Re: FWD: Advice on contract vs. captive

Subject: Re: FWD: Advice on contract vs. captive
From: Linda Castellani <linda -at- GRIC -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 4 Sep 1998 12:45:58 -0700

>I would like to hear from others who have had similar
>situations....writers who have gone from permanent to contract.
>What were the big "uh-ohs" that you discovered AFTER the fact?
>What were the serendipitious pluses you discovered as a
>contractor? What kinds of things should I know about working this
>way? Any advice, comments, etc. would be appreciated. Most
>specifically, how did you handle "bad assignments" (either long
>commutes or lousy companies)? Any agency "gotchas" to watch
>out for?
>
>Thanks for any comments. I'm sure there are others on the list who
>may be interested.
>
I know that your question isn't about the agency, but I do have some
concerns about it. There is a difference between working as a W-2 employee
(assuming that you are in the US) and being sent out on assignments, and
actually being an employee of the agency. There are many agencies where
one is on W-2, and where insurance, sick time, holidays, etc. are offered,
and technically you are an employee, but they don't pay you if there is no
assignment for which you are qualified. That concern is what leads me to
my first big uh-oh, the thing I was least prepared for, which is the time
between assignments. If you are indeed an employee and they pay you
whether you are working or not, then fantastic! That's quite a deal. I am
aware of an agency in Canada that supplied accounts and programmers
knowledgeable in Baan that had that deal going, but I have never heard of
it for tech writers. (If that is the case, however, I'd sure like to know
more about that agency!)

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