You did all the things you were told to do. You went to school, nabbed an internship, and then landed a nine to five. (Or maybe it’s really an eight to eight.) Up until now, you’ve been convinced that there’s no way out — and then you heard about becoming a digital nomad and workationing.
Now you’re all-in — but where do you actually begin and how do you find a remote gig?
Whether you’re a developer, a creative, a consultant — really whatever your skill set is — your first step is to actually find remote work. As difficult as that might sound, there are a ton of websites out there that are designed to help freelancers (and those looking for something a little more permanent) find remote work.
Here are our favorites, sorted to help you find the best job board for your particular skill set.
Want to fast track your success? Check out our free webinar on How to Untether Your Life and Work from Anywhere, which will show you the exact process you can follow to source enough remote work to quit your desk job in 90 days or less (you can download a replay and watch instantly!). Pro tip: at the very least, steal the application strategy/spreadsheet/email tracking system we outline in the webinar – it’ll fast track your results and get you more work, more consistently. It works ESPECIALLY well when you’re looking for work on Craigslist.
Top 4 Sites for Engineers and Developers to Find Remote Work
Most companies looking for a developer are going to be looking for a specialist — that’s no different from non-remote work. That also means that you can get a good feel for hiring trends by scanning the websites below.
Here are the four best sites for developers looking for remote work:
Freelancer Map features companies offering both remote and international work opportunities. The roles range from junior to C-Level and the average hourly rate is $39.00/hr.
Github is the world’s leading open source software development hub — they were well-respected long before Microsoft acquired them. While mostly known as a way to host and share code, Github actually has a pretty robust job board.
Github frequently features jobs that are fully remote (or at least have a remote option).
3.) Ruby Now
If you’re a Ruby developer (and especially if you have Rails experience) then this particular job board is just for you. While the community outside of the job board isn’t very active anymore, the job postings are.
4.) Stack Overflow
A robust site for developers to find their next gig. Be sure to check out the salary calculator — though you should note that some companies that hire remote workers adjust the salary to the locale that you have chosen as your temporary home. It’s an understandable practice, and good to know for when you’re researching your next commitment.
Top 6 Sites for Creatives and Content Specialists to Find Remote Jobs
Freelancing has been at the heart of creative work for decades. Many creatives enjoy the variety of work that freelancing can bring you — finding inspiration from exploring many different projects.
It will come as no surprise that creative and content work is very popular among the digital nomad crowd; though luckily there is plenty of work to go around, just know that you will often have to act as your own project manager.
Dribbble is designed for… well, designers. To be specific, most jobs on Dribbble are targeted toward UX designers — though there are plenty of other jobs here, if you’re willing to dig for them.
Fiverr has a bit of a reputation as being cheap and not exactly the best place to launch a career — and we don’t necessarily disagree. While we’re almost obligated to mention Fiverr because of how popular it is, you’re going to have to fight for work on this platform and prove that work is worth more than your competitors. With that said, it’s not a bad place to diversify your portfolio (if, say, you’ve been working at the same agency or company for most of your career).
This well-known job board connects job hunters with gigs anywhere in the marketing pipeline — from design to copywriting to project management. Many of the companies offering roles are US based, but don’t let that keep you from trying. The site also offers trainings and career advice to keep you moving and active in between gigs. The rates are higher than what other sites offer (looking at you Fiverr), but also skew towards full or part-time employment vs. quick one off freelance work.
Cloudpeeps does a great job of breaking out content and marketing jobs into recognizable professional categories. If you’ve had to dig through a thousand jobs that fit your title but not your skillset, that’s something you should be thankful for.
Are you in PR, but generally have to search through the marketing tab? Cloudpeeps has you covered. Just check out their PR listings! The same level of thoughtfulness has been applied to other categories — meaning no matter what kind of job you’re looking for, Cloudpeeps can help you find it.
The granddaddy of online listings. Craigslist offers a platform primarily to find local opportunities. However, when looking for writing gigs, you can easily search through every city and apply, apply, apply! Expect to get small to medium sized gigs, but consider the impact of relationship building and keeping those clients on for future work.
6.) Writer’s Market
Writer’s Market provides everything for freelance writers from free tutorials to robust (but paid) training to multiple annual conferences. Whether you’re starting out as a freelance writer or you’re looking to get your novel published, their offerings have you covered.
If you’re looking to target a specific publishing niche, Writer’s Market features the Poet’s Market, the Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market, and the Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market. Their listings are added in real time and give you great access to writing gigs listed by publishers, agents and other industry professionals.
Their affiliated magazine, Writer’s Digest, is $21.96/year — and that gives you access to both the print and digital versions. Their magazine features tips and tricks from fellow writers and publishers.
To get access to the listings on Writer’s Market you can test the waters with a 1 month subscription at $5.99, try out a six month subscription for $24.99, or go for a full year at $39.99.
Top 2 Sites for Administrative and Support Personnel to Find Remote Work
Belay really drives home that remote work can mean achieving a greater work-life balance. Most of the roles are entry level, with a focus on re-entry, as well, for those who have been out of the game for a bit.
They provide listings for Bookkeepers, Virtual Assistants, and Webmasters to name a few. They also host a strong community that’s eager to share their knowledge with one another — which is always a good thing. As a contractor you can work as little as 10 hours a week, or up to 40+ hours, giving you extra flexibility for your schedule.
Forget the Commute mostly focuses on US based companies offering remote work in roles that require no to little previous experience. If you’re just starting off in a new field, Forget the Commute is an excellent place to get started.
They also offer a large variety of job types — meaning that even if you’re in a strange niche, you might be able to find work here.
Top 3 Sites for Managerial & Consulting Professionals to Find Remote Jobs
Freelancers sometimes get a reputation for being cannon fodder for executives who just need warm bodies to throw at projects. Toptal does not take this approach. Instead, Toptal focuses on bringing the best 3% of freelance talent in front of companies.
Toptal is geared toward developers, designers and financial experts who have a good chunk of experience in their respective fields. If you’re just starting off, Toptal probably isn’t for you — but if you have a wealth of experience to share with a prospective employer (and you feel that you can differentiate yourself from the pack), they’re your perfect fit.
Toptal offers up both online and offline networking events for talent.
Hubspot is ideal if you’re a marketer, developer or administrator. Most employers on Hubstaff are international, so you can choose a partner who fits your particular timezone best.
Looking for something a little faster paced? Angel List has you covered. As a hub for startups, AngelList is the go-to place to connect entrepreneurial talent with up-and-coming companies.
As you could probably expect, tech-centric freelancers will excel at finding opportunities on AngelList. With that said, be aware that many of the jobs posted here may substitute equity in place of a salary (or other benefits). If you’re looking for a fast-paced, high-risk lifestyle, though, this is where you need to be looking for your next gig.
Top 2 Sites for Remote Work Across a Variety of Sectors
1.) Power to Fly
Power to Fly focuses on empowering women to find their next challenge by advertising roles with companies that are focused on equality in the workplace. They list a variety of roles in many industries, spanning everything from the junior to senior level.
This is definitely a place you’ll want to check out if you have enjoyed working on female-centric teams before, or if you are looking to work on female-centric products. If a company’s ethos is important to you, then you will probably find a good match on Power to Fly.
As a job search source, VirtualVocations covers more than just the creative sector, however there are a few features that make it especially helpful for finding a gig doing creative or content work.
You can use custom filters to narrow down your results, allowing you to find exactly what you want — from your time zone to the kind of work you prefer (day shift, night shift, etc.), as well as just how “remote” you want your job to be (for example, do you want to kick the office completely to the curb, or do you want to just work remote a few days a week?).
Finding a Remote Job is Just The First Step
Finding a job that allows you to work from the road (or the beach, or the Alpine lodge, or wherever it is you want to be) is just the first step. Interested in learning more about how to live the digital nomad life?