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Guide to Contracting

Working as a contractor means that you will be contracted to work for a company for a fixed period of time and will be using your skills and experience to help a client complete a project or provide a service. You will be selling your skills and time and will usually be paid by the day or hour.  Your contract may be with the client directly or more likely through an agency who will in turn contract with the end client.

Many companies enjoy the flexibility of using contractors and freelancers as they may only need certain skill sets for a specific project or period of time.

The benefits to you of working as a contractor or freelancer include:

  • Pay – contractors are often paid more than their permanent equivalent. You may also be able to reduce the amount of tax you pay
  • Flexibility – many successful contractors are able to choose where they want to work and when they want to work
  • Variety – moving from contract to contract working on many different projects for many different companies over time results in extensive experience and an impressive CV

There are also perceived disadvantages to being a contractor and these include:

  • Employee rights – you will not have the protection and security that being a permanent employee affords
  • Risk of being out of work – there are no guarantees that there will be another contract waiting for you when your current contract ends
  • Paperwork – depending on whether you are PAYE or limited company, there may be a significant number of forms to fill in, rules to obey and accounts to keep

If you decide that becoming a contractor or freelancer is right for you, you will need to be flexible in your approach and have the ability to go from one client to another, adapting to different environments and working practices.

Help us to help you get the most out of contracting by:

  • Ensuring you provide us with your most up to date contact information
  • Contacting us regularly to update us on your status
  • Keeping your CV up to date with your most recent skills and experience
  • Letting us know as soon as you think you may need a new contract, or have been told your current contract is coming to an end
  • Telling us about your requirements in relation to your ideal role, location and salary expectations