Posts tagged with "freelancers"

Top Freelance Tech Jobs

Ever since 2019, a series of unexpected turn-of-events has swept across the world. The most influential one being the Coronavirus pandemic, which resulted in a worldwide quarantine. After months and years of trying to get used to this new norm, people have started making this lifestyle as comfortable as they can. Some people are looking for new, more flexible, remote job opportunities, others are creating a business of their own. And one of the top self-employed businesses of the year is the tech industry. It’s not only something you can do remotely, but it’s also indispensable in our present lives and will continue to grow and take over all industries. This article will go over all trending freelance businesses in the tech industries you can start today!

Tech Consultant

Just as employees need help navigating the world of online audio or video communication, CEOs, company owners, managers, and even other freelancers are often looking for tech consultants to help them take charge of this new norm. These freelance consultants are usually hired on a one-time basis, and after the consultation is complete, the freelancers receive their payment and look for new clients. This is a great opportunity for those who already have a few contacts they can rely on. This is also a job that requires flexibility in financial areas. Some months you may have new clients every day, while others could be more quiet. But at the end of the day, a good tech consultant is highly sought-after, generously compensated, and it’s a fun, diverse job that never gets boring. It’s great for gathering new contacts, and broadening your horizon, and/or portfolio.

Remote Customer Service

Depending on your expertise, you can land great customer service opportunities. Because most companies are now operating completely remotely, at least one person is hired as a part of the IT team to help with technological difficulties. This isn’t something that’s difficult for most people familiar with tech. But a position like this presents a lot of different obstacles to the employee, meaning you need to be flexible as well as have fairly deep knowledge in all problems that may come your way. Some days you’ll be helping with network issues, while other days you’ll be searching for viruses. While this may seem mundane for some people, it’s an up-and-coming area of the tech industry, and for those starting out, this could be the perfect stepping stone.

Live Streaming Technician

Everyone is getting used to meetings, talks, and basically any form of communication migrating to online platforms. This is understandably overwhelming and comes with its own flaws. This is why most companies are now hiring “streaming technicians” to help ease the experience of employees. These technicians commonly specialize in sound and camera, OBS, live streaming, ZOOM, and the basic workings of online communication. While this position requires flexibility and patience, companies of all industries and sizes are looking for specialists in this area.

Technical Sales Consultant

Technical sales specialists, or sales engineers, focus on complex technical products aimed at businesses. They usually work in professional and scientific services and manufacturers of computers and electronic products. Some areas of employment within this industry don’t require full-time availability or in-person working. One of these areas is becoming a consultant. This not only means having flexible hours, and a project-based salary, but this is also a gateway towards a wide industry with a lot of potential!

Network & Communications Specialist

People who work in network and communications management are a part of the IT team, and help a company or organization achieve its goals for profitability, by implementing specific computer systems. Today, a specialist like this doesn’t need to be employed full-time, and most of the time doesn’t even have to be on-site to get the job done. Therefore, this is an excellent opportunity for the foundation of a freelance self-employed business.

Overall, there is a lot of potential in the tech industry, and new positions emerge on a daily basis. New software and tech solutions are being introduced every hour. And with more and more people relying on their safety and reliability, there’s an ever-growing need for specialists in the industry who could ease this migration to the tech world.

From consultation to customer service, there are thousands of opportunities people should take advantage of. Even if your interests in tech are only on a hobby level, a beginner’s knowledge is appreciated by many. Positions vary from full-time employment to project-based employment, but overall, a freelance career built on technical knowledge is definitely a path worth taking in this day and age. Additionally, it’s one of the best investments young adults can make for the foundation of their futures.

Filmstrip illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Best Places to Live × Work

The Best Places to Live and Work Abroad in 2021—InternationalLiving.com

While just about every country is willing to provide a tourist visa that lets visitors hang around for a few months, most will not grant permission to live and work within their borders without a job offer from a local employer. Some offer long-term residence visas that let expats legally live in the country, but they don’t typically allow for work. A new report from the editors at International Living highlights four countries where it’s possible to find easy access to a residence visa—and the permits that allow for work as well.

Source: International Living

It’s clear that an increasing number of Americans want a different life and are looking for countries where they can live and work legally. But the options are limited without a local employer willing to provide a job.

Expats able to earn from anywhere do have a few good options, however, according to International Living’s report. While a small collection of countries welcomes outsiders, who can qualify for the necessary visas, four in Latin America and Europe stand out as the best options in terms of cost, ease, and timing.

Panama

If your goal is to live and work remotely overseas, but remain close to U.S. borders, Panama is your best bet. Direct flights land in Panama City from at least nine U.S. cities and take between three and seven hours, depending on where you’re coming from.

Beyond proximity, Panama offers what it calls the Panama Friendly Nations Visa, a special program whereby nationals of certain countries (including the U.S. and Canada) can apply for permanent residence, which comes with a Panamanian cédula, the local ID card. That cédula is permanent, allowing holders to come and go as they please, as would a born-and-bred Panamanian. Separately, the program also allows holders to request a work permit through the Ministry of Labor, though that’s part of a different process.

Obtaining a temporary cédula takes about eight days. It will take another two days to obtain a multiple-entry visa that’s necessary so an individual can come and go as they wait out the roughly five-month process for the government to issue a permanent cédula. Once a cédula has been obtained, a person can then apply for a work permit from the Ministry of Labor, which will take about a month.

To start the cédula process, you’ll need basic documents—passport, proof from the FBI that there is no criminal record—and $5,000 in a Panamanian bank account, plus $2,000 for each dependent. And to obtain a work permit, then you’ll need to set up a Panamanian corporation (which can be disbanded after a year).

Uruguay

If speed is more important, then Uruguay is a great choice. Here, expats can land at the airport with the correct collection of documents, and if they already have a pre-scheduled filing date with the immigration office that day, they can file their paperwork and have a temporary cédula that afternoon or the next day. All that’s required is a birth certificate and an apostilled police record (meaning it has been authenticated and is acceptable across international borders). They will also need to show that they have the financial means to support themselves with a provable stream of income from anywhere in the world.

With a temporary cédula, they will also have immediate access to the state healthcare system, or they can immediately buy access with a local, private healthcare plan, which will cost about $70 to $350 a month, depending on the bell and whistles they want.

To manage the process themselves, expect to pay about $600 to $700. But they will also need to have a proficient level of Spanish, as none of the paperwork is in English. Otherwise, hire an attorney. It will be quicker and more efficient and will cost between $1,000 and $2,000.

­Portugal

Portugal has two visas that would apply to someone wanting to live and work on the Iberian Peninsula: D2 and D7. Technically, the D2 is for independent workers and entrepreneurs, while the D7 is for those who are retired or earning passive income. In practical terms, the D7 will make sense for most people, even if they’re not retired, because it’s based on income. The D2 requires proof that an expat can support themselves as a freelancer and can begin issuing Portuguese invoices on which the business will be taxed, though the tax rate is fixed at 20% for 10 years.

With the D7, instead, a person will need only to show that they have €8,000 (about $9,700) per person in a Portuguese bank account and that they have the equivalent of €30,000 ($36,400) in a bank account back in their home country.

To apply for either a D2 or D7 visa, an expat must enroll in the Portuguese tax system and become a tax resident. That requires obtaining a Portuguese tax number before they can even apply for a visa. And for that, they will need a sponsor, which can be a law office, accounting office, or migration office.

For that reason, they’ll need to hire a pro to walk them through the process and be their sponsor for the tax number. All in, that will cost you between €1,000 and €2,500 (about $1,200 to $3,000). The process will require two to four months to complete.

As a freelancer, an expat will also want to apply for Non-Habitual Resident status, or NHR, which is issued to people who’ve never lived in Portugal before and move to the country. With NHR status, income earned outside the country is exempt from taxes. They will have to file a Portuguese tax return and declare the income, though they’ll owe no taxes on it. The other benefit of this is that it shows Uncle Sam they’re a tax resident of another country, which then helps trigger their eligibility for the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion.

A person is eligible to apply for Portuguese citizenship and a passport after five years of residence, though they have to demonstrate sufficient knowledge of the Portuguese language.

Czech Republic

It’s a two-step process in Czech Republic. First step: apply to join the živnostensky (zivno) list. This isn’t specifically for foreigners. It’s a trade license for any Czech resident who works independently, be that a plumber, masseuse, artist, or whoever. That will take a week at most. Zivno in hand, they can then apply for a one-year, temporary residence visa.

They must apply for a residence visa at a Czech embassy outside of the Czech Republic, show they have housing (a notarized lease agreement) for the full-length of the visa they seek, up to one year. That means they’ll need to visit the Czech Republic to arrange that. Some expats will move to Prague, obtain their housing and zivno, then take the train to nearby embassies in Berlin, Vienna, or Bratislava and complete their application.

They will need a signed letter from their bank stating that they have the equivalent of 125,000 Czech crowns on deposit (about $5,700). That will need to be translated into Czech, which a visa agency can handle. Be sure the account has a debit card, which must be presented at the application meeting at the Czech embassy, because officials will want to see it—it’s proof that a person can access the account.

An FBI criminal background check is required, though as an American an expat can also go to the U.S. embassy in Prague and sign an affidavit attesting to their criminal-free background. Along with a passport and an application form, that’s pretty much all the documents an applicant needs.

To hire a local agency to help with the process, it should cost less than 15,000 crowns (about $685) for everything. The embassy fee is a separate 5,000 crowns (about $230).

Once the temporary visa expires after a year, it can easily be traded in for a renewable, two-year long-term residence visa. After five years as a legal resident, a person is eligible to apply for Czech citizenship and a Czech passport, which like the Portuguese passport, is an EU passport and thus gives them free rein to live and work anywhere in the EU.

The full report on the best places to live and work in 2021, including more information for immigration experts in each of the countries mentioned, can be found at: The Best Places to Live and Work Abroad in 2021.

International Living has launched its new “Work From Anywhere” resource, devoted to coverage of innovative money-making strategies, ways to build a portable income, tips for boosting health and well-being, methods to maximize Social Security, and so much more. More information can be found, here.

Art for the Now

COVID-19 is ravaging the cultural field to an extent not seen since the AIDS crisis. It is forcing us to re-envision how we collaborate, to consider new types of programming and interactions that can flourish in digital space, and to shift our resources as we begin to reach the public differently.

Vera List Center has announced a new initiative, Art for the Now, intended to provide direct support to some of the most vulnerable in our communities; artists, freelancers, teachers, and students. Their goal is to raise $15,000 by June 1, and to make it possible, they are selling fine art prints commissioned from artists such as Dan Graham, Sarah Morris, Matt Mullican, Paul Ramírez Jonas, and Fred Wilson.

Their plan is a radical one: to significantly raise the scope of our honoraria, expanding whom we pay and how much. Starting now and running through the fall, for each online event we will offer both presenter fees and ten modest stipends for members of the public.

The prints are available here.

$750 will get you an artwork of your choice and the assurance that 100% of the income received by the VLC will be directly passed on to their online program participants.

If you prefer, you can donate an amount of your choosing here.

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