At Flex, we’re about more than finding you your next role or assignment. We’re committed to empowering you in many other ways that will support your career, well being, and lifestyle. Our proposition is truly unique.
Our Values mean we Value you. At Flex, our internal values guide the way we do business and from what we’ve heard from both clients and candidates, they speak for themselves.
At Flex we believe in empowering Technology Professionals through unparalleled levels of service. With an incomparable understanding of the industry and dedication to our candidates we are primed to provide you the perfect role.
You will also have access to our online tool that offers wide ranges of services to recognizes your loyalty and attempts to empower you at professional level.
With a diverse and growing client base our position as recruiter of choice amongst a range of industries ensures that we can open up a world of possibilities and change your life – not just your job.
At Flex, we aim to provide a level of customer service that might surprise people beyond their best expectations. From finding your next role to managing your entire contracting experience, we are determined to make your life easier through the introduction of an exciting new digital platform that has the potential to transform your contracting user experience.
If you contract through Flex you will also have access to an exciting program that recognises your loyalty and association with Flex, helping to empower you on both a personal and professional level.
Professional contractors are professionals with substantial freedom and control over how their career develops. They determine where they work, for whom they work, and the projects on which they work. But contracting is not for everyone.
With freedom comes significant responsibility and some loss of financial security and social continuity. For example, while you might make more money per hour, you may not work continuously throughout the year. For some people this is a benefit because it enables them to fulfill personal projects; for others, the thought of being without work for several months is frightening.
Contracting enables you to divorce yourself from the politics of an organization—you’re onsite for a limited time and only to complete a specific task. On the flip side, it is difficult to develop long-term friendships with your co-workers when you are only there for a six-month contract. As well, short-term contracts make it difficult to fully understand the company’s culture.
The rest of this chapter explores what distinguishes a contractor from an employee and lists both the benefits and risks of a career in contracting.
After understanding understand the differences between working as an employee or as an independent contractor, it’s easy to see the appeal of contracting, particularly of contracting through an agency. For someone who is self-reliant, wants to work outside of company politics and limitations, and likes new and exciting challenges, a contracting career may be just the thing.
Do the following options appeal to you?
The criteria that distinguish employees from contractors can be confusing. There are many rules that govern both relationships and each relationship between client and contractor is unique, so much so, that tax agencies often review each case individually.
Tax laws governing the distinctions between employees and contractors change from time to time and are regionally determined. It is your responsibility to verify with your legal andaccounting advisors the relevant rules in the city and countrywhere you want to work.
The following information defines the distinction between someone working for a company as an employee or as a contractor and reveals some of the benefits and risks of working through an agency or not.
Of course, with the increased freedom of contracting there are risks, most of which revolve around less social and financial security than you would otherwise have as an employee.
Another obvious risk element of contracting is the increased responsibility of managing your own career direction and your own clients.
Increased control = increased responsibility
If you are confident in your abilities you can minimize the risks of contracting and focus on enhancing your career opportunities. Review the following features of working as an employee and compare them to the risks of working as a contractor. Then decide for yourself if you’re comfortable with the option of contracting.
Remember that what is perceived by some as a risk, is perceived by others as an opportunity. Many of the risks associated with working as a contractor are abated if you have what it takes to be a successful contractor.
If none of the perceived drawbacks of being a contractor deter you, there are some general traits that you may already have (or can acquire and nurture) to facilitate your success in the contracting world. None of these suggestions are imperative to your success but they will generally help.
“A lot of successful people are risk-takers. Unless you’re willing to do that, to have a go, to fail miserably, and have another go, success won’t happen.”
Flexible personal commitments coupled with a willingness to do overtime may help you meet your deadlines and accommodate unexpected project scope changes. If you’re interested in travel, contracting can enable you to travel locally, nationally, or even internationally—and get paid for it!
Be brutally honest about whether your lifestyle can support the flexibility required for contracting. If you have a young family, or are in a position where you cannot commit to overtime, contracting may not be the right career path. It’s important to have balance in your life, but it’s also important to make choices that are right for your personal work habits and that allow you to meet your personal commitments.
Financially, you must have a healthy savings account that will allow you to weather dry spells of up to two months. The IT market is volatile and contracting does not always provide a predictable, steady income so you’ll need to be ready for the ups and downs.
As a contractor, you must keep your skills up-to-date to stay in demand. You can do some research to see which skills are in demand in the open market. Once you have the core skills, you must keep them current and invest in learning about new technologies in your field.
As a contractor you cover the cost of your own training. The up side is that you control what kind of training you get and when you get it. Also, if you’re incorporated, these expenses may be deductible if they are required for your professional development. As always, check with your legal or accounting professional to find out the incorporation laws in your region.
You will also need to develop soft skills, which change less frequently and help you in all aspects of your life, such as effective communication, personal management, selfmarketing, and negotiation.
Things to Remember