Good news is it’s not all bad – so let’s start the list with the good first.
1) Roles can be virtual
If you have good discipline, many contracting roles are virtual. You can take advantage of this in various ways from taxes to working for multiple companies at once.
2) Money is better
Believe it or not but the money is usually better than a permanent position. Since you are technically not an actual employee, but more of a vendor – most good companies will pay top dollar for a contractor. (and if they offer the less or same that you would make as a permanent employee – walk away.)
3) Less pressure, fewer metrics
A massive perk is you don’t have to justify your salary as you are there to perform a task which you were hired for – and move on. There is less pressure and fewer metrics involved.
4) The end date
Sometimes, having an expiration date is a good thing. You know exactly when you are done and it’s time to move on and with no fuss
5) No office politics
It’s simple. You are not going to be there long enough for that. There is less, usually no office politics. However, if you decide to get involved, that’s not on us.
Now comes the other side of the coin – there are also some downsides to contract recruitment
Not usually something you think of but only certain companies offer insurances. And it’s pricey unless you are working for someone that has a lot of contractors and offer this as a benefit.
7) An outsider
There is always the risk of a lack of inclusivity. Often contractors feel some sort of isolation in their role, especially if the assignment is short-term.
8) Act like an employee
Even though you are not an employee, some employers will expect you to act like one. They will treat you as such when it comes to hours, leave etc but only when it’s convenient.
9) Your numbers DO matter
The real deal is that your numbers do matter. Whether you are performing better or not than full-time employees – your placements and metrics do matter. You need to justify your value for a good referral.
10) The natural order
When you have to come to the office for work, employees will always take priority, which means you may: a computer that meets the minimum requirements to be labelled as a ‘computer’, a workspace that meets the minimum requirement of a ‘space’ and limited access to most things from applications, company information, websites etc.
11) Pay for everything you use
Even though there are some little workarounds – you are essentially paying for everything you use. Especially, if you are independent, all insurance is covered by you.
12) No reimbursements
You get reimbursed for nothing at all. Some companies will give a contractor a stipend, but since you are technically not an employee, they don’t really need to.
13) Employers don’t care about your career progression
End of the day – they don’t really care about you. You are brought on to solve a problem and provide a solution – or at least manage it. Don’t forget, you are a vendor after all?
14) No notice period
They can kick you out as fast they want to and or as fast they hired you. No matter how long you have been there and no matter how good they are – they can do it so there is always a chance that they will do it.
15) Still don’t have all the answers
No matter how much we uncover contractual recruitment – there are just some things we can not uncover and some questions that have to be left unanswered such as why is it always senior roles rather than entry-level? Why are they usually the ones targeted for layoffs?
It all comes down to the individual – contracting for some is a great benefit and the ideal lifestyle they want to lead. And it’s not meant for some.
So the more you know, the smarter you are.
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