How to Get and Work Remotely as a Software Developer in Nigeria
This is not another guide on how to get a remote job but my personal experiences when looking for one and keeping it.
As I turned 19 as at the time of writing, I saw this article about a friend (though not really close)— Shedrack. I really love the article because everything mentioned there are critical tips you need to take note of. You should probably read it, you’ll learn two or more tips there.
In this article, I’ll be sharing my personal experience on getting a remote job as a software developer in Nigeria.
Lets do a quick intro:
I will be taking you guys on a journey from getting and keeping a remote job
Build stuff and Contribute to Open Source
Building a really cool app/project/software won’t necessarily get you a remote job, but your experience in building them. You need to be able to work with any kind of project.
Contributing to Open Source projects gives you the experience to be able to work with a variety of projects and teams. And that’s what you need when it comes to working as a remote software developer.
I have junks of useful software, python scripts, and batch/bash scripts that I wrote to fix issues I face. Though recently, I have open sourced one or two of the junk software/script I have writen for my self on Github (My Github Repo).
I would say attending meetups, conferences and hackathons is one of the best things I do. The reason is, it opens me up to the world of Tech. Yea! I get to know more about tech trends, meet people, build stuff and collaborate on projects.
A lot of tech companies visit these events to source for good developers, it could just be your lucky day. You could even meet some one who knows a remote company that needs your stack.
Meetups help one work with a variety of people, learn to interact, and collaborate on projects (It necessarily doesn’t have to scale, but the experience you get is gold).
Join a Tech Community
You should consider joining a tech community because opportunities can pop out from anywhere. I got the information about the current company I work for on Python Nigeria slack channel. I applied, got interviewed (for months) and boom! I got hired. I never thought it’ll be so easy, but I was ready.
I had previously applied to different remote companies like ScrapingHub and got rejected due to one or two things. I think joining communities really just gave me the much needed edge — A wider range of opportunities.
Build a Good Profile/CV/Online Resume
Yea, this is very important. Companies will always ask for your CV, your stack and things you’ve achieved.
Just like these tips from Shedrack on building online resume:
1. Have a complete and up-to-date LinkedIn profile.
3. Make good use of the summary section — sell yourself.
4.Prompt recruiters to get curious about you — include a call to action. (E.g. See my github repositories at github.com/yourprofile.)
All in all, make it simple, so important information can be passed through. Also update your CV every time.
Build Good Communication Skills
This is also very important, because no remote company will hire a developer with bad communication skills. Communication between remote workers isn’t easy due to many differences like timezone, language, disposition and even culture sometimes.
You need to work on how to communicate with your teammates to be able to pass the information you want in a way that won’t be disrespectful to them. Start a discussion on the projects you are working on, try to get the picture of what you guys are building, how to make it better and so on. This helps a lot.
Honestly, having bad communication skills is bad business, it kills one’s work experience, wastes time and passes across wrong information. I was zero in my communication skills, and had to work on myself gradually. It helped me better understand my team members, and how to interact with them efficiently.
Be Prompt and Active at Standups/Meetings
Meetings and standups are vital moments for you and the company you work for, because it is when crucial issues around the company are discussed. Apart from the monetary benefit of working with the company, there are things you need to know about the company, to help you increase the company's value.
Make it an habit to be prompt at meetings (e.g video calls). It portrays you in a good light, and also helps you work in line with the company’s goal and what is required of you to reach the goal.
Do your Standups, so your employer can be assured that you are doing your job. Standups acquaint everyone with what you are working on, especially as it’s a remote job. Always make sure that whatever you do each day is on your Standups.
Deal with Distractions
Distraction is a thing you should care about when working remotely. Remote workers get easily distracted due to the fact that the work happens from the comfort zone of homes, with no one to supervise what we are doing.
These days, you can get easily distracted by tons of feeds from social networks, e-mails, apps and websites notifications you are subscribed to.
It’s just best to turn on only important apps, like in my case, Slack, Whatsapp, Jira, Gmail, and Github.
Like I said earlier, this is not a guide, but my personal experience on getting and working remotely as a software developer.
Thanks for reading. Kindly clap and share too.