This is our most recent edition of a day in the life of a remote worker, freelancer and go getter. Joining us today is Clemence Houngbadji. The Search Remotely team found her story and experience very compelling, please read below and get inspired!
What is your full name and job title?
Clemence Houngbadji, Accounting Assistant
What is your email?
Tell me about yourself and what it is that you do?
I have a Bachelor degree in Accounting from INSTITUT CERCO. I graduated in 2013. Some of the classes that I took that are the basis of my skill in expertly handling my day-to-day work are: Accounting Management, Math, Data Analysis and Computer Science.
Before accepting the contract offer from Search Remotely, I served as a customer and finance manager with over 5 year’s professional experience in the domain of Information Technology Education, Real Estate, Banking, and Hospitality. My experience and skills span across customer acquisition and relationship management, financial modeling, product development and account management. I also consult to provide financial analysis to support startups to help them gain a better insight on product development.
Even though I maining work in accounting, the functions of accounting, banking and finance touches upon every arm of the business. That is why I have been so successful as the ‘jack of many trades.’
Please describe your day-to-day business activities or what does a typical day look like for you as a remote accounting assistant?
For me a workday begins by getting up early before the sunrises. Next I set up my work space. Then I begin to create a list to prioritize my daily tasks. The most important tasks, I start first and plow through them. By then, its lunch. I take a break. Then I resume my tasks. I also take the time to touch base with my clients to provide them with updates on my progress, to request additional information if needed and discuss any potential challenges. By then, I look at the clock. The day has raced by, and the day is done.
What are the key characteristics of success that you bring to your job?
I’m hardworking, well disciplined, with an open mind. I’m also bilingual, fluent in French and English. Not all accounting assistants are fluent in two languages. This means that I add value to multinational companies and nongovernmental agencies who predominantly speak French as well as those who predominately speak English.
When did you start working remotely as a digital nomad and how did that come about?
I started my career in 2019. I had been working as an accounting assistant and in business development for about two years for a small company called IMPROTECHNOLOGY located in Accra-Ghana. Then Covid-19 Pandemic hit and I started working remotely as a digital nomad in 2020.
Please explain how your work has changed from 2019 to now. Are you using different tools or apps?
From 2019 to now, I have learned a lot. I use different kinds of tools or apps like Canvas, Powtoon and Adobe for creativity. I have also learned how to use Irium Software for preparing and presengint accounting reports.
What would go down as the biggest achievement so far and what makes you so proud of this?
I enjoy helping the companies I work for to save money based on my analysis. I also help my clients to grow. They benefit greatly from my hard work. Also as a native of a French-speaking country (Benin), I’m the first person in my family who speaks fluent English in addition to French. It was a great challenge that I had to take up in just 3 months of learning.
Do you have any favourite cafes, places or coworking spaces that you like to work remotely from when not at home and why are these your favorite?
I prefer to work quietly at home, the field of accounting can be very complicated. There are so many accounting principles, rules, and guidelines that must be followed. Therefore, I need to focus intently on the financial numbers and data and try to avoid interruptions and a lot of social interactions. This helps me to minimize the chance for errors.
My clients want very much the expectation of few accounting and financial errors when my tasks are completed.
How do you want to improve yourself in the next year?
I want to take some online courses in accounting and business development, to add value and to be able to offer expanded services to my clients.
Do you have any recommendations for software or tools which are invaluable to you as a digital nomad and how do they help you to stay productive?
I use the MS Office basic tools such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, MS Outlook for emails and Google Meetings, Zoom, Cisco Webex or Skype for virtual meetings with clients. I also do some work tasks manually and use the traditional accounting and bookkeeping journals.
If you could give one bit of advice to anybody out there that is dreaming about working remotely what would that be?
Working from home is extraordinaryily satisfying. It can also help to save your transport costs. You can meet and work with professionals all over the word and earn money in other currencies. Working internationally can open a lot of doors for professional opportunities.