When do you start looking for a new contract When do you start looking for a new contract
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  1. #1

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    Default When do you start looking for a new contract

    Hi all,

    I am in my first contract role of 6 months that is due to end in November. My question is, when do you start looking for a new contract role. Is it better to start looking when you officially end your current one or do you start messaging around contacts prior. In my case I don't believe it will be extended but there may be the possibility of staying on as a permie. Something ideally I do not want to do and will be on the lookout for new opportunities.

    Thanks

  2. #2

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    2 weeks before the end.

    Any sooner and I'm going to be stuck in a position where they want someone immediately and the only way to achieve it is to dump my current client which I don't like to do. Clients rarely wait more than a week or 2. Not a chance when you looking at a month before.

    Every gig I can remember was interview Tuesday start next monday so two weeks is plenty for me.

    Start looking too early and you end up in a difficult situation which you may not need to be in if a renewal pops up in the last week. Don't expect the client to give you tons of notice of renewal by the way. Most are the week before right up to telling you on the Friday. Inconvenient but pretty common.
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by northernladuk View Post
    2 weeks before the end.

    Any sooner and I'm going to be stuck in a position where they want someone immediately and the only way to achieve it is to dump my current client which I don't like to do. Clients rarely wait more than a week or 2. Not a chance when you looking at a month before.

    Every gig I can remember was interview Tuesday start next monday so two weeks is plenty for me.

    Start looking too early and you end up in a difficult situation which you may not need to be in if a renewal pops up in the last week. Don't expect the client to give you tons of notice of renewal by the way. Most are the week before right up to telling you on the Friday. Inconvenient but pretty common.
    I would generally agree with this, but these are not normal times. I'd suggest taking a look at what's available now and to see how often interesting roles come up in the market. This will allow a rough guestimate of how much time one would need to find roles when the time comes.

    Start looking now. Start to actually apply when one has a feel for the market.
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  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by wattaj View Post
    I would generally agree with this, but these are not normal times. I'd suggest taking a look at what's available now and to see how often interesting roles come up in the market. This will allow a rough guestimate of how much time one would need to find roles when the time comes.

    Start looking now. Start to actually apply when one has a feel for the market.
    Thanks and is there a particular job site contractors use? this one came up through LinkedIn. or is it a case of all job sites offer contract roles

  5. #5

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    A month before the end - and tell agents that it's a finished project with no chance of renewal. Doesn't matter that gigs want you asap - the month gets you on the market and known to the recruiters that will come back to you towards the end.

    An agent wants 'available' candidates - you can always let them down later if need be (they'd have no hesitation doing same to you).

  6. #6

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    When I enter my last month of a contract I mention it to the client (and the recruitment agency through which I got the contract) and get an idea about a potential extension.

    In case the extension seems unlikely or I don't want to take the extension, I start looking for contracts then, so let's say 3-4 weeks before end of contract.

    One thing I do is also found useful is add "available for new contracts from..." on my linkedin so agents know they can start bothering me

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by PCTNN View Post
    When I enter my last month of a contract I mention it to the client (and the recruitment agency through which I got the contract) and get an idea about a potential extension.

    In case the extension seems unlikely or I don't want to take the extension, I start looking for contracts then, so let's say 3-4 weeks before end of contract.

    One thing I do is also found useful is add "available for new contracts from..." on my linkedin so agents know they can start bothering me
    Pretty much the same for me, gets the client focused on an extension either way in T-4 weeks. T-3 weeks, nudge them again, get CV updated and on job boards/linkedIn etc

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    Quote Originally Posted by PCTNN View Post
    When I enter my last month of a contract I mention it to the client (and the recruitment agency through which I got the contract) and get an idea about a potential extension.

    In case the extension seems unlikely or I don't want to take the extension, I start looking for contracts then, so let's say 3-4 weeks before end of contract.

    One thing I do is also found useful is add "available for new contracts from..." on my linkedin so agents know they can start bothering me
    I think I did that a lot at the start but after having a few renewals promised and not delivered, right up to the last Friday of the gig, these days I get looking anyway, whether they think there's a renewal or not.

    That lost money/time when it doesn't come through - no one is responsible for that but you. And a shrug of the client's shoulders does not pay the rent.
    Last edited by PerfectStorm; 8th August 2019 at 15:39.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by northernladuk View Post
    2 weeks before the end.

    Any sooner and I'm going to be stuck in a position where they want someone immediately and the only way to achieve it is to dump my current client which I don't like to do. Clients rarely wait more than a week or 2. Not a chance when you looking at a month before.
    I used to find this when I was starting out and finding gigs via agency ads on job boards Nowadays I find gigs via my network. A couple of months before I'm due to finish, I put out the feelers, and see what's around. Usually the start date is not a huge deal.
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  10. #10

    Prof Cunning @ Oxford Uni

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    I'm never not looking for a new contract, just sometimes I put in more effort than others.

    Normally, with 4-6 weeks left on one, I will speak to a few of my usual agents and clients, then update the CV.
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