Some of the best perks of being a web designer include the salary, flexibility, and, most importantly, the ability to work almost anywhere. So why not take your talents to cafés in Paris, the bumping streets in Rio de Janeiro, or beach towns in Australia? Companies all over the world are looking for web designers of varying experience, not only to help with websites, but also to provide new perspectives on efficiency, techniques, and usability. These factors add up to a fantastic cultural immersion experience, a chance to build an international client base, and something unique to put on your resume. So, start coding that dream web design job abroad today.
Why Work Abroad in Web Design
The personal and professional rewards of creating templates and coming up with clever URL names abroad are as many as there are Google results when searching for ninja kittens. Web designers can use their talent anywhere in the world; why shouldn’t they opt for the benefits that international experience provides?
Web designers primarily sit in front of a screen, working out coding problems, designing layouts, and determining technical requirements; this doesn’t really allow for a lot of adventure. However, working and living in a different country automatically increases the adventure level to higher bandwidths and new domains. In addition to expanding your coding palette, there will be opportunities to pick up new language skills, keep the creative juices flowing with freshly-squeezed tropical fruits, nourish the body with foreign cuisines, and stimulate the mind with a new world outside of the window.
Since web design is a global language, employers are often more than willing to hire foreign developers. Thankfully, web development is not only in demand everywhere, but it’s also recognized everywhere. The universal ring of scripted communication means that your skills are valid from the tip of Patagonia to the edges of Siberia, which isn’t true with degree recognitions for other fields, such as medicine or psychology. Take advantage of this!
Not only are web design jobs abroad a great addition to any resumé, but it’ll also serve as a talking point in future interviews. With experience in a foreign workplace, communication skills can be considered a strength, potentially even in another language. As one of the hottest positions in the current job market, web designers need something to make them stand taller than the rest, and working overseas is a great way to get that little extra oomph. Not to mention, the global connections and international client base that can be crafted by working abroad as a web designer.
No matter where you decide to play with fonts and drop that eyedropper, there is an outdoor adventure waiting. Consider the main foci of each geographical region before packing your suitcases and sending off all your artsy job applications, and remember: there’s no “bad neighborhood” in this field.
China. From Hong Kong to Shanghai, China is always on the cusp of excellence in the design industry and field of technology. With so many big cities, the opportunities for employment in web design within the Chinese industry are endless. In Hong Kong, there are more Western-style web design jobs, with start-up companies hiring all over the city. In Beijing and Shanghai, corporations and big companies are looking for foreign web designers to bring in as full-time employees or interns.
Argentina. Home to Buenos Aires, one of the largest cities in South America, and its rapidly-growing skilled labor force, Argentina is the perfect place to find a web design job abroad. With an atmosphere and culture that is largely influenced by Spanish and Italian immigrants, Buenos Aires not only has a lot of web design employment opportunities, but it’s also a fantastic place to live and enjoy a great social life. Argentina is also home to some of the greatest adventure traveling in the world. Why not take a weekend off in Patagonia to trek underneath the stars of the southern hemisphere or take a winery tour in Cordoba?
Australia. The Land Down Under is full of threatening wildlife and breathtaking beauty. From the Great Barrier Reef and gnarly western surfing waves to long stretches of deserts in the center, Australia is a land of wild-ranging variety. It’s also full of cities with great web design job opportunities: Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, and Brisbane. The cost of living is a little high in Australia, but the pay is great as well. Since English is the native language, potential web designers needn’t worry about working and living in another language.
Web Design Jobs Abroad
From full stack-developers to art designers, the range of roles and flexibility of work abroad in web design is wider than Adobe’s color spectrum. Zoom in on your skill, magnify your interests, and start scripting your next story abroad.
Front End Developer. While most companies around the world today have functioning websites, a lot of have not been updated since they were created. If a designer has expertise in UI or UX development, they’ll be able to find jobs and projects with companies that desperately need their websites refurbished to modern standards. Chances are, there’s also companies out there that need a website to begin with, especially in developing countries of Central America or Africa.
Art Designer. Just as many organizations are looking for new websites and updated sites, a lot of companies need logo and layout redesigns. Not all organizations abroad have access to designers who are up-to-date with logo trends and user experience styles. On the other hand, the learning experiences from other nations’ design styles are many, so keep an open mind and mix your style with something new (or, really, really ancient!).
App Developer. Apps aren't websites, but they use the same set of skills and work closely with internet content. Technology is developing faster than ever before, and the demand to keep companies at the forefront of these technological advances is high. Whether your speciality lies in iOS for iPhones or Android formatting, app’s are requested for both companies and direct users.
Benefits & Challenges
Resume Builder. What sets the average computer science graduate or summer boot camp student apart from the rest of the pack? Experience working abroad in web design, where they’ve shown their ability to work in a team structure, in a foreign culture, and maybe even a foreign language, with limited resources. Employers immediately notice international work experience, and appreciate any candidate’s flexibility and fearlessness.
Work Cultures. Workplaces abroad can be great places to gain valuable experience, but it can be a challenge to adapt to different standards and workplace practices. For example, in Germany, punctuality is almost law, if an employee is not five minutes early, they’re late. However in Peru, showing up ten minutes late is the norm. Grow professionally while stretching adaptability and adapting new work ethics.
Global Demand. In the era of modern technology, every organization and company needs a web designer to either update, create, or maintain websites. From companies beside the Colosseum in Rome to an agency that sends tours to the Great Wall in Beijing, there are thousands of web design jobs out there for those willing to look. And, as an additional perk, after project completions, some companies might even keep you on as remote workers while you start developing your freelance portfolio on some sunny beach in the Caribbean!
Especially in creative jobs, inspiration is key and innovation is essential. Break boring office routines back home and, instead, draw daily motivation from new lifestyles, smells, tastes, and circles of friends. Learn new mindsets, pick up a few fresh work methods, and take advantage of the universalness of web design jobs.