The contract market varies depending on what industry vertical within the Salesforce ecosystem you work in. But overall, candidates are receiving fewer contract offers than they were this time last year.
This is raising questions from contractors. What now? Should I switch to perm? Should I look at remote options in a different country? Should I stop working for a few months and only do certs? Should I accept a month or two as the well-deserved holiday that I meant to take last year but never did?
First thing's first, slow down.
It's true that many companies aren't going through the best time and the economy isn't great, but there are other factors contributing to the changes in the market. Remote work becoming more accepted has resulted in increased competition for salesforce contract work. Thanks to remote working, competition can come from anywhere. Especially neighbouring countries where average rates are lower.
The networking you should be doing is what can really help at times like this, so consistent networking is key. Contract work can come from anywhere, and you would be surprised who could be interested in your services. Keeping consistent in your networking will keep you top of mind in the ecosystem and when people start looking for a contractor, they can easily find you.
Keeping active in your craft is critical for getting through times of uncertainty. If you do not know where your next project is coming from, use down-time to focus on certifications or personal projects. This keeps you active in your work, means you are still learning and have something to show for it. If financially, you cannot go without work, exploring permanent for the next 1-2 years may not be a bad option. Yes, the money will not be the same, but weighing your options, especially if you are not working in a niche skill-set is always a good idea. On average, people move within 2 years in a perm role these days anyway.
Bringing back my favourite topic to round this off, SPECIALIZATION. Yes, there are many contractors taking on projects at half of their normal rate. Yet, there are also contractors making more now than they ever. Salesforce contractors are profiting from the niche they have carved for themselves. Despite global uncertainty, some companies cannot afford to have their projects stop. These projects are often extremely complex and need specialists in both industry and tech. Post-pandemic or not, good luck finding an experienced Vlocity Technical Architect on the market with nothing to do. Become an expert in industries that can survive tough economic conditions. That way, you remove the chances of you being out of work.
Freelancing has always been the best way for specialists in IT to maximize their earnings, and this is not about to change. What is changing is how we are able, and accepted, to do our work globally. This could make it hard for some in the short term, but in the long run, it will open up opportunities for everyone.
If you’re already freelancing and considering specialisation or considering the contract market, read my recent article. Learn more about our work in Salesforce or reach out to me directly, I’d be happy to talk through some options with you.