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Subject:Re: Independent Contractor v. Employee Status From:Jim Purcell <jimpur -at- MICROSOFT -dot- COM> Date:Mon, 3 Mar 1997 16:42:35 -0800
Suzanne Hosie writes:
>Re temp agencies: My policy is to not work for them as I have more than
>enough good paying work on my own. However, I make exceptions when they are
>trustworthy AND I get the same pay through them as I would on my own. In
>that case, why not do it?
When I worked as a contractor, I always worked through agencies. Many
companies insist on it for all the reasons explored in this thread, and
I'm basically not interested in doing my own bookkeeping and marketing.
The liability thing never occurred to me, but that would have reinforced
my tendency toward agencies, too.
As to establishing rates, I always told the agency what I would work for
and let them get what they could from the client. As long as I got what
I wanted, I really didn't care how much of a markup the agency was
getting. (If you find your own work, many agencies reduce their markup
to the company and waive any non-compete arrangement for future work.
YMMV; check your work agreement.)
Even if you prefer the security of a regular job, contracting is a good
way to comparison shop for an employer. Many companies hire from their
contractor pool. This "try before you buy" approach works well for both
the company and the writer: they can see your work, and you can see what
they're like to work with. Caveat lector: be aware of the terms of any
non-compete agreement you may have to sign with an agency. Most
interpret this agreement very leniently, especially if you've worked for
them a while or the hiring company is a good customer. Even so, know
what you're signing.
jimpur -at- microsoft -dot- com
My opinions, not Microsoft's