Captured Technology

4 Tips To Help You Secure The Ideal Contract Job

Mar 22 2011

The traditional channels for finding contract jobs are newspaper ads, employment agencies, and industry contacts.  However, in the last few years there has been a boom in websites that offer contract work for many types of disciplines.  If you work as a contractor then you have to be on the lookout for your next contract on a perpetual basis. Here are some tips to help you keep a steady stream of contractual offers coming through the door.

Harness The Power Of Networking

Although sending your resume to companies out of the blue may help you land some great contract jobs, nothing works better than making a personal approach through friends or colleagues.  When these opportunities come along, there’s a good chance they offer better money, and they’re often jobs that you won’t see listed on job boards. As such, it’s important to make sure that you have a well maintained and nurtured network of industry and personal contacts. Keep your network well informed about your achievements and movements, and then be sure to leverage your contacts when needed.

Expand Your Skill Set

As a contract worker, your skills and experience are a crucial factor in your ability to secure the job.  It helps to see new opportunities as not only ways to earn money, but as learning experiences.  You might wish to branch out into a new area if the experience will compliment your skill set. Even if this means settling for slightly lower pay than you’re used to getting, you may come away with a valuable resume item, which can be worth more than a paycheck in the long-term.

Get To Know Your Target Market

Who are the major companies in your field of expertise?  Get to know who the big players are and develop an understanding of their current projects and resourcing needs.  This research can be conducted with the help of trade journals, online forums, and general news sources. If your research uncovers a project in your field which is facing a critical skills shortage, then this immediately provides you with a potential employment opportunity. As a contractor, you may find yourself in an ideal position to offer these companies your services during their time of need, especially if the project demands urgent input.

Read The Fine Print

Whenever signing on to do a job, be sure to read contracts carefully.  Go over all of the fine print before you sign anything.  Regardless of anything your contact at the company tells you, if it’s not in writing, it’s not valid.  When looking over the contract, make sure you fully understand the terms regarding breach of contract.  Although you’re taking the job expecting to finish it, sometimes unforeseen circumstances will come along that preclude you from ongoing involvement. So make sure you understand what will happen if you are unable to finish the job.

Keep Yourself Covered

Make sure you have your tax, insurance and social security needs met.  The tax system gets quite complicated for contract workers, so when you’re working on contract jobs you should consider hiring the help of professional taxation advisers.  Of course it also goes without saying that you should make sure that you’re doing everything by the book, or you might have some unpleasant surprises from the taxman. 

This article was written by HirePulse, the place to go for premium contractors and contractor jobs.

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 Steve Patterson
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