contract to permanent job position

Recently we explored what’s it like moving from a permanent position to a contract role. This month, we’re taking a look at the opposite and asked two of our long term contractors to give us some insight into the transition of contract work to a permanent position.

Senior SAP FICO Consultant
One of our long term contractors, a Senior SAP FICO Consultant, was good enough to take some time to answer 4 questions to give us some understanding of his move to a permanent role. After a long career in permanent positions, working in major projects and large programs of work and also BAU/ support environments, he moved to contracting for new challenges and variety and has recently returned to the permanent space.

What made you decided to go permanent after so many years contracting?
The decision to move from a contract to a permanent position was centred on the limited contracting opportunities in the market place and the attraction of the project.

What are the main differences you’ve experienced as a permanent employee compared to being a contractor?
The transition from a contract role to a permanent was seamless, and before the change I felt very much part of the company and was included in most functions, communications and team building exercises. The main difference has been the reduction in salary, but this could be offset or reduced by the amount of time ‘sitting on the bench’ waiting for the next contract. The experience in transitioning from a contract position would be more noticeable if I had moved from one organisation to another.

What do you personally think the benefits are of going permanent?
A permanent position may provide training and personal development funded by the employer, as well as other exposure to training curriculums you may not consider as a contractor.

What advice would you give someone who is considering leaving behind the contract life?
If someone is seeking stability then a permanent role may be more suitable, and if travelling is desirable consider a position with a consulting firm. An important aspect of employment is the experience and opportunities, and some are delivered through contracting and some via permanent employment. A role with a corporate may limit your exposure to changes in technology whereas advancements are inherent with consulting firms.

There are no guarantees of job security, for example, the project may terminate or the organisation decides to restructure and reduce headcount. I have constantly seen organisations restructure and it seems redundancies are more common than ever.

 

Sudhir Babu – SAP Techno-Functional Consultant
Sudhir is currently working at Linfox in a permanent position, but previous to this since coming to Australia, he was a seasoned contractor, playing pivotal roles in large projects. The opportunity came up at Linfox to transition to a permanent employee, a tough decision, but he took the leap!

What made you decided to go permanent after so many years contracting?
As an SAP Techno-Functional Consultant, I think it’s important to strike a balance between chasing contracts and acquiring niche skills. I have been interested in Business Intelligence for a while, so I chose to go permanent to gain insights about BI and work on SAP HANA. It also helps me to stay in one city and travel only when it’s necessary.

What are the main differences you’ve experienced as a permanent employee compared to being a contractor?
Apart from seeing a different payslip ;), work expectations and delivery timelines remain alike for contractors and permanent employees. However permanent employees are more likely to get some incubation time to skill up on new technologies. Other than that, I don’t see any other significant differences.

What do you personally think the benefits are of going permanent?
As a permanent employee, you have access to all the conferences and trainings through the company. Apart from the benefit of having all the standard annual/personal leave, it also gives you a certain amount of leeway in managing your work hours, and the ability to work from home.

You are also at peace about not having to lookout for the next gig, until you want to. If you are a Consultant, looking to transition into other roles (like management) then being a permanent, could help.

What advice would you give someone who is considering leaving behind the contract life?
Both the formats of employment have their pros and cons; so one has to evaluate what he or she wants and make a conscious call. If you are going permanent, then do so for the right reasons and be happy about it 🙂

Maybe you are thinking of making the change from contract to permanent? Maybe it’s something for the future? Whatever the case, it’s good to hear other people’s thoughts and learn from their experiences. You never know what opportunities will present themselves to you, so it’s good to be prepared!