How to have a city career from rural Australia

Man works remotely with a country view

Enough is enough, right? All this COVID-19 palaver has tipped us all over the edge and we just crave more space and freedom than ever.  

It’s been five months now and the vast majority of traditional office-based businesses have proven to themselves – and the rest of the world – that remote work is not only possible but that it’s probably the face of the future workforce.  

All we’ve really needed during COVID-19 is an internet connection and a computer after all. 

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rural man meeting online outdoors

So many of us office workers have spent a good chunk of our lives wishing we could move to the country or the seaside. Sadly, we’ve always felt trapped by the absence of regional jobs related to the careers we’ve worked so hard to build.

But, could the script have finally changed?

Could we now work remotely for our city jobs?

Is it possible to achieve the remote work dream?

It is not only possible, but a practice that is here to stay according to HR company CXC Global who studied the Australian Workplace Trends of 2019 and took a look at life across the past decade as well.

They say that remote work is an emerging trend with a consistent uptake.

For it to be successful however, they point out the need for the right management practices which hinge largely on the right technology.

Which technology?

Obviously, you need an internet connection and a computer set-up to do the job at hand, but the right programs to support a solid remote working policy are also essential.

CXC Global discuss the use of collaborative technology like Google Project Management, Asana, Slack or Trello to track time and manage deliverables while remaining in touch with the decentralised team.

They also talk about what professional meeting etiquette should look like for an online meeting with remote workers, as well as the need to be a visible worker and get together in person regularly.

Professional online meeting etiquette:

  • Make sure video is enabled
  • Make sure everyone is on separate screens
  • Be present. Don’t be distracted by the phone, your email – anything
  • Use agendas and take notes

[Source: CXC Global]

Rural girl on computer meeting

The International Workplace Group conducted a survey of 15,000 participants across 80 countries and discovered some very compelling facts:

  • 85 per cent of respondents confirmed that productivity had increased in their business as a result of greater flexibility
  • Over 4/5 of respondents confirmed that, when faced with two similar employment offers, they would turn down the one that didn’t offer flexible working
  • Over half of employees globally are working outside of their main office headquarters for at least 2.5 days a week
  • 65 per cent of businesses say flexible workspace helps them reduce CAPEX/OPEX, manage risk and consolidate their portfolio

AUSTRALIA

84 per cent of businesses are using flexible working to improve talent retention

[source: International Workplace Group]

This says to me, that yes, the dream of working remotely and having a city career is possible.

It also tells me that it works really well for both the employer and the employee with the right policies and practices in place.

How do we make the change to remote work?

Jo Palmer is the Founder and Managing Director at Pointer Remote, an online platform that connects employers and employees who are aligned with remote working arrangements.

She originally trained as a teacher and travelled the world with the skills she built throughout her career.

In the end, quite simply, her heart belonged in the bush.

Not wanting to abandon her career completely, she moved back to rural NSW and started Pointer Remote.

Country girl works outside on a picnic blanket

“Pointer Remote empowers people to access the career they want, from where they live,” says Jo.

“We all know that person that’s spent years gaining their university degree, spent 10 or 15 years in the corporate world, climbing the corporate ladder and then they fall in love with a farmer.

“They move to a rural location where the skills and knowledge and experience they’ve gained over their career is now sitting idle on a farm.

“Pointer Remote works with communities, businesses and individuals who understand that work is what we do, not where we go,” she says.

Her business is a job matching service.

To get started, you jump on the website and register. There is a registration process for both employers and employees.

On the Pointer Remote website, you’ll also find that Jo has developed a hub of resources, courses and certifications to breakdown any barriers to remote working.

It’s a two-sided hub of resources that supports both business and individuals to get established for remote work arrangements.

And it was for this resource hub that Jo won The Agrifutures Rural Women’s Award.

Video conferencing screen with dozens of people

If you’re serious about having a city career in rural Australia, Pointer Remote is well worth checking out.

Seek.com.au also now have a ‘work remotely’ option for you to filter your job searches.

And of course, there are other job boards you can access in search of remote employment, such as Remoters, Flexjobs, Indeed and LinkedIn.

Later this year, the Regional Australia Council 2031 will launch a national campaign to raise awareness of opportunities in regional Australia.

Rural jobs are one of the four pillars being focussed on by the collective of organisations auspiced by the Regional Australia Institute. nbn™ Co are among the collective.

If you’re thinking of making a rural move, aside from finding the right remote work opportunity, you’re also going to need to make sure you can access the internet where you’re going.

How to get rural nbn™ internet

SkyMesh make it really easy for you to figure this out with our Check Address feature on our website.

By using this feature, you can be certain that a property you’re looking to move into already has access to a nbn™ satellite or fixed wireless internet connection.

Ready to make the move? Find out what internet connection is available where you want to live.

CHECK ADDRESS

 

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Louise Hughes
Written by Louise Hughes

Louise has had a life-long love affair with beautiful words; writing because it drives her, and reading because it feeds her soul. She's the luckiest woman alive to be able to create clever content and intelligent customer experiences for a living.

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