Opening a New Door: Is It Time to go Permanent?

Posted on June 2016 By Chris Oughton
Contract To Perm

In a world when contract roles dominate the landscape, can taking a chance on a permanent role be a better option for your career?

Transitioning from the contract world to the permanent world (sometimes referred to as the ‘Dark Side’) can be a daunting and scary thought. ‘Hard-Core’ contractors have been going from one contract to another from anything to 5, 10, or even up to 20+ years.

So when faced with an amazing permanent opportunity, can a whole new door open for you into the world of employment? The answer is, yes!

Until recently, I would hear of very few permanent training roles. Predominantly, SAP Trainers will work on a project, either write content, facilitate or lead and anything in between. When the business is about to enter BAU, most professionals will set their sights on their SAP network and recruiters to get ‘back on the market’ in search of their next challenge.

However, what if the market is quiet?

What if there isn’t a need for Trainers at that moment in time?

What if there is a high number of trainers available and competition is fierce?

What if you are required to travel interstate for your next role and this isn’t ideal?

These are the predicaments contractors are faced with predominantly at the end of every contract. While it is possible for some to successfully find consecutive contracts to jump into straight away (finishing on the Friday and start again on a Monday), realistically, it is a contract world and this isn’t always the way!

For longer term contractors, those mentioned earlier who have been through this process for 5, 10 and 20+ years, this constant networking/job hunting/role shifting process can start to drain the contractors as the inevitable end date draws closer on each project.

When the ‘dark side’ calls

So if crossing to the ‘dark side’ of permanent roles is looking like a more promising career choice, what do you need to be mindful of?

There’s no rush. Take your time to think about your decision.

The recruitment process for permanent roles does move a lot slower than filling a contract opportunity where they are required to make swift decisions and will favour those immediately available. With this additional time to prepare, be sure to think about yourself as a permanent employee and what that means to you on a day to day basis.

Be informed about the process involved

When thinking about transitioning, also bear in mind that there will be numerous steps required to be successful in securing a permanent role. Usually a permanent role will involve multiple interview processes – very different to the telephone interview or coffee in a cafe when applying for a contract offer!

You will be required to meet numerous line managers and HR will be involved in the decision, so if you are keen to land the role, brush up on your interviewing skills!

After these interviews, the stream of contracts will come into play and these usually require signatures that can sometimes go all the way to the CEO. While the light at the end of the tunnel may be in sight, this isn’t always a speedy ending to the process. Some signatures can take weeks to complete, depending on the associated parties and the urgency of the role. While this is perfectly normal, do stay close to your recruiter as he/she will know the situation and keep you informed.

After contracts are signed, you may be asked for medical tests and references. While these are standard processes, they can add additional days, or even weeks, onto the final process.

Remember that permanent world is a whole different world.

If you’re beginning your path into the permanent world, it would be safe to assume that this road could take 4-6 weeks until you are officially offered and start your new role. But this is completely normal.

Try to remember your end goal throughout this process. This organisation is about to invest a lot of time and money into you. Joining a new ‘family’ as a permanent role in an organisation is also an investment from your side. You both want to ensure that all the time, money and energy is used towards a successful relationship that’s the right fit for both parties.

And to end, if you are looking to be in a role for 5, 10 to 15+ years, wouldn’t you want to be as sure, as physically possible, that it is the right decision? You don’t need to rush these things.