The Pros and Cons of Being a Contractor

During my job hunting process, I have received many offers for interview from contracting agencies such as Volt and Excell. Since I have never been working as a contractor before, I needed to do some research to see what the pros and cons of being a contractor are. Here are what I found out.

  1. Money. Contractor might earn more since most of them get paid on an hourly basis. That also means overtime pay.
  2. Job variations. Contract might change job frequently, contracts are typically short (6 months to a year).
  3. Tax Benefit. There might be a tax benefit, especially if you have your own business.


  1. Contract tied up. If an opportunity comes along, a contractor might not be able to pursuit it without risking breaking the current contract.
  2. Too expensive to be hired. Employers feel reluctant to hire a contractor for fulltime job for fear that he/she might quit soon to pursuit higher pay positions.
  3. Day off benefits. Depend on the agency, contractors might not have the benefits of sick day or holiday.
  4. From my own experience: Contractors and fulltime employees are treated differently. For example, if the manager decided that the whole group should go see a movie; it means “the whole group minus contractors”.
  5. Health benefits generally are not as good as those offered to fulltime employees.
  6. Usually, 401k are not matched
  7. Not permanent. Duh!


Mueller, Carl. Contract Work: The Pros and Cons of Being a Contractor. [Link]

Legless. IT Contractor – pros and cons of a contractor’s life [Link]

Niznik, Steven (1999). About Working as a Indenpendent Contractor [Link]

Bourque, Holly (2007). The Pros and Cons of Working as a Contractor. [Link]


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