[no subject]

From: Karen Steele <karen -at- BILBO -dot- SUITE -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 9 Jun 1994 16:09:34 -0500

Ruth-Ellen writes...

> Do you have to "sign-up" exclusively with a job shop? (In other words
> are you committed to working for a particular place for a period of time?)

No. In fact, this would be a bad move, because your options would be so
limited. Commit to a shop for the length of the contract. After that, all bets
are off unless you have become an employee of the firm (they guarantee
your salary & benefits even when there is no contract).

You want to be free to find the best situation for yourself.

> Do you think the salaries are dropping now that there are more people out
> there looking for work?

No. (At least, not here in the sunny South. ) Actually, they seem to be
coming back up. There are still a lot of job shops out there that will offer
the lowest $$. But, if you are meeting regularly with your peers (CIC PIC
members of your local STC chapter), you will know what the current rates
are & which shops are paying well & which shops aren't. (Do I sound like a
broken record?) In this business, you absolutely MUST network if you want
to be working from a position of market knowledge.

It is to your advantage to have the most current intelligence when you enter
into negotiations.

> Would you recommend starting out with a job shop before trying to go
> independant? Pros and cons to either way?

That worked best for me. I was not sure how to go about locating clients, or
what I should charge, or even what the contract should contain. I found that
working with a job shop first allowed me to learn the market & figure out the
best way to market my services. Eventually, people I've worked with
moved to new employers. They call me directly when they needed help.

Good luck!

Karen Steele
Manager, STC CIC PIC

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