Contractors Taking Permanent Jobs. How can I convince agencies I want to

Contractor or Permanent Employee
Contractor or Permanent Employee

Elaine on Contractors Taking Permanent Jobs

Sometimes contractors taking permanent jobs can be a bit of a problem. Sometimes agencies and clients are not convinced that they are serious about quitting contracting. They reckon that when the market picks up they will go back contracting again. So how can contractors convince agencies that they are serious?

Here are 7 ways to help convince them which we’ll go into later:-

  1. Desire for Stability of Employment
  2. Permanent Job is Long Term Goal
  3. Other Contractor Market Downturns to Come
  4. Contracting not financially viable
  5. List Your Desired skills
  6. State Your long term goals
  7. Show the company this article

Here’s Elaine’s take on contractors  taking permanent jobs and the problems they have.

The Dilemma of Contractors Taking Permanent Jobs

Dear Dr McLaughlin,

I’ve been contracting for a few years now and because I’ve had a few spells out of work in the last 3 years, the longest being 8 months and also because the roles I’m being offered are not utilising my skills, I would like to get a permanent job now.

The trouble is, that every time I explain to an Agent my reasons for wanting permanent employment they always say “Oh yes but they all say that, but when a contract comes up you’ll just leave, a few people have done that.”

They seem to think that everyone is lying to them.

What can I do to make them believe me so that they help me to get a permanent job Dr. McLaughlin?

Dr McLaughlin’s Take on Contractors Taking Permanent Jobs

Yes contractors taking permanent jobs is a big problem Elaine. The fact is that IT Contractors will often say that they really want to go permanent when they just want something to tide them over until the contracting market picks up again.

However, here are some pieces of advice that may help you:-

1. Desire for Stability of Employment

I hope I am not sounding sexist here but point out that there was a survey recently that showed that far more women than men, as a percentage, got out of IT contracting during the last downturn and went permanent. There appears to be a greater need, or desire, for stability of employment amongst women.

2. Permanent Job is Long Term Goal

Say that your desire to turn permanent is a long term one and not caused by any short term change in the market.

3. Other Contractor Market Downturns

Say to them that even when the downturn is over, you know that there will be another one in the future and you have no desire to be around in contracting when that happens.

4. Contracting Not Financially Viable

Tell them that you don‘t consider IT Contracting to be as financially viable as you first thought, due to the times when you are ‘in between’ contracts and that this is a factor in your decision. Contractors taking permanent jobs need to stress this.

It might even be smart here to let them know how much you have earned from contracting over the last few years, told them how much you would have got as a permie, year by year, taking into account rises and promotions, and shown them that the extra money you earned in contracting (if you did so) was not worth the extra risk involved and the time out from your career.

What you are doing here is a Cost / Benefit Analysis – one of the best ways that you can convince anybody of anything. Contractors taking permanent jobs must do everything they can.

5. List Your Desired Skills

List the skills you have been using over the last couple of years and then list the skills that you would like to be using and cite the difference as being one of the main factors in wanting to go back to permanent work.

6. State Your Long Term Goals

Tell them about your long term goals. Say that you want to rise up the tree of the permanent world. Contracting is much better financially in the short term – but the differential in pay between a contractor and a permie erodes as the years go on.

I remember when I first went contracting all the permies where I worked were a bit jealous at the money I would be making – which was more than double that they got.

A number of years later I got a contract at a company in Oxford Street. On the first day I was hired I was taken by the big boss to see the big, big boss just to say hello.

Imagine my surprise to find that it was one of the permies from all those years ago, who, in fact, was slightly junior to me.

Now, she had a massive salary, perks and had been involved in the Management Buyout of the company.

So, who had taken the best long term decision?

Contractors taking permanent jobs should stress this.

7. Show Them This Article

Lastly, you could always point them to this article on contractors taking permanent jobs to show them how genuine you are in your desire to go permanent.

Good Ideas For Contractors Taking Permanent Jobs

If anyone else has any good ideas as to how Elaine could convince agencies that she really does want to turn permanent please add them to our Comments section.

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