Why consider contract roles?

Article by Horizontal Team
May 3, 2023
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Do you skip past contract roles during your job search? If you are not familiar with contracting or consulting, the concept can seem slightly daunting or even a bit intimidating. It may feel risky to go from a full-time role to a more flexible contract position, but the benefits are attracting millions. LinkedIn reports that contract job listings have jumped 26% in 2022 (during the same period, full-time roles grew by 6%).

Many of the job opportunities that we recruit for are contract or contingent labor positions within IT, digital marketing and creative, or business strategy roles. So, why become a contractor rather than a full-time employee? Of course, there are pros and cons to each type of employment, but below are some considerations in favor of contracting:

  1. Consultants get paid for every hour worked. As a salaried employee, you may find yourself putting in 45-50+ hours per week, yet only getting paid for 40. Some consultants are even eligible for time-and-a-half for hours worked over 40.
  2. Consultants are compensated competitively and typically receive higher rates than their salaried employee counterparts. As a consultant, you are paid at a premium for your unique skills and experience. As you take on consecutive projects, you can negotiate rate increases more often than you would as a full-time employee.
  3. Consultants have the opportunity to work on a number of projects with differing technologies in a variety of industries and diverse work environments. Because of this, growth and learning opportunities are virtually endless, making consultants more marketable and knowledgeable as they progress through their careers.
  4. Consulting offers flexibility you may not get from a full-time role. Many roles offer remote work, flexible hours and the ability to take time off in between projects to pursue other goals.
  5. For recent grads, those just starting out in their careers or individuals switching career paths, contract positions offer a great way to gain necessary and valuable experience while adding recognizable companies to their resumes.
  6. In today’s market, the pace of emerging technologies is unlike anything seen in previous decades. Having the ability to work with innovative companies and have access to those projects is unique. Not only that, but consulting exposes you to multiple workplace cultures and ideas.

A frequent misconception is that consultants are not eligible for benefits. Horizontal Talent Acquisition Partner Mandy Hay states, “Contract jobs offer benefits, too! This is a common misconception, and a lot of people don’t work contract because they think they won’t have health insurance.” While some organizations don’t offer benefits, Horizontal has an option where contract workers work as W2 contractors. As a W2 consultant, you are eligible for comprehensive medical benefits and a 401K option. We offer our consultants retention bonuses and referral bonuses, as well as post placement support and assistance in finding subsequent projects. In addition, we provide networking and career development opportunities, host exciting events for our consultants and ensure our consultants are well-prepared for their roles with the tools they need to succeed.

It’s important to keep in mind that contracts are not always short engagements. Many contracts we see from our clients end up being 2-3 year projects. Others may only be 3-6 months but often get extended, so you can decide if it’s a project you’d like to continue.

To be successful, it’s crucial to work with a knowledgeable, supportive and diligent recruiter from a well-connected and well-respected staffing agency. At Horizontal, our recruiters are experts in their industry domains and know how to match your skills and interests with the needs of our clients. Once you become a consultant with us, you have access to on-going support, industry-specific content and training opportunities to increase your skill set.

Interested in a contract role? Get in contact with a recruiter now.

Looking to hire contract employees? Work with us  today.

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