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With the several benefits that comes with going it alone more people are turning to contracting over full time employment. As we transition into 2017, it’s important to understand some key tips for starting out as a contractor.

In this blog post, Gorilla Accounting will run through key factors that you need to know if you are to start contracting in 2017. With our expert knowledge of the contractor industry, we’re able to use our experience to provide clarity to those who may be confused on how to start.

Plan Your Start

As the saying goes “if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail”. This statement couldn’t be more true for contractors. If you fail to devise a suitable plan of action, then you will put yourself at risk when you decide to leave your full time role.

Before making the leap, create a comprehensive list of questions which you need to strongly consider before leaving your role.

Make sure that you have every angle covered before making that life changing decision. Some example questions we would recommend you ask yourself are:

  • How will you find your first contract?
  • Have you updated and tailored your CV to find your next role?
  • Do you have any emergency savings?
  • What will you specialise in?

You should try to plan every possible route; this way you will be more prepared should certain factors arise. Once you’ve established what you need to do, you will be able to plan how you will complete certain tasks.

Maintain Positive Connections

Within the contracting industry, work is dependent on what is in demand at a certain time, for example, there is an increased demand in the market right now for Java developers.With this in mind, it’s important to maintain positive connections with anyone you work with over your time as a contractor.

A good start for any new contractors would be to reach out to previous contacts who you have worked with and inform them of your decision to start contracting. This way you can be assured that people know what it is that you are up to. Your contacts will then know that if they need a contractor, they can come to you.

In addition to keeping in touch with old connections, try to ensure that you are constantly looking to create new ones. There are several ways that you can do this, here are a few things you should consider:

  • Networking events
  • Social media (LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook)
  • Contractor forums
  • Courtesy emails

There are plenty free tools at your disposal and all of them should be considered if you want to succeed as a contractor.

If you’d like to read more about securing clients, take a look at our key tips here.

Find a Contractor Accountant

When starting out as a contractor, you’ll be looking for guidance and advice as much as you can. Once you’ve researched and planned everything you need to, you should consider your finances.

A contractor accountant will be able to provide guidance and support that you wouldn’t otherwise receive if you were planning to do your own accounts. Contractor accountants provide a service specifically for contractors and are aware of current legislations that you will need to abide to.

If you would like to find out more about the benefits of becoming a contractor, give our New Business team a call on 0330 024 0406. Alternatively you can email us on