Contractors can help increase their chances of finding the next contract by adopting a targeted approach to sourcing contracting jobs. If you are new to contracting what you will find is this is very different to looking for permanent employment.
Clients will often fill contractor roles within days, sometimes following a simple telephone interview. To even get considered for n interview your CV MUST be tailored to the exact requirements and skills of the contract being advertised.
It is worth noting that for IR35 purposes the Inland Revenue will be looking at you as a genuine limited company, however if you are concerned about this you can always look to use an umbrella company to take away any of the concerns you may have. An Umbrella Company removes the burden of IR35. By operating as an employee of an Umbrella Company, the IR35 rules do not apply to you! This means you can work as a contractor without the worry of any additional tax bills and penalties.
Here are some tips for contracting job seekers to help find that next contract:
Create a Contractor CV and market yourself on contractor job boards
Look to write a CV that includes a brief profile, list of skill sets, achievements and career history. Customise the CV to ensure it is relevant to the contract job you are applying for. If you would like help on writing your CV, please click here.
Find contractor jobs through recruitment agencies
An estimated 80% of contracts are sourced via agencies, so speak to the agencies and get on their databases.
Register on contract job sites relevant to your chosen industry.
This is a crucial way of developing leads and contacts, the more people you know, the wider your audience will become. Get signed up on LinkedIn and start contact people or getting involved in group conversations to help promote your skills and services.
If you are looking to go it alone, then you need to make sure you have a wide contact database, don’t hesitate to touch base with old contacts / clients, they may not have any work, but they may know someone who does!
It may be worth considering a personal website to show off your skills. This gives the potential client the opportunity to have a look at your skillset, career history and contact details. Make sure that the site creates a “professional look” and looks at a few simple techniques to get you noticed:
- Keep your site simple, don’t complicate it, people want to see the facts.
- SEO – look ay the keywords you want to be found for, make sure your content is relevant, and carefully choose your URL.
- Provide testimonials wherever possible from valued clients.
- Become an industry expert; if you write authoritative pieces on your website, there is a good chance that you will start to be found.
- Get involved in forums, blogging and social networking – again all start to raise your profile within the industry.