There are great clients and awful ones, organized staffing agencies and scattered ones. On a contract, your experience with both is created from the first communication right up until the last payment for your work arrives. There are several elements that form an IT contractor’s experience, such as the people you work with, how easily you get paid, the type of work you do and the initial onboarding process.
While 99% of your contract experience may be amazing, we occasionally hear from independent contractors that their first few days on a tech gig were rough. Receiving documentation, clearances, equipment and desk space are all tasks that need to happen quickly so you can hit the ground running and get started on your project.
In this month’s contractor quick poll, we’re curious to know how often your onboarding experiences go smoothly for you. Could our staffing agencies and/or clients do a better job at improving it? We’d love to hear your thoughts!
Unless you’re able to make the most of it, getting yourself to and from your place of work can be a massive waste of time. Not only do you have to pay for gas and parking or transit fees, but you lose precious time that IT contractors can rarely bill back to their client.
Through multiple conversations recruiters have with technology consultants, we’ve come to learn that there are varying opinions on a reasonable commute time. To learn more about that range of acceptability, we put out the question to our readers in last month’s Contractor Quick Poll. The results are in and it’s clear, most people max out their idea of a reasonable commute time at 30-60 minutes.
What do you consider to be a maximum reasonable commute time (one-way)?
The holidays are approaching and we’re preparing for another Canadian Winter complete with cold, snow, and whatever else is thrown at us. Many of us will take advantage of the season to get together with friends and family and participate in some traditional sports.
Since everyone’s busy with the upcoming holidays, we’re keeping this month’s contractor quick poll light and simple. We want to know your favourite pastime to get through Canadian Winters!
The early bird gets the worm… but the second mouse gets the cheese! The time of day a person is most productive at work differs by the individual, but we were curious to learn if there’s an overwhelming trend among IT contractors. That’s why our contractor quick poll last month asked if you’re an early bird or night owl.
Now, a month later, the results are below. There was definitely a range of responses, but it’s interesting to see that the stereotype of IT enthusiasts staying up late and slamming energy drinks did not hold true for this month’s respondents. In fact, more than half said they identify as early birds more than anything else. What part of the day are you most productive?
Unless you’re fortunate enough to work from your home-office every day, you have some sort of commute to get into your client’s place of business a few days per week. Recruiters at Eagle talk to independent contractors all the time, helping them look for the ideal tech job. We carefully evaluate what you’re looking for and work hard to find a client to fits all the criteria. Increasingly, especially in high population areas like Toronto, IT contractors list the commute time as a high priority consideration when evaluating job opportunities.
It’s clear that job seekers want to minimize their commute so they can maximize productivity and work/life balance. Interestingly, the definition of a “long commute” varies based on city and a person’s preferences. In this month’s contractor quick poll, we want to get a better grasp of what Canadian contractors generally consider to be a reasonable commute.
The life of an independent contractor is filled with ups and downs. It seems that every benefit of being a contractor comes with an extra stressor. Some IT professionals start contracting and later realize that they prefer the life of being an employee, where as others will get into the new lifestyle and never look back.
In last month’s Contractor Quick Poll, we were curious to learn how many of our readers want to return to the employee life versus how many love the contracting world. It turns out, that while few independent contractors want to get back into a permanent position as soon as possible, more than half said that if the right opportunity came along, they would consider ditching their current freelance career.
Perhaps one of the top benefits of being an independent contractor is that you get you set your own hours. Certainly, your client will request you are available and on site for some meetings but overall, IT projects can be worked on during any time of day.
While the old “early bird gets the worm” adage holds true in many circumstances, studies have proven that all individuals are different when it comes to productivity. While many people are most productive when they wake up early and get a head start on the day, it still isn’t feasible for a large portion of the population. That segment prefers their sleep in the morning and are much more productive later into the evening.
In this month’s Contractor Quick Poll, we’re asking IT contractors which sleep schedule makes them most productive. Assuming you get the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep (ha!), are you an early bird who likes to get up with the sun and go to sleep sooner, or do you consider yourself to be more of a night owl who does phenomenal work well into the night and then sleeps in the next day?
It should be a fair assumption that the more knowledge we have about threats, the more cautious we will be. For example, a hiker who is educated about dangerous animals, poisonous plants and harmful bugs is going to proceed down a nature trail much more carefully than the casual jogger who knows little about the forest. By that same thinking, an IT professional who understands security threats should be more cautious when navigating the Internet, right?
Last month’s contractor quick poll set-out to prove that theory. We asked IT contractors which password mistakes they made recently. As expected, everybody takes the odd shortcut, but surprisingly, 80% of respondents said they use the same password in multiple places and don’t change their passwords frequently. Are you shocked with these results or are they what you would expect?
There are so many great benefits to being an independent contractor in the IT space. You get to set your own hours, work on projects you love, be your own boss, and take advantage of tax incentives. But let’s face it, independent contracting is not for everyone. Some technology professionals prefer not to live in the risk of hoping they have work next year or managing the extra expenses that come with the position.
In over 20 years of working with independent contractors across Canada, we’ve worked with thousands of IT workers as they made the change from a permanent position as an employee to independent contracting. Some of them absolutely loved it while others realized it wasn’t for them. In this month’s contractor quick poll, we’re asking IT contractors how they currently feel about their career decision.
There are many components to accounting that, if done wrong, can lead to disaster for your IT contracting business. This is not only true for how you record the numbers, but also who manages them.
Depending on your strengths and time availability, it’s not uncommon for independent contractors to pass accounting work off to a relative, close friend or professional. Or, some prefer to manage it themselves to know it’s done how they want it done. What’s important is that you trust the right person to do your accounting, or you may end up in serious trouble.
In last month’s contractor quick poll, we asked our readers who manages their accounting and the results are split quite evenly between people doing it themselves or hiring a professional. Keeping in mind that everybody’s situation is different, do you think you should switch up who’s looking after your books?
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