Permanent employee or Contract employee, contract employee or permanent employee. I catch myself debating this scenario fairly often. The Dallas Java IT job market is really doing well. The JavaMUG jobs mailing list has daily job offers. I’d say that they are around 60/40 contract to perm job postings.
For the longest time I had no idea why people would want to be a contract employee. The idea of having to find a new job every, 6, 9, 12 months seemed to be a crappy problem. The idea of having ZERO benefits. ZERO paid vacation. NO retirement. NO job security. I could go on and on.
Then after talking with friends I’ve made in the Java community here I hear from some that swear by Contract status. They love the control they have. They love the idea of being able to work on new and exciting projects. They mention the fact that they make better money.
I’d love to hear from some readers out there what there thoughts on the subject are. What reasons do you have for staying Perm or Contract? Is there a magic formula to knowing when to switch to contracting? How much per hour should I be looking for as a contract employee? How are you contract workers handling insurance, retirement, etc?
I work for a small consulting firm. I have the option of being contract or perm. I’d say the company is split pretty evenly between contract and perm. I’m about to have to make some big changes in my life and understanding the differences between contract and perm status will be necessary as I work through the changes. The changes are big, but I can’t talk about them today. Some readers might even know about “the change”. I will be sure to disclose the exciting details when I can, probably in a month or so.
Anyhow, I’d love some feedback on my above mentioned questions.