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The Truth Behind Contracting

20 February 2017

by Gemma Foley

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In an increasingly mobile, flexibility-driven marketplace, contracting is becoming the hot topic of 2017. Not considered this line of work before? Here’s our fool-proof guide to what can you expect…

What is contracting?

Contract employment is classed as any non-permanent placement within a company – from temping to freelancing. It can be as short-term as daily cover or as long-term as a 12-month position, but there is always a defined period of time attached to the role. Hourly pay is more common than a salary, and you probably won’t receive the benefits afforded to permanent staff. IT, engineering, gaming, financial services and retail businesses tend to make the most use of contractors.

What are the advantages?

1. You gain hands-on experience, fast

Since you’re hired to slot right into the job, you’ll be honing skills and adding to your repertoire straight away – great news for your CV.

2. You earn a lot in a short space of time

Contractors can demand anywhere between 50% to 100% above the standard permanent wage in their industry.

3. You aren’t tied down to one business

Some people favour flexibility above stability, so the temporary nature of this work means you’ll never be stuck in a role.

What are the disadvantages?

1. No job security

Contract opportunities can be a bit like buses: none for a while, then they all come at once. Living pay check to pay check isn’t for everyone!

2. Financial duties

Employers don’t have to deduct for taxes when paying contract staff. The onus falls on you, which can be tricky without bookkeeping experience.

3. Remarketing yourself

Since contracting is typically short-term, you won’t have the chance to settle before needing a new role. Prepare for constant CV updates and regular contact with agencies.

Whatever you want from your next career move, contact Oliver James Associates for a no-obligation chat about contracting.  

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