If you have some IT skills then you should consider freelancing. It is referred to contracting in the UK.
Freelancing gives you the flexibility to work for clients YOU choose. You can do short to medium term work for them while enjoying two or three times what full time employees are paid. Add to that the tax benefits, choosing when you take a vacation and being your own boss and you can see why it is such an attractive prospect.
Freelancing is easier than you think. If you know what you are doing you can actually do it in your spare time while holding down your full time job. So many companies need to stop gap assistance to help with special contracts or to cover unexpected illnesses or resignations.
This Find Freelance IT Work course will help you to plan and prepare to become a freelance IT consultant. Written by a former police officer who started out on a helpdesk and then moved into freelance IT work you will learn how to avoid all the common pitfalls and how to create a strategy which gives you the lifestyle you want.
Take this Find Freelance IT Work course and learn how to win at IT freelancing.</p>
You have heard of contracting, consulting or freelancing but just what is it? Why do they make so much money and drive such nice new cars?
Find out why here.
What is all the fuss about and what’s in it for you if you decide to take the leap?
This lesson will get you thinking about how to prepare the way for a career as an IT contractor. We will cover many of the elements in greater detail in other lessons.
The contracting lifestyle doesn’t suit everybody. You need a certain set of values and behaviours which are markedly different to that required of an employee.
The freelancer thinks very differently to the employee. Do you know the difference?
Freelancers must stand apart from permanent employees both in the way they look and they way they act. You do this for two reasons – so you set yourself apart from other contractors you are competing with and so you get your contracts renewed.
The 7 habits of highly successful contractors
Learn about the types of roles available to you.
Freelancing can be great fun, IF you choose what you love to do.
Contractors don’t always have a ‘typical’ day but I thought I’d share with you my usual day on the last contract I worked as a network support engineer for BT.
You need to form the correct legal entity BEFORE you start out. Here are some options.
IR35 is a piece of UK tax legislation. If you are not UK based then please ignore this presentation. If you ARE UK based them ignore IR35 at your peril!
IT is perfect for doing some work on the site. Evenings, weekends and from home. You just need to know where to look to find as much moonlighting work as you want.
Don’t quit your job until you have a few things in place first.
Here are are a few things for you to consider.
Agents are the oil which works the contracting machine. You just need to remember that they are working for their clients and NOT for you. Some can be sneaky or underhand or pull the wool over your eyes if you are not careful so follow these steps to get the best out of them.
I've used the presentation from my Break into IT package here because the content was the same.
After your resume, the interview is the most important part of winning the contract. You could be a technical whizz but if you can’t present yourself well then forget it.
If you want to contract you need A contract. This is a legally binding agreement between you and your client or agency.
Learn some contract basics here.
If you can’t negotiate then you are going to end up selling yourself short. You could lose out on $10,000 per contract or more. Negotiating is easy enough, if you know how…
Job boards are a great way to win contracts but don’t forget your network of friends, family and former colleagues.
You don’t always have to use an agent to find a contract. You can go direct to companies and win your own! You just need to bear in mind several important points in order for it not to all go wrong.
First impressions count. Make sure you get off on the right foot with our starting your contract tips and advice.
Personal finances for contractors.
I’ve seen many contractors being paid three times what they did as an employee but still managed to be overdrawn and max out their credit cards. Learn about handling your new found wealth here and how to protect yourself in case of illness or worse.
Don’t make these silly mistakes when you start on your first contract.
If you want to keep your customers then you need to know how to keep them happy while not becoming a dogsbody.Here’s how
You should have a plan for your contracting career involving how to make yourself more marketable both in technical and business skills.
Here is how you can do it.
Getting into trouble is pretty easy if you are not careful. The longer you contract the more chance you have of encountering problems. Avoid such unpleasantness by following our advice.
Don’t stay with one contract too long or you risk becoming a semi-employee or permtactor. Not only that but your value will actually decrease due to lack of variety and stale skills.
A natural progression for a contractor is to consider becoming an consultant. It isn’t a simple case of being the best at what you do though. You need more than just a high level of skill.
I worked in the police in the UK for 12 years as a patrol officer and detective. While I was in the job I helped teach the new e-mail system to other officers. I took a few IT exams and then left for a career in IT in June 2000.
I took a few more exams with vendors such as Cisco and Microsoft and got a job working for Cisco for two years. I then started an IT training company teaching Cisco and computer networking courses. I built the business until it had several offices in the UK and then sold it.
I now run a publishing business and several websites teaching IT related subjects. I've learned how to build a successful company and how to make it in the world of IT. I hope what I've learned helps you too.
Paul Browning - December 2014