A portable career is ideal for an expat as it allows you to seamlessly move from one country to the next without any significant retraining. A portable career provides you with the freedom to move where you choose while maintaining a professional identity – and a continuous income – to support your chosen lifestyle.
Why portable careers are a reality today
In the past it wasn’t as easy to move to your favourite beach paradise and continue earning a good income as it is today. But with today’s advances in technology that include high-speed internet connections and the ability to connect and hold meetings with voice-over IP programs like Skype and Slack, you can take almost any career abroad and maintain client bases in other countries, just as easily as if you were living down the road.
Characteristics of portable careers
- High Demand: Portable careers tend to include skills sets that are in high demand in many parts of the world – this could be anything from teaching to healthcare where the demand for these services outweighs the local availability of talent. In these cases, employers are often willing to pay for licensing or work permit documentation to employ these skilled workers
- Global market: Many portable careers focus around careers that are not limited to a local business. This can include anything from running an online business to providing services online – whether you are a writer, artist, coach or videographer.
- Not location specific: Law and medical degrees are two examples of careers where your credentials are not accepted everywhere and may require that you take country-specific exams before you can practice. A truly portable career is not location specific and involves credentials that are universally accepted.
Top portable careers
English teachers: If you are trained to teach English as a second language you are often very successful at finding work abroad. To ensure your qualifications are recognised widely, it is important you receive your training with a recognised international standard school.
IT: If you are skilled in IT or ICT– then you can literally work anywhere in the world where you can communicate with those around you. IT skills are in short supply globally and if you have a proven track record, then the world is literally your oyster.
Financial services: You may have to learn the standards of the country you are moving to, but at its core, the financial services industry is the same the world over and skilled financial professionals are always in demand.
Construction: If you have a professional degree in construction, you are likely to find job opportunities at all levels across the world. Whether you are a plumber or an engineer, the chances are your services are transferrable and in high demand in countries experiencing good growth like Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Web Designer: In fact, any career that is internet-based is easily transferrable from country to country. Virtual teaming and global collaboration is common, allowing bloggers, designers and User Experience professionals to work from any corner of the globe.