I remember the days when I sat in the office, looked outside of the window and wished I could be somewhere else, and do something I was truly passionate about and take life in my own hands. Going from a corporate job, to contracting and then to start-up is a very interesting personal experience for me, there are ups and downs and challenges, but I can honestly say that I couldn’t be happier in my career than I ever was. Wait, it’s not a career anymore, this is my vision, my product and my baby.
Like many of us, I was always being told to excel in my study, get a good job and progress to a traditional 9-5 job. After graduating with an economics degree in UCL, I proudly joined Deutsche Bank on my way to a glorious banking career in my early twenties. I do appreciate the knowledge and network I formed throughout those days, it helped me to look at other people’s business in an analytical way and later became very handy to help put together a pitch deck, talk to investors and project our next 5 years financial forecast. However, I always felt there was something fundamentally missing. I wanted to do something that made a difference, I wanted to work under my own schedule and I wanted to have control of my own work life balance. Contracting comes to my mind. What’s better than to use the knowledge you’ve learnt in your career to advise clients, work on projects you are interested in and manage your own timetable? So, I quit my permanent job and took the big leap. Guess what, it’s not as scary as I thought. Essentially you are still in the same industry, doing similar things but this time, clients employ you because they value your expertise, and you have a more equal stance. They are no longer your employers and sometimes, you can even call the shots. I spoke to many experienced contractors when I made my decision to make the jump. They all told me they couldn’t be happier with the choice they made, and if you are good in your sector, you can always find a contract. The recent survey conducted by McKinsey concluded that 75% of contractors do so by choice.
What’s the other benefit of contracting? Ever dream about working 9 months, and taking the other 3 months off to just hit the road? Contracting made it possible for many people including my friend Kieran, who told us his personal experience in a podcast here. Do you have that business idea which you always wanted to try, but never got the time or money to put it into action? Contracting made it happen for me. I started working on iContract almost 3 years ago. I arranged to work 4 days a week and used the extra day and weekend to work on my exciting new project. The income from my contracting job also funded the initial stage of our product development. The most exciting part is, we’re developing a platform, iContract to provide a one-stop shop for contractors to find contracts, expand their network, manage applications and obtain service and advice in one place. So that it can make the transition from permanent to contracting way easier than before and to make this exciting opportunity more accessible for others.
Fast forward to today, now we have a team of 7, we launched our product in Aug 2017 with more than 3000 users and 1000 jobs posted. We are still at a very early stage and we are working on improvements and new features on the platform constantly, such as a mobile app, a rating system, search improvements, a social universe, but I know we will get there and in time, we will change the way professionals work forever! Do you want to transit your 9-5 jobs to something more flexible and work under your own schedule, or maybe to even start your own project, join us at icontract.co.uk, and together we can make this dream come true.
iContract is raising angel investments. If this sounds interesting, we would love to hear from you!