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Women at Work

Love For Tech Took Her From Side Hustles To A Full Time Design Job At Hearst

Ayana Palisuc is a motivated UI/UX designer that lives and works in the Philippines. She kicked off her career as a freelance designer during her second year in college. Six years later she says that she’s still passionate about her craft. Last year PowerToFly helped Ayana land her dream job as a full time UI/UX designer for Hearst. She now works for the New York based media powerhouse from the comfort of her home office in the Philippines.


In celebration of her first year anniversary with Hearst, we spoke with Ayana about her typical work day, her secret to crossing everything off of her to-do list, and how PowerToFly helped her secure a salary that’s 80% higher than her previous freelance pay.

How would you describe a typical work day?

Since Hearst is New York based, I work on east coast time, starting at 9:00 a.m. The first thing I do is to check my email and messages on Slack. Most of the time I talk to Theo, Hearst’s Digital Studios VP of Engineering. He assigns me tasks. I also communicate with Romina, the Project Manager and Nazat, the QA Engineer. I try to finish my tasks on the same day that they’re assigned, so that I don’t cause delays with development or testing.

Ayana Palisuc sitting at her desk in her home office. Courtesy of Ayana Palisuc

What advice would you give other women interested in working remotely?

Don’t be afraid to work remotely. It gives you more time to spend with your family, and there’s lot of other benefits. For example, you can take 5–10 minute breaks or naps whenever you want, to relieve stress or to refresh your mind. You can wear whatever your want, as long as it’s comfortable enough and not distracting to your work. You save money on transportation and food.

I don’t have someone checking my monitor every other minute for updates on tasks. As long as I submit the deliverables on time and don’t delay the team, it’s fantastic. I experienced constant monitoring when I worked for a local software development company and it was stressful.

Do you have any strategies for staying efficient outside of an office?

I always write down my daily to-dos. I believe it’s more efficient than adding it to an Excel file, because when I write it down, it stays on my mind. For communicating with my colleagues who work remotely all over the world, we use Slack. It has great features that gives other tools a run for their money. Our team uses Jira so we aren’t lost whenever we have tasks.

Ayana Palisuc captures her incredible meal at a restaurant in the Philippines. Courtesy of Ayana Palisuc.

What are the biggest challenges about working remotely? How have you overcome them?

Some of the biggest challenges with working remotely in my area is having unexpected power or WiFi interruptions. It can affect our communication and cause delays with time-sensitive tasks and deliverables. There are also times that I and other members of the team misunderstand each other. I’m thankful for Skype calls that help create better communication channels.

How do you spend your free time, when you’re not working remotely for Hearst?

It’s my first time working for a huge New York based company, remotely. Most of my previous freelance assignments were short term or project based. During the weekends, I work on small design projects. I love learning design stuff, specifically UX from my fellow UI/UX designers. I always make time to watch webinars related to my niche; as well as working on personal projects (like my own website). During my spare time I try to spend it with my family — that’s always been my favorite past time. We usually visit malls or eat out at restaurants in our area. We try to enjoy each other as much as we can.

Ayana Palisuc and her family. Courtesy of Ayana Palisuc.

What did you like best about working with PowerToFly to find a remote job?

From the first day that I registered with PowerToFly, I was never let down. I was always emailed potential job offers until I was hired by Hearst. Whenever I have questions, the team, especially Deveshe, are always there to assist me.

I’m thankful that PowerToFly introduced me to a great opportunity at Hearst. It’s been a year now, hopefully more years to come! PowerToFly made my dreams a reality. You helped me secure a salary that was 80% more than my previous freelance jobs. They also gave me the opportunity to work for a huge and respected company.

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