Over the past several decades, the tech industry has thrown a wrench into the way we view work in America. Years ago, employers may have looked at contract workers with some skepticism, as most people wanted full-time stability. Today that is no longer always the case. There are many skilled contract engineers who prefer to work on short term projects rather than tie themselves down into long-term commitments.
For those of you who follow sports, these specialized contractors can be thought of like trade deadline acquisitions or high-profile free agents. 2018 World Series MVP Steve Pearce has played for every team in the AL East in recent years, often joining rosters explicitly to provide reliable right-handed power in the playoffs. Similarly, Golden State Warriors offseason addition DeMarcus Cousins has accepted a temporary role on a great team, even though it is unlikely they will be able to sign him after the season.
The benefits of hiring a contract engineer might not include game winning home runs or monster dunks, but there is still a lot of value to be had.
Filling contract positions is a much quicker process than permanent placements, meaning you can have someone on-site and ready to work long before a direct hire would be under contract.
I’ve had clients undergo the entire contract engineer placement process in under a week (to great results) but with permanent positions, the process of interviewing candidates, negotiating salary and onboarding can take months.
Contract engineers can also benefit the bottom line (or at least the budget). Contract hiring often falls under a different line item on a company’s budget than direct hiring. Often, it’s possible to hire contract employees using a project-specific budget, even when a company is under a hiring freeze.
Additionally, even though contract engineers are often paid a higher hourly rate, they generally do not require full-time benefits or employment related taxes and fees.
By regularly hiring contract engineers, your company can develop a network of trusted, experienced talent. This can be beneficial when there are short-term engineering needs in the future.
Your full-time engineering staff will benefit from these contract engineers as well, as they can learn specific skills from these on-call specialists.
When the services of a contract engineer are no longer needed, their job ends. This is an expected part of their job and there will be no hurt feelings or need to worry about severance or benefit extensions.
If your firm is looking for a full-time staff member, hiring a candidate to work on a contract basis is an opportunity for an extended, low-risk trial period. This is true whether the position is for a contract to hire or a temporary need situation.
Want to learn more about the benefits of hiring contract engineers? Click here or check out the video below.
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