Have you ever longed for the fresh country air? To see the stars a little brighter at night, away from the obscuring brilliance of the city lights? Or are you a complete sucker for the grid, an unabashed city slicker who couldn’t conceive of morning commutes without fresh barista coffee and the hustle of peak-hour public transport?

As we know, information technology has cast a wide web. Outside the city, there are a growing number of businesses requiring experts across a range of IT-related skills. This year especially we’ve observed an uptick in SAP projects taking off in rural locations around Victoria, with a number of exciting implementations happening well outside the city limits of Melbourne.

While this is a fantastic trend, it does introduce a distinct set of challenges for recruiters seeking the right candidate when compared to metropolitan or CBD placements. That’s because a rural or ex-urban placement necessitates a different opportunity vs. cost calculus for contractors than a typical SAP job.

Let’s take a look then at the balance of factors a candidate must consider, before they boldly set out into the crisp, clean air of the countryside.

THE GOOD

There is much to recommend getting away from it all and taking up a role in a rural location. Here are a few:

  • Cheaper cost of living, meaning you can maximise your rate for greater take-home at day’s end.
  • Depending on your location, you’ll have ready access to amazing locations around the corner just ripe for you to explore; scenic beaches, perhaps, or historic landmarks and beautiful wineries set within stunning countryside.
  • A great environment for raising a family with wide-open spaces all around.
  • An escape from the ‘rat race’ and the grind of the daily commute that comes with the city life.
  • A more relaxed, easy-going lifestyle among supportive, friendly communities across your personal and professional life.

THE CHALLENGES

Naturally however there are also things that may give some pause, regardless of how promising the placement may look. Consider your honest reaction to the below before taking the plunge:

  • There may be limited opportunities awaiting you when the project or engagement comes to an end.
  • Depending on your location, you may find your lifestyle options are limited; particularly when it comes to after hours restaurants or social activities/entertainments.
  • You may encounter limitations with services and infrastructure
  • If you have a family, uprooting everything to pursue employment can be disruptive.

 

TAKE A BREATH AND THINK BIG PICTURE

In addition to the above, it’s also important to take into account the nature of the project itself. Does it sound like it will challenge you, or expand your skill set? Career-wise, we found the projects we were resourcing for to be really quite exciting in their use of cutting-edge technology. In fact, a rural engagement may in fact turn out to be something that will give you experiences that can make you stand out a little further on in your career.
As with any engagement however – especially if it requires a big relocation or considerable travel-time, it really pays to consider every aspect in balance. Weigh all the factors, and certainly never rush into a decision. Taking the big-picture view really is paramount. If you absolutely can’t live without the urban conveniences so many of us are accustomed to, for instance, working in the country likely won’t make you happy.

For others though, an SAP adventure in rural climes may be just the tree-change they’ve been looking for. When it comes to any such decision, of course, it really is entirely up to you to weigh your options well!

Interested in talking to us about your future in SAP? Drop us a line and say hello! Or read here for insights into how two contractors found the experience of working in Tasmania, away from the big smoke cities of the mainland.