWorkRemotely. The number one destination for finding the latest remote roles.
- RemoteOk. This job board has hundreds of job postings for remote roles ranging from copywriting to programming and designing.
- NoDesk. From startups to large distributed companies, this platform offers access to a large database of companies hiring remotely.
- Remotive. This platform provides a good mix of remote freelance and full-time jobs.
Alternatively, you can take your search to specialized job platforms that offer remote roles. These include:
- Nomads for a full-time job in a tech company
- Laskie, another platform for tech jobs
- ProBlogger for copywriting jobs
- Stack Overflow Careers for programming jobs
- ProZ for translation jobs
- 99Designs for graphic design jobs
You can also check out some job marketplaces that bring companies to you. Instead of the traditional route where you chase after companies with applications, the following platforms have companies present their opportunities to you. You simply fill out your profile once, and you’re ready to receive job opportunities that align with your interests.
Ready to be a digital nomad?
Digital nomad jobs aren’t just for tech professionals anymore. As our world becomes more digital and people demand more workplace flexibility, many careers are emerging in the remote working space.
This is good news for an aspiring digital nomad like yourself. It means you have options when it comes to finding the best possible job that supports a digital nomad or remote freelancer lifestyle. You can take your career to an area of the world where you feel most inspired.
That said, the path to a remote career may not be so clear-cut. For example, you may be interested in a company that doesn’t hire remote workers from a specific area that you’re interested in working from.
This is where a platform like Oyster comes in. With our powerful digital platform, the prospective employer can carry out remote hiring seamlessly. Oyster will take care of everything from global payroll to employee management.
Ready to make your digital nomad dream a reality? Check out Oyster’s Global Employment Pass for resources that will help you get hired anywhere.
Oyster is a global employment platform designed to enable visionary HR leaders to find, engage, pay, manage, develop, and take care of a thriving distributed workforce. Oyster lets growing companies give valued international team members the experience they deserve, without the usual headaches and expense.
Oyster enables hiring anywhere in the world—with reliable, compliant payroll, and great local benefits and perks.