Despite the many benefits of contracting and the great opportunity it represents, it’s not always plain sailing with contractors having to take the rough with the smooth in their day to day to life as a contractor. Look past these challenges and contracting is still very much a rewarding practise where you’ll receive huge career satisfaction. With time you can learn to handle these problems with ease and these issues will help you grow as a professional and shape your personal development for the better.
So just what are some of the most typical things you’ll have to deal with as a contractor?
A common one for contractors. As a contractor, you’ll be constantly hustling for new clients and trying to win new business to keep yourself progressing and active as a contractor. There’s competition out there and your success rate isn’t always going to be 100% when you pitch your services to contract hirers. The key to handling client rejection is seeing the positive side of it. It is the no’s that make you stronger and looking back and reflecting on each unsuccessful application, you can understand where you went wrong and look at what you can improve on and better your success with new business acquisitions.
A problem not just for contractors but many other businesses to. There’s a growing list of excuses for late payments for services delivered to clients. Companies with good cash flow and reserve funds won’t necessarily have to worry about these late payments too much, but being a contractor, a late payment is not always welcome as any other fund you may have to dip into to compensate for this late payment, could be a fund earmarked for something else.
It’s easy to avoid this type of pitfall though, it’s all about having processes in place and being professional. Ensure any invoice you send through has the terms of payment clearly marked and feel free to reiterate this again within any correspondence the invoice features in.
As you’ll be no doubt handling a multitude of clients, it’s an idea to keep a track of when you’ve submitted invoices and when payments are due. If you think it’s getting close to the payment date and a client has yet to pay, feel free to do some gentle nudging as a reminder that the date is fast approaching.
Remember to keep things professional and don’t upset clients. If in the case of a late payment, you’re within your rights to send a formal letter informing them of the late payment. This should prompt most clients into paying as most will not want to be embarrassed by this prospect.
Aside from the promotion of yourself as a contractor and the work you carry out to clients, there are a number of administrative arrangements you’ll need to take care of. Things like your accountancy needs, pension plan, mortgage plan and insurance matters, there’s a lot to handle as a contractor. Where do you begin? Who do you talk to? The key to handling this is to not get stressed about it, take advantage of networks you’re in and ask for advice to get a broad overview of the best suppliers and the type of deals available.
These admin headaches can easily be managed and can quietly co-exist alongside your other commitments as a contractor. The trick is to not be phased and approach it all with calmness.
Where’s my next contract coming from?
Contracting is a profession that requires people to be forward thinking and progressive in their approach. A contract may only last a matter of months and before you know it you’ll have finished your latest contract and will be in need of another. The question surrounding where the next contract is coming from is always of concern to many contractors. Where contracting holds potential risk and not a great deal of financial stability, contractors will want assurance of where their next contract is coming from quickly.
It’s good to keep connected within your industry in any contract you deliver as new opportunities might arise in the future from them. Social media platforms can also be helpful in finding that next contract, or online sites dedicated to contracting opportunities can be an ideal go-to platform for new contract positions.
Let iContract be your go-to solution for finding future contract opportunities. Connect with recruiters in the field of legal, tech and finance to find your next contract, and access a number of respected and trusted third party partners to help you with all your accounting needs. Pre-register as a contractor for free here.