I guess this comes at an appropriate time since I just wrote about “Career Planning“. A coworker from my last contract who runs his own company had contacted me a few weeks ago about an opportunity with a major “world banking institution”. The big thing about about this contract was that I would work as an independent contractor. I would be my own company. So I sent my resume along and waited to be called in for an interview.
First: The Cons
Well, no benefits, I would have to register myself as a corporation and I would have to hire an accountant to handle the business, and I would have deal with a whole lot of risk because the contract is only for 4 months, and I would no longer getting biweekly paychecks.
You see, independent contractors get paid every 30-45 days, sometimes even longer if the client doesn’t have their act together. We have enough to cover us for that long, but then again, the contract could suddenly end at any time, much like it did with my last contract. Then what would I do?
So basically, I have to quit my stable job, with all its benefits, go on Stacie’s insurance and worry about what happens during and after those 4 months.
Next: The Pros
The biggest pro for this whole job change is ALMOST DOUBLE MY CURRENT INCOME! Some of you know I make a good salary now (for the D.C. area), and we’re paying off our debt at a decent clip, so just imagine if my hourly rate nearly doubled. However, it’s only for a 4 month period…for now. In reality, there’s a likelihood of winning the next phase of the contract which starts immediately after this one and continues for 2 years.
Additionally, I DO have Stacie’s benefits so I wouldn’t have to get my own medical or dental. I would control my hours (to a degree) and would be working on pretty exciting things. I could still ride the metro to work, or choose to work mainly out of our home. I can deduct my home office legitimately, as well as many other expenses.
There are more positives and negatives about the job, but I had to make a decision tonight so I wouldn’t leave my friend hanging. The client has already accepted my resume even without an interview, and they want to start next Monday. However, since we need to get cleared and have a drug screen (which we would each pay about $700 out-of-pocket), we couldn’t possibly start that quickly. So what did I decide to do?
I decided to decline the offer. I may feel bad about it in a couple months, but then again, I may be vindicated if the project collapses. Either way, it just wasn’t the right time in our lives considering some shake-ups at my wife’s job, my schooling (and that I would owe $10,000 back to my employer for tuition), and the general risk. If it was longer-term with a few more deliverables to fill out the time, then I might have taken the job. But not right now.
However, I do still have other leads through this friend for some positions actually very close to our home, as well as other leads through an old boss. I’m not unhappy with my current job, just bored, and I don’t want to close the door to other opportunities simply out of loyalty or fear. I’m not actively looking for a job, so it’s good to know that I’m still “desirable” when I’m not trying.