When I went out on my own, it was for the reasons a lot of people do. No one telling me what to do, being able to make the best decisions and act quickly on opportunities, and generally being able to improve upon what I spotted as corporate inefficiencies. Corporations made good training grounds for some things, but they didn’t always encourage innovation, creativity or unusual thinking. In fact, often times, thinking outside the box got looked upon as weird, or at least was something that got stepped around, sort of like an intimate confession in a group setting.
I’d been writing a blog about work ever since the mortgage crash, when I was laid off from a real-estate related position (along with scores of others), and I eventually realized the best security I could find came from selling my own services, because I knew I could guarantee quality, etc. But security also comes from having multiple irons in the fire – diversifying income sources, just like you do investments.
A lot of contractors out there enjoy a lot of freedom too, and get to explore their talents, but don’t want to run their own shop. In fact, some are probably already doing too *much* paperwork, etc, with expense reports, weird tax filings, and so on. The 1099 contractors can have their hands full, if they’re doing the corporate formalities right, dotting all the i’s, etc.
Free Agent Source says, “Look, you contract professionals keep going after contracts, we’ll provide benefits (health, 401K, etc.), and a back office (even do your expense report billing, etc.), and we’ll let you run your payroll through us, for a modest and transparent cut, but you get to go out at night, or kick back, and not worry about corporate formalities or paperwork. Plus you get to bid on corp to corp contracts, because that’s what you’re toting behind you when you interview – so it opens up more doors with corps that don’t want the exposure of 1099 contracting, the hassle of staffing agencies, or the risk of traditional employment.
On the HR and Hiring Manager (or Project Team) side, you can hire with confidence, for any term. You and the contractor are negotiating the pay (contractors set their own rates or fees, etc.). And you get a way to put people to work without carrying benefits, bearing the risk, or worrying about what happens at project end. It’s clean, effective, and it works. Companies can even use the recruiter or agent of their choice to find talent, if they like. And the relationship with FAS is effectively invisible.
Traditional employees who might find themselves out in a slow job market, competing with everyone else on Monster or Career Builder, can now go after work, instead of jobs. Normally, they’ve got no inroad to the kind of positions picked up by experienced contractors. But with a corp to corp contract, and all their benefits taken care of, new kinds of work situations are open to them. It’s sort of like the inside track to the stuff that’s still working. Project teams are hiring, companies are picking up talent on a contract basis, and there’s probably no better time to get in, either as a Free Agent (what Free Agent Source calls their talent) or a Client of FAS (grabbing the cream of the crop while the market is down – like any investor – only investing in talent).