This year was for me the end of Thelia's adventure. It was an interesting experience for the past 3 years, I traveled a lot to promote this software. Unfortunately we didn't found the success expected and I needed a new exciting challenge.
When I looked for a new Job, I didn't look for companies only in my city but companies I would like to work with. For the project they have, the technologies they use, if they contribute to some open source project or best if they have their own open source project. And all of this without moving from my current house. If this company is in my city it will be ok. If not, I was ok to work remotely.
It was not really easy to find a company who accept to work with someone remotely. In fact I found 2.
The first one didn't want remote worker but after some discussion they were interested to try it. For other reason I didn't work for them but I know they have someone now who works remotely and I'm still in contact with them to exchange about some practice to enhance remote work. The second is wisembly, they already have one employee working remotely, He is in the same city where I live so it was easy for them to try again to work remotely with someone else.
Why working remotely ?
First of all you can stay where you live. It's not necessary anymore to move with all your family in a new city. Your wife or husband has maybe its own job and don't want to leave it, your children have their friend here.
You spend less time between your home and your office and this time can be used to work a little bit more and to stay more with your friends and your family.
You are less disturb. Nobody can interrupt you when you are focus on something important. There is no noise, you can really work silently if you want (it's not really my case).
And then, you can maybe work with a foreign company and maybe, if it's not a problem for you, with a company on a different timezone without moving from where you live.
How to work remotely ?
You found a company who accept to work with you remotely. But how to work with them ? It's not really different from when you work in an office. The big difference is the communication. You have to communicate often with them. Fortunately today you have lot of tools that facilitate the communication. Here a list of tools to use :
- slack a messaging app for teams. You muse have to create one and use it with your colleague
- appear a webRTC platform to create video conversations easily. It's free, it works well, create how many channel you need to exchange with your colleague. Create a dedicated channel for remote worker and connect a laptop in you office on it, they can connect on it all the day and see whats happen at the office.
- solid to manage easily your meetings. This tool combine to appear is a must have if you want a good meeting.
- a git forge : (github)(https://github.com), bitbucket or gitlab if your company don't already have one. The tool itself is not really important here but how you use it. You must have a public activity. Remote working is all about trust. So you must participate with this collaborative tools. Comment issues. Tell you understand or not a bug. Analyze your next feature and publish it. Commit often and push often. Comment your pull request.
- a time tracker like watson. It can help you to manage your time. I tried it but I always forget to start it...
- Skype : no it's a joke. Really.
As you can see, maybe you already have most of this tools. Moreover, gitlab is a fully remote company and the employees are not in the same country. So you can trust their tools to help you.
Nothing change in the organization at wisembly. Everyday we have a stand-up meeting and every two weeks a retrospective. We are connected on appear so we can participate like every one else to these meetings.
We go every two weeks to the office in Paris to meet physically our colleague, discuss about some important subject and eat and drink together. Those moments are important to know each other.
Does it work ?
Definitely Yes ! It's a very good experience. I think this life style must be adopt more and more by companies. It's a win-win deal. The employee has more time to share with his family and his friends and in the same time he can be more focus on his work. I work while my son is not at home, when he is here I stop and I spend my free time with him. I work more and more efficiently than in my previous job and I have more time to be with my son. A win-win deal !