Enquiring about remote work when the company is in a different time zone: is it a bad idea?

Apart from the limited communication time, is there any other reason why this would be a bad idea?

The work is something that can be done 100% remotely.

Then there's the issue of payment (not sure how that works across countries, to be honest).

Just trying to weigh my options before reaching out: the country the company is located in is 8 hours ahead.

Edit: this would be for freelance work


  • Hi Hamidah,

    My clients is mainly in the US and we have no issue to work together because of the time zones. East a slightly different situation, if the people you have to work with also from there it might worth to know a. bit of their culture and generally how they handle a argument etc..

    Also case of payment to look for a platform fi. Wise that has good convertion rate between currencies and follow the ups and down of the rate.

  • Hi

    You mention the company is 8 hours ahead, that's going East; China, Hong Kong, Australia, Singapore etc.

    As has already been said make sure your agreement works for you and the legals are completley pinned down - in the knowledge the legals are likely to be useless in practical terms.

    Getting money out of China can be incredibly hard, you have to be aware that if you need to resort to the legals even if they are under English Law - their easy option is not to turn up, you win by default, but they know there is no practical way for you to actually collect the money, and you get left with any UK bills.

    Personally I'd work on a cash up front basis, or 50% on booking and the ballance imediatly on delivery, alternativly work through a 3rd party site who would pay you - ie promote your service through a paying site where the site gets paid and then pays you.

    Going west is far less risky and I've done so on many occasions, Australia is fine too, China I say no to now.



  • Hi Hamidah I would second everything Sandrine and Vicki have said. Due to the time difference it's important that you have the workflow and process for feedback very clear and in writing so that they are understanding of your time and the difference between days and hours.

    A good way to look at it if your hours are a bit later (or earlier) in the day than the standard 9-5 is to find something else to do with that extra time in the morning or evening. Work on personal projects or develop another skill if you can. I have a friend in the UK working for a company in New York so his hours are more like 12-8 or 2-10 sometimes. He uses the morning to write scripts :)

    Good luck!
  • I reckon as long as each party is clear on expectations and timeframes (and you get advice from an accountant re invoicing), you should be good to go!
  • Hi Hamidah!
    Regarding time zones, it depends iif they ask for immediate feedback and fast turn-around which could be a problem if you're sleeping when they're active.

    Invoice and money-wise, it depends if you're acting as a freelancer or an employee. Freelancer: you state your rates, you ask for upfront payments or use an escrow system to be sure to be paid (Or use one of those freelnacing website that do just that)... You'll have to be sure that the work you conduct is compatible with UK laws (that's a no-brainer), and within the remit of UK self emplyment laws as well. You're the boss.

    If you're an emplyee, your contract has to adhere to UK employment law so in short they need to draw a contract that is watertight on your side. Generally that means the company has a UK office or lawyer that acts as a middle-person. You could also be working under an umbrella company, but I am not entirely familiar with the concept, so either someone more knowledgeable will chime-in or you can look out for ressources online.

    As a freelancer I work a lot with company in the US, some via freelancing platforms (So payment is not a problem) or directly (and I'd take an upfront payment, generally 1/3).
    Be mindful of exchange rates when you're quoting as well, they may vary a lot, so it's wise to have add a bit of leeway as well...

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