Role change to team lead - negotiation and things to avoid Role change to team lead - negotiation and things to avoid
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  1. #1

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    Default Role change to team lead - negotiation and things to avoid

    I've been working for my current client since last June and renewed at the end of last year up until end of June this year.

    I'm fairly happy that the role is outside IR35 - the contract was reviewed and working practices are fine. I work mostly from home, no direction or control exerted over me - generally due to my experience and seniority people come to me for advice on how we should approach things etc.

    Despite all that I'm generally not keen on staying in one place for too long as I wouldn't want to start to be seen as part and parcel of an organisation. The client has already asked me to extend until the end of the year and I've as yet not commited to anything. I've told my agent I will think about it. The project has overrun but is now expected to be delivered around August/September time and they also require some additional post-launch support. I have so far suggested I may be willing to commit until end of September.

    We are now discussing breaking up the team into smaller sub-teams. I have been approached and asked if I would be willing to lead one of these two product-focussed teams. I have tentatively said I would depending on the details.

    Whilst IR35 is one concern, I tend to look at this as a business opportunity more than anything else. I have already indicated that as this is a change to the contracted developer role, this would require at least a new contract schedule clearly defining the scope of the role. I have also mentioned that due to the extra responsibilities that we may need to negotiate a rate increase. I have looped my agent into this so that they are aware. Are there any pitfalls to be aware of here? What kind of rate increase would you be aiming for?

    The current rate is just short of my normal day rate. Given my experience, the role I've played in the project so far (I'm generally the person turned to for high level architectural and technical advice and consultancy), the fact that they've already indicated they want me to extend and have approached me regarding team lead makes me think 20% wouldn't be unreasonable. I have asked my agent to see what they think too as they obviously stand to benefit from a healthy increase. I've indicated to my agent that I would be willing to extend to the end of November if it helps get the renegotiated rate over the line.

    Anything else I should be bearing in mind?

  2. #2

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    I'd personally be asking them to give notice on the old contract and get a new one started with new set of deliverables. Just a paperwork exercise for the agent but with change in role and rate I'd rather start again.

    Also good evidence for the IR35 folder that the old contract ended when the requirement did.
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    Quote Originally Posted by northernladuk View Post
    I'd personally be asking them to give notice on the old contract and get a new one started with new set of deliverables. Just a paperwork exercise for the agent but with change in role and rate I'd rather start again.

    Also good evidence for the IR35 folder that the old contract ended when the requirement did.
    I'd certainly expect a new contract and schedule to be drawn up with a new start date (effective from when agreed) and superseding the old one.

  4. #4

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    I certainly think 20% is reasonable from what you've said.

    One caveat. If you don't have any team lead / supervisory roles on your CV, this could be a really nice boost to your CV going forward. Even if you aren't going for those kinds of roles, it supports your rate to have that on your CV.

    So you might want to consider if this role has substantive value to you going forward, and if so, don't negotiate too hard and risk negotiating it away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCyclingProgrammer View Post
    Whilst IR35 is one concern, I tend to look at this as a business opportunity more than anything else.
    Oh, and I'd strongly agree with this, and as NLUK says, you can play it as an IR35 positive if you terminate and get a new contract.

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    I do have some team lead experience in previous contract roles but like you say it’s good to add another one. My rate is about as high as I can push for pure development roles so this gives me one potential way to bump it up a bit.

    I’ve spent the last 10 years doing mostly direct freelance roles where IR35 is barely a concern but leads have dried up in the last few years as I haven’t had the time to keep promoting myself so I’m thinking of just sucking it up and using agents to get more traditional contracting roles and try and max out billing days over the next 5 years and lump as much as possible into my pension. Adding “team lead” to my profile might be useful.

    The downside to this of course being having to be even more on the ball with IR35. I like the agent on my current gig (they pay within 1 day without fail) and they know I specialise in remote working so hoping to try and keep that business relationship going as long as possible.

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    Sounds like a good role to have, then, both in regard to your CV and maintaining/building the agent relationship. In which case you might not want to negotiate too hard, either in regard to rate or end date.

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