What is a Contractor?

A contractor is a person or organisation hired by a client to carry out work required for the completion of a project,  task or a fixed term role. Contractors may work with one or several clients at a time. The duration of each arrangement or contracting role will depend on the nature of the work, with projects generally requiring a longer engagement of services.

In any case, contracting work tends to operate on a monthly, daily or hourly basis. Additionally, some may work on fixed rates whereas others have variable rates along with a success fee or project bonus upon completion. Variable rates are very common with sales and marketing professionals but not so much with other professionals.

Why do Organisations Outsource to Contractors?

Organisations strategically outsource certain business functions, tasks or projects to align with the direction of the company, to control or reduce operational costs and to access specialised skills and capabilities.

Increasingly, organisations are utilising external resources and Contractors given that:

• Contractors are cost-effective due to the short term commitment;
• Contracting arrangements are flexible and tailored to the organisations immediate need;
• Contractors can complete short term tasks or projects without the need to hire full-time employees;
• Contractors possess specialised skills and capabilities that are not present in the existing full-time employees; and
• acquiring a fully skilled Contractor is easier in comparison to hiring a permanent employee.

Why are Professionals Looking for Contract Work?

With increasing contract opportunities across a range of businesses and roles on offer, more and more people are choosing to work as Contractors to progress their careers. Some of the most common benefits include:

• getting a foot in the door in a new industry or orgnaisation by gaining experience, developing skills and improving resumes for future roles;
• boosting earnings as Contractors are paid a higher rate than if they had the same role in a permanent capacity;
• improving their work life balance and enjoying greater flexibility in working hours by choosing when they work; and
• experiencing a wide range of work with more challenges and opportunities given the varied projects and/or roles providing job satisfaction and a broad portfolio of experience.

Do Contractors Work out of an Office?

Whether contractors work out of an office completely depends upon their preference and the requirements of the hiring organisation.  There are some Contractors who work on site with their clients. This is considered to be the best option if a Contractor is handling one project at a time. However, Contractors engaged with multiple projects and/or clients will generally need their own office space to carry out work in a professional manner, store confidential documents and meet with clients easily and effectively.

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