FTC vs permanent(9 Posts)
Just looking for advice/experience/someone to tell me I'm daft. Seen job advert whichbtocks all boxes apart from the fact that it's a 12 months contract.
I've been with my current employer for 5 years, so leaving for another job would always be risky compared to staying where I am, but just wondered how stupid it would be to apply for a 12 months role in the first place. Especially as I'm the main earner. (We both work full time but I earn more, neither of us earns enough to carry us on a single income).
Don't want to waste anyone's time by applying if I wouldn't go through with it in the case of an offer, but really not sure whether it could be a positive step or career suicide.
At my work ftc means that you get all the right of permanent employees such as pension, sick pay, promotion and pay rises but they can terminate your contract at the end of the year easily. It usually applies to ongoing jobs so there is a good chance that it will automatically renew at the end of the year. However, the salary also reflects that of a permanent employee whereas a contractor will earn about 50% more.
I would always want a permanent job versus a ftc. could you apply for the job and if offered say you want a permanent role as part of the negotiation? At our work they will often compromise on this is they really want the person.
I was wondering about whether it'd be possible to negotiate - it's a bid weird that it's advertised FTC anyway, because I can't see an organisation stopping to need that kind of role after 12 months.
It's worth asking whether there's any likelihood of it going perm or if it's definitely for a set time
It may reflect the fact that they only have budget approved for 1 year, and may extend. worth applying and finding out at interview.
"At my work ftc means that you get all the right of permanent employees such as pension, sick pay, promotion and pay rises but they can terminate your contract at the end of the year easily"
It's very easy to terminate a "permanent" contract as well, just as easy as a fixed term contract. The amount of job security isn't necessarily about whether the post is described as fixed term or permanent, as there is very little job security for the first two years in either type of role.
Job security is more about the nature of the work, why fixed term is being used, and the likelihood of the contract being extended or made permanent. So it might be a funding thing, they can't guarantee it being extended because the funding comes from elsewhere, but in many cases it probably will be. Or it might be because it's for a defined project, which will definitely end. Or it might be because although it's really a permanent role in the organisation, the employer is cautious and prefers to offer fixed term contracts at first, even though it actually makes little or no difference to anything.
Although some employers may offer FTCs as a way of testing out an employee and not committing, they run the risk of limiting the applicant pool to only those applicants who are out of work/ on contracts that are coming to an end/ only want to work contracts for their own reasons. This can seriously limit the applicant pool so for skilled roles is not a great strategy. Most employers will recruit to a permanent role if they need that job on a permanent basis and can get sign off for it. I once worked somewhere where the authorisation process for permanent roles was so onerous that managers used to recruit people on contracts as it was much easier to get people in that way. After a few months they could then make a case for making the job permanent, as the person was already in and making a contribution.
The danger with FTCs is what to do when they end. If you can get antoher job fairly easily it's not too much of a problem. If what you do is fairly specialised, then are you going to wait until the end of the contract and be left high and dry if you are out of work, or start looking way before the contract ends and possibly jump ship before the contract end if something permanent comes along?
FTCs can be a good way to get experience, and can often pay more than the permanent role, but unless you are happy to risk being out of work at the end of the contract (if not, you'll be in danger of taking any old thing just to get an income) then I would stick with a permanent role.
What are the boxes that the other role ticks? Can you undertake any career development where you are to make your job more enjoyable / pay more or whatever is making the other role seem more appealing?
What sector are you in? In some, eg the charity sector, it's almost impossible to find a job that isn't on a fixed term contract these days, as everything is so dependent on funding.
I'm currently on a ftc that has been extended several times over the last four years. Each time my duties or focus have changed slightly in order to fit with the funders' requirements.
I have to say that it isn't a great way to live. Renewals often come at the last minute (last time it was the day before I was due to leave!) - but the upside is that I have had a good job which is really interesting and fun.
I think you'd need to weigh up what's important to you, but I'd hesitate to take another ftc position in future (although in my sector it may be unavoidable).
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