Singapore made the top 10 in the list globally, while Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia ranked 34th, 41st, and 58th respectively.
As more organisations globally adopt hybrid working arrangements, remote working has become the norm for many countries — some more so than others.
On that note, NordLayer's Global Remote Work Index took a look at the top countries for remote work. Assessing and comparing 66 countries, the ranking took into account four different factors:
- Digital security
- Socio-economic attractiveness
- Physical and digital comfort
- COVID-19 response
Factoring in all these considerations, these are the top 10 countries for remote working:
In the full list, Malaysia ranked 34th, and Thailand 41st. India and Indonesia ranked 49th and 58th respectively.
The four factors
The study also provided a more in-depth explanation on how it ranked the countries.
In terms of digital security, a safe remote work location has adequate infrastructure, response, and legal capacities in protecting remote workers, their data, privacy, and online work from cybercrime. In Asia, Malaysia ranked 20th, with Singapore not far behind at the 24th spot. Thailand, India and Indonesia ranked 40th, 43rd, and 51st respectively.
Meanwhile, socio-economic attractiveness factors in whether the country has political stability, affordable local prices, and is accessible: Singapore ranked 36th. At the same time, Thailand, India, and Malaysia took the 46th 47th 49th spot. Indonesia took the 61st spot.
Physical and digital comfort looks at how comfortable to be in the country– online and offline. According to the study, co-working spaces with quick internet speed are crucial for remote workers, and good general infrastructure and social life are essential for comfortable living. Singapore clinched the 2nd spot overall, followed by Malaysia (38th), Thailand (42nd), India (59th), and Indonesia (61st).
Lastly, the study looked at countries' COVID-19 response. While NordLayer acknowledges that there are no guarantees, countries with high overall vaccination rates and swift pandemic response history are deemed "safer to be in during the pandemic". Thailand was ranked 2nd overall, while Singapore (10th), Malaysia (16th), and Indonesia (46th) also made the top 50.
Image / Global Remote Work Index