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Here's my situation at the moment - I graduated last year with a physics degree from a decent uni, and I have since been working as a software engineer on a graduate programme with an aerospace company. I enjoy programming very much and I've been doing it for years, both before and during university, getting experience in various languages including C++, C#, Python and Java and dabbling in some web stuff.

I will be with my current company for around another year and a half until I have finished with the graduate programme and I reach a natural decision point - do I keep working where I am now, do I do something similar in a different company or do I try for something totally different? What I'm leaning towards is this - I'd like to keep programming but escape the office/cubicle environment as I really don't see myself being compatible with it long-term. I like the look of what some people are doing as software freelancers - travelling pretty much anywhere they please and working remotely over the internet. Travel is another passion of mine and I have always wanted to integrate it with my work.

Anyway, my question is this - what are the common sources of work for people doing this? Is it possible to get proper contract work where you can code remotely, or are people exclusively getting more 'unofficial' jobs from sites like Upwork? Of course there are a lot of contractors working in many different companies (including the one I'm with at the moment) but they still seem to be tied down to the office life so I don't think that the traditional contractor route is for me.

Thanks for the help and I'm happy to provide more info if it will be useful!

  • where are you based, US or elsewhere? – user3244085 Nov 20 '16 at 14:38
  • Hey - I'm a UK citizen. – user3621637 Nov 20 '16 at 14:49
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    This Q/A could be interesting for you. – Mario Nov 20 '16 at 15:19
  • @user3621637 then I'd recommend two ways for finding work: your own network (I know, you need a network first) or contacting agencies such as Teksystems. Those agencies have all the contacts and will most likely have projects for you. You will be paid by them and your contract will be with them, but as long as you get the rate you want it shouldn't matter. Also: they pay on time which is nice. – user3244085 Nov 22 '16 at 15:06
  • Thanks for the comments so far - I realise something like this would take some work in advance so I'm just trying to work out what the options are :) – user3621637 Nov 22 '16 at 20:13
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There are several options to get remote work. I think freelancing is not strictly implied. There are several highly succesful companies that only have remote workers. I would suggest that you also look into these options. This can come with the benefit of a steady Job. Gitlab is an example. There are many openings to be found if you look into specific jobs allowing remote. The hacker news monthly hiring post has these for example.

If you are going intofreelancing you can go for:

  • freelance marketplaces (upwork)

  • freelance communities (gigster)

  • agencies

  • personal network

  • Well this is the Freelancing SE after all, so freelancing is implied. :) – user3244085 Dec 3 '16 at 12:43
  • The way the question is phrased it is not clear that a remote job is considered. – snorberhuis Dec 4 '16 at 18:45
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I believe the question is a good one. Having some experience in this field, I believe, you should do as much research as possible on your own. My answer is, it's not intuitive. It depends on what kind of coder you are, your resourcefulness, etc.

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