I wanted to share a few findings with you about my recent forays into the world of software contracting.
Contracting differs from employee work in a number of key ways:
- In contract work, the deliverables are typically ambitious
- Contract deadlines are often measured in weeks not months
- Contractors are generally paid more than permanent staff
- Contractors can be hired and fired with great flexibility
- The use of agile methods is compatible with contract work
The mixture of skills inside a team of contractors is often quite impressive. Used
properly, this skill base can accelerate the delivery of results. However, the trick
is identifying the skills - many developers are a little reticent about their skills!
The same is true for permanent staff. So, how can you figure out who has what skills?
I think there's no substitute for having good relationships within teams - permanent
or contract. This is a decidedly soft skill and good relationships can't be built
without some level of trust. The hard part about this in a contract setup is the
So, you have opposing forces:
Managing these forces is the key to successful contract delivery.
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