Busting the Contractor Myths

Busting the Contractor Myths

This article was originally published on 15 June 2018

For MOT testers or vehicle technicians looking for a new role or career progression, it’s critical to have a comprehensive understanding of the employment contract options that are available, and what each one entails.

Recent research has revealed that, perhaps unsurprisingly, the most popular jobs are those that allow people to have greater flexibility. In fact, many would argue that as a society, we’re working towards a future where the vast majority of people will be working as a freelance or contract worker; selling their skills on an ad-hoc basis to those that require them.

Whilst many of us are aware of the more commonly known employment contracts, such as full-time and part-time, the lesser known ones should still be considered. Temporary roles, for example, are invaluable in enabling MOT testers and vehicle technicians to gain experience in a range of working environments, especially in the face of the evolving automotive industry, while also allowing them a wider degree of flexibility and often, higher rates of pay.

So, how do you find the contract type that’s best for you, your career goals and your lifestyle? Firstly, you need to gain a concrete understanding of the contract types that are available to you:

Permanent full-time contracts tend to be 35+ hours per week in which, as a standard, employees are offered a salary or hourly wage, sick pay and holiday entitlement. Equally, permanent part-time contracts offer a similar range of benefits, but employees work fewer hours per week which allows them to work around another job, family commitments or studying.

Fixed-term contracts last an agreed amount of time, or for the duration of a particular project; self-employed freelance technicians or testers, that are responsible for their own tax and fee rates; zero-hour contracts, where employees only work when their employer requires them to and temporary contracts, that are offered when a contract is not likely to become permanent but are offered similar rights as contracted employees.

Whilst a permanent contract will give the employee additional benefits, such as holiday pay, sick leave and a fixed working schedule, a temporary contract allows for greater independence and time to pursue other endeavours.

Here we bust some myths around contract and temporary roles…

Myth: Short-term roles have a negative effect on my career development

Busted: Whilst being seen to jump from permanent job to job could be a concern for an employer, having a range of experience from temporary work will broaden your career prospects as you’re highlighting your skill set, your adaptability and drive.

Myth: Contracting and temporary roles lead to dead-end careers with no prospects

Busted: Temporary and contracting roles can allow you to gain greater experience and learn new skills in the industry from an inside perspective without being committed to the role on a permanent basis.

Myth: The employer is in control and I’m at their beck and call

Busted: You work in partnership with your employer to negotiate an arrangement that suits you both, whether that is set working hours, days or a project. As a temporary worker, your employer will be open to negotiating timing and tasks – projects set for temporary workers are just as important as those in permanent roles, after all!

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