The story of how the invisible hand of the market transferred me to a remote place

When 10 years of the Sisadmin routine and the soul require change, you again have to rely on the invisible hand of the market. Another interview by phone with a recruiter. Standard flow of questions, a couple of them in English. And again, “we will call you back.” Oddly enough, this time they called back. Technical interview. He spoke in detail about current responsibilities and functionality.

Even more surprising – they called back a third time, offered to move to another city, even two to choose from. Although the vacancy indicated “the possibility of remote work.” But well, you can move, the question, as usual, is motivation. This time, I did not have to spend a lot of time thinking. Since after the move I received an unusual (for me) offer – to go to another city for a month, work there and then return to my remote work. Challenge was accepted.

It was getting really interesting. Change the situation for a while, look at another city, and then work remotely – this was a sense of perspective. In addition, the trip promised to be free: they said that they would arrange it as a business trip.
The days until the offer were long and painfully, in parallel I had to cancel some pretty interesting offers (of course, with torment about “if they throw it there”), and finally day “D” arrived.

Immediately after the offer, I felt the power of an invisible hand when she wants and can do great things. Tickets – don’t worry. Housing – don’t worry. Directions: “Here is a diagram for you, here is a map, here is a schedule of official vehicles.”

An invisible hand carried me to the airport, then to the apartment rented by the company. A new city, new everything, google maps, job placement – a feeling of unreality of all this did not leave me for almost a week. Some kind of catch was constantly expected, such as saying “well, they joked and that’s enough.”

Free transport to work, open space – all this created the feeling of something European and unusual. Open space for me personally is more likely a minus (it’s somehow uncomfortable to sit in a small box on the shoulders), but taking into account the fact that all this will last no longer than a month is not so important.

Whatever the outside, but more importantly, what the company has inside. “Difficult” is the first impression. Complex management structure, complex regulations, a wild number of instructions, processes, information. In the early days, there was simply a feeling of overload (and this despite the fact that I spent a very long time in the academic environment and processing information for me is quite a routine process). For beginners, this is an unusual thing, but over time it became easier. Moreover, there is a competent introductory course for new employees, where information is provided in a dosed manner, in the form of small tasks, for about three months.

The second impression is a very serious attitude to the information security system. Unlike most Russian companies, it is not just implemented here, but also works. I can roughly imagine what efforts have achieved this, and it is really impressive. Serious attention is paid to business continuity – the processes are described in detail, how and what to do in the event of a power outage, the Internet, accidents.

The process of transition to udalenka was phased and gradual, but it is definitely pleased with its efficiency. A month of work offline turned out to be useful and made it possible not only to get acquainted with the structure of the company, internal rules, expectations of colleagues and management, but also to smoothly switch to a remote format, since the company already had a working algorithm for such a transition.

As a remoter, I have studied to the maximum everything that relates to this topic. In advance (like any admin taught by bitter experience) checked the instructions in practice. Upon returning home, they already rescued me a couple of times.

Also, regarding security, as a remoter, I had to think through and fill out action plans in the event of a power outage, the Internet, and even serious accidents in the apartment.

Among other things, when switching to a remote location, the employer asks a number of questions: do you have a comfortable room for work, do you have a fire extinguisher, if not, when are you planning to purchase it? The same thing with a first aid kit. I will not say for sure, but it seemed to me strange, but nonetheless tolerant.

Now directly about the process of remote work

First, I had to face a number of unusual sensations. It is very strange not to go anywhere in the morning, at first it is quite relaxing (it is almost impossible to oversleep work). Then there is a feeling of some endless sick leave when you are like at home, and it seems like you are not particularly free. In addition, in the evening at first there is no feeling of “returning home.” Gradually, you get used to it all, cease to notice something, but something remains. In general, it becomes more difficult to stay at home (especially on weekends), I want to “at least where, but away from here.”

Also, it is impossible to overcome the feeling of isolation (there are always some conversations, rumors, relationships, gossip in the team). And here you are “out of the way”, talking on formal occasions and it seems that something important is passing by. Sometimes you are very tempted to relax, and you need to firmly remind yourself that you are at work, even though you do not see the office.
Ah, well, I had to work in a different time zone, which also adds to the inconvenience at first. But this is easily treated by setting the clock on a working PC to the time zone of the office, I got used to it in a couple of days.

But the advantages, of course, are also many, they begin to be felt when (and if) it is possible to overcome the above. A huge amount of time is saved (road, lunch), money for food, no need to worry about clothes for every day (and this also saves both time and money), very quietly and calmly after open space.

Exceptionally sedentary work (this is the norm for a good system administrator, right?) Is not particularly useful for health, but as for me, it is better than climbing rusty glands without insurance in any weather, which was a common thing at the last place of work.

In general, the period of adaptation, as, however, always has not been linear. I had to face the specifics of udalenki face to face. Feel all pro and contra. It’s too early to draw conclusions. But one thing I can say for sure: electricity and the Internet are becoming very important resources, because the work must continue, and YOU are personally responsible for this. A couple of times there were blackouts, they really strained, despite the emergency plans studied and verified earlier.

But the most interesting, as always, is ahead: what will the invisible hand do next?

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