A guide to IT contracting
Quick one: Is your team in urgent need of specialised talent? Have you run out of time to secure a permanent hire? Are you looking for a one-off, niche skill for a single project?
If you answered “yeah”, “maybe”, or “how did you know?!” to any of these questions, you’re likely considering hiring a contractor.
A contractor is someone who works within a business on a case-by-case basis. Unlike employees, contractors can plug in and out of a team on short notice, bringing with them their niche skills and experience.
Contractors are especially useful in the tech industry, where agility and efficiency are paramount. Tech teams can’t afford to deliver mediocre products or miss a deadline, as the competition is too stiff and it may result in missing out on crucial market share.
Oh, and have we mentioned the current extreme talent shortage in the UK?
It’s a no-brainer; contractors are the ideal talent stopgap.
Here’s how it all works.
Key things to keep in mind
When is a contractor better?
You have a once-off project that needs to be completed
You’re in a hurry and can’t spend time looking for a permanent hire
You need extremely niche skills that’ll take too long to teach
When is a permanent employee better?
You’re looking for a long-term hire
You want to control how and when the person works
You’re not under time pressure
How to get the most from working with a contractor
Be clear on the scope of work
Have a communication schedule for regular check-ins
Agree on a project structure that works with your budget
Deliver your side of the deal on time
Respect boundaries and timelines
Be prepared and have any necessary resources on hand
Ready to kick things off? We can help. Reach out today.
The benefits of IT contracting
You’ve read this far, so you’re probably curious about the ways contractors make things better for your team.
Here’s a good place to start: Cost!
Sure, it might be more expensive to pay by the hour or per project…but what’s the alternative?
Working with a contractor helps you cut out that waiting time in between interviewing and hiring a permanent employee. It also enables you to skip right past any training periods or upskilling costs.
In the end, you get a super fast turnaround and no waiting for three-month notice periods. Score!
You’ll also get all the skills right away – this one’s especially important in fast-scaling teams where every move is crucial.
Working with a contractor essentially buys you time while you find a permanent solution.
The last thing you want is to rush into a hire because you’re desperate for a specific skill (we wrote a whole blog post about the true cost of a mis-hire here.)
A contractor fills that gap right away, giving you the headspace to look for the perfect long-term solution - all with zero downtime!
Contractors are also particularly handy when it comes to niche skills. If you have a specific project or task coming up that could use an obscure talent, a contractor is probably your best bet.
Yes, you can upskill someone on your team, but guess what? That takes time! When you weigh up the true cost of training, it’s more often than not simpler and cheaper to contract it out to someone who already knows what to do.
That’s exactly what we did for a recent client of ours. They needed to scale their team quickly, without the two to five-month lead time of a permanent hire.
Outsourcing wasn’t an option, as the client needed in-house ownership of the project. So we devised a plan.
Here’s what happened:
Within two weeks, we equipped their team with 17 highly-skilled and niche contractors.
They were able to hit the ground running and gave the client time to make the right permanent hires.
We’ve since helped them replace about half of the initial contractors with permanent employees.
How we help
Making use of IT contractors can be highly beneficial for your business, but only if you’re working with a partner who understands your needs and the market.
We’ve designed our offering to be as flexible and agile as you need it to be, meaning we’re able to help you scale quickly. Our payment plans are also realistic and geared toward growing businesses (learn more about that here.)
The kicker? Our extensive market reach. When we talk about fast turnaround, we don’t mean weeks or days. We mean hours. Our wide network of pre-vetted, qualified, and available contractors are just waiting to join your project.