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Contract rates - How much will you earn as an IT Contractor?
Posted Aug 1, 2008
As a general rule, IT Contractors will earn significantly more than permanent employees performing similar roles.
Of course, contractors have to put up with the uncertainty of finding short-term work and weathering economic downturns, so these factors inevitably result in higher pay levels.
Contract rates vary greatly according to the location of the contract, the skills and experience required to perform a given role, and other factors such as the general strength of the IT contract market and the attractiveness of the role.
Typically, you will gain an idea of the typical rates paid for roles by talking with agencies and other contractors. You will also be responsible for negotiating as high a rate as possible when you secure each contract.
Thankfully, these days, there are a number of Internet resources which give a good indicator of the general strength of the IT contracting market, as well as the demand for specific skills and job types.
- ITJobswatch - This is a handy site which provides high level data for key roles (such as Analysts, Developers) as well as specific skill sets (e.g. Oracle, UNIX, Java, .NET)
- Jobstats - This site has provided data extracted from the major job search engines for many years now. Very handy for providing an overall picture of the health of the IT contracting market. The stats as of August 2008 show that overall market rates have been on the slide since April, as a result of the economic downturn.
- E-Skills - Skills site, also provides training and salary information.
- Real Rates (US) - Janet Ruhl's excellent site for US-based contractors.
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