If you’ve got a permanent job and want to start contracting, the first thing to do is… keep hold of your job.
It’s vitally important for you to assess what sort of market there is for your skills before your first move. At ContractingWISE we firmly believe that contracting can be a marvellous way of making a living and there are many more benefits than drawbacks.
Still, it’s important to make sure that a big life decision is the right one. And when you take the plunge, all the market research and preparation you’ve done will mean you get off to a flying start.
Research into finding contract work
The first step is to look at what sort of appropriate contract jobs are available. Start with the contract recruitment websites in your sector and look at the roles on offer. How long are the contracts for? What sort of experience and skillsets are they asking for? Are they in your location or do you need to be flexible?
Then call some of the contract recruitment agencies offering the jobs. Be charming – you will be building up long-term relationships with some of the recruiters as a contractor, and they will be able to give you a broader picture of the job market. Contractor recruitment agencies will know about jobs that haven’t been advertised yet, whether you would be a likely candidate and be able to answer the crucial question – how much money you’ll make.
Talk to other contractors
Recruiters will give you a perspective which is midway between the clients and contractors. For a closer view of life as working on contract, there’s no substitute for speaking to real contractors. Get in touch with anyone in your network who is a contractor or consultant – most people will be very happy to give their views about finding contract work.
Be honest with yourself
Revise your CV and pick out all the skills and experiences that you’ve established will set you apart. Also, accept that there may be some areas where you may need extra skills that most clients will want. This needn’t be a problem – as an agile contractor, you might take a slightly lower-paying temporary contract to pick up those skills and get you into an ideal position to work the market. After you’ve done some rigorous self-assessment, go back to your favourite recruitment agent and send them your newly polished CV and discuss with them what opportunities there might be.
At ContractingWISE we have met and built relationships with hundreds of contractors and we know it’s a great way to earn a living. So after you’ve done your market research, get in touch with us and we’ll help you find ways of keeping more of the money you earn and connect you with some excellent firms who will help you on the exciting journey ahead.