The attraction of contract working: Part One

Contract work is, these days, a growing phenomenon. More people than ever before, especially in the Information Security industry, are considering shifting to this unique style of working. And it appeals to both individuals and organisations, principally because it is a flexible, easy and productive way of working.

So just what is contract work? Although there is no fixed, universal definition, it can perhaps be best described as being an agreement between an organisation and individual to hire that said person for a finite amount of time – variable to the specifics of the contract of course. It’s that basic. It can either be long-term or short-term. In the context of our field of work, it is understandably a popular way of working.

The best way in to this kind of work is to sign up with an established agency that has a history of success in this field. The benefits are palpable. As specialists with knowledge and experience of our business, agencies have the knack, the resources and contacts to make highly-focused contract work a reality.

For example, let’s say you are a CLAS consultant with current DV Clearance. An agency can, on talking with you and going through your CV – which, by virtue, implies detailing your skills and work history – filter out irrelevant contractors and narrow down potential clients that might appeal to you. Moreover, in having developed relationships with such organisations, they will be able to best assess whether your appointment will be a productive one for both you and the contractor. The end result is to produce a harmonious working relationship that leaves everyone smiling.

The development in contract work can be seen as a natural by-product of a globalised world and how, every day, it is impacting on the ways in which human beings organise themselves with regards to work. It’s all post-industrialisation, chiefly post-World War Two.

Whereas 9-5 has long held the post as the most natural and sensible way of working, the more connected nations became with one another, in terms of trade and communications, the more it began to impact on how various organisations, companies and buildings came to work with one another. 9-5 began to feel too rigid, when, for example, your customer operated in India. India is five and a half hours ahead.

Consequently, habits and longstanding ideas, once deeply entrenched, began to transform. Hours changed, flexi-time was introduced, and people worked and finished earlier (8-4) or worked later (1-4). Others realised that some jobs were superfluous to their operations and staff rosters were streamlined. It wasn’t all fun: it meant making difficult decisions and it meant people were made redundant. To be blunt, it was collateral. Contract working and indeed flexible working – the big buzz of the moment – emerged.

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