CDI Corporation

3 common myths about IT and engineering contracting

The nature of the workforce is becoming more agile. Companies are increasingly looking to contractors to deliver vital projects and streamline workflows, especially in STEM fields.

Using “gig” workers enables organizations to benefit from the expertise and skills of top talent, deliver quality products faster and avoid much of the overhead that can come with traditional employment.

Companies are not the only ones who see the advantages to contract work, however. Skilled and ambitious IT and engineering professionals can find contracting to be a flexible, rewarding career that enables them to have more control over their time.
Despite the growing popularity of contract work, misconceptions about the arrangement abound. Here are three common myths about IT and engineering contracting:

1. Contractors are disconnected from the rest of the organization

Contractors may not work in a physical office, but even many full-time employees aren’t doing that anymore. In 2016, 43 percent of U.S. employees worked remotely at least sometimes, according to a Gallup report. The truth is that there are so many advanced communication technologies available that make connecting contractors easier than ever before, from video conferencing to virtual workspaces like Slack. With these tools, contractors can enjoy as fruitful collaboration with co-workers and stakeholders as they would if they worked in-office.

2. Contractors aren’t able to work on projects that actually interest them

Some individuals may believe that working as a contractor puts you at the whim of a company’s current demands, where they get further and further away from their specialties or passions just to have steady employment. However, many contractors build dynamic careers that give them the flexibility to pick and choose the projects that interest them the most. While a comprehensive skill set is important to present oneself as a competitive candidate, developing a niche area of expertise can help contractors garner projects that align with their personal and professional goals and interests.

3. Contract workers aren’t able to develop new skills

Learning new skills is an integral part of finding satisfaction in a career. Even though contractors may have a type of project they specialize in, or take on similar tasks at different companies, that doesn’t mean they don’t have the chance to expand their abilities. Contract workers are often brought on to innovate and problem-solve tough issues or develop industry-leading products and services, giving contractors the ability to expand their skill sets. Many employers are also implementing training programs and workshops for contingent workers in addition to those for their full-time staff. Additionally, CDI University is available 24 x 7 online for interactive, self-paced learning. Contractors are also often brought on to innovate and problem-solve tough issues or develop industry-leading products and services, giving contractors the ability to expand their skill sets.

Contracting is an agile and rewarding career choice for IT and engineering professionals. Contrary to popular belief, contractors are able to work on a project-by-project basis that enables them to collaborate with in-office employees, follow their passions and hone new skills.