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10 RULES OF
CONTRACTING
JAY HEAL
Lead User Experience Design Consultant (CONTRACT)
a person or firm that
undertakes a contract to
provide materials or labour to
perform a service or do a job.
Contractor.
YOU DON’T TALK
ABOUT
CONTRACTING
CLUB
RULE NUMBER ONE
I’M NOT SURE CONTRACTORS
ARE ALLOWED THE FREE
COFFEE - YOU’LL HAVE TO
ASK YOUR LINE MANAGER
Head of UX (perm) - line manag...
DO CONTRACTORS
SPEND XMAS IN
MONACO?
Technical Architect (perm)
RULE 1: YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT CONTRACTING CLUB
WHEN YOU WALKED IN I THOUGHT
‘GREAT, ANOTHER LAZY ASS
CONTRACTOR’ - BUT ACTUALLY
YOU TURNED OUT ALRIGHT.
UX Designer (perm...
RULE 1: YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT CONTRACTING CLUB
CONTRACTORFREELANCER
Gets paid for a deliverable Gets paid for their time
Ca...
DO YOUR
HOMEWORK
RULE NUMBER TWO
MOTIVATION
✓Security 

✓Career progression

✓The people

✓Perks (e.g. free coffee)

✓Learning new skills at work
RULE 2: DO...
TALK TO A CONTRACTOR
REMEMBER: YOU 

ARE THE
PRODUCT
RULE NUMBER THREE
PRODUCT YOU
✓ What experiences do you have (skills, sectors, etc)

✓ What makes you stand out 

✓ How much could you expec...
UX Contracting
map
£300 - £600 

per day
More for specialist

industries
SURROUND
YOURSELF WITH
THE RIGHT PEOPLE
& TOOLS
RULE NUMBER FOUR
✓Get a good accountant - one that understands contracting

✓Find a mortgage broker - one that deals with contractors

✓Inv...
GET
NOTICED
RULE NUMBER FIVE
✓CV - keep it short but meaningful
✓LinkedIn - list out when you are available

✓Portfolio - show the processes not just t...
USING
RECRUITERS TO
YOUR BENEFIT
RULE NUMBER SIX
✓The most common pipe line to work

✓Negotiate the best day rate for you 

✓Will chase interview feedback on your behalf

...
๏You are just a number, only interested while you are an option

๏Charge employer a percentage of your day rate (£50-£100)...
DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY
MAKE A GOOD
IMPRESSION
RULE NUMBER SEVEN
STAYING
RELEVANT &
KEEP WORKING
RULE NUMBER EIGHT
SHORT-

TERMISM
๏Take the highest paying work

๏No long term strategy

๏Always recycling existing experience
RULE 8: STAYI...
RULE 8: STAYING RELEVANT & KEEP WORKING
DAY RATE ADDED VALUE
DON’T FORGET
THE TAX MAN
RULE NUMBER NINE
‣ Quarterly VAT returns - 14.5% for Flat Rate Scheme
‣ Yearly Corporation tax - 20% on profits
‣ Self Assessment / personal...
BE HAPPY
RULE NUMBER TEN
THANK YOU
JAY HEAL
CONTRACTOR
www.jayheal.co.uk
@jaymichaelheal
The 10 Rules of Contracting
The 10 Rules of Contracting
The 10 Rules of Contracting
The 10 Rules of Contracting
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The 10 Rules of Contracting

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My guide to starting and surviving within the tech contract market

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The 10 Rules of Contracting

  1. 1. 10 RULES OF CONTRACTING JAY HEAL Lead User Experience Design Consultant (CONTRACT)
  2. 2. a person or firm that undertakes a contract to provide materials or labour to perform a service or do a job. Contractor.
  3. 3. YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT CONTRACTING CLUB RULE NUMBER ONE
  4. 4. I’M NOT SURE CONTRACTORS ARE ALLOWED THE FREE COFFEE - YOU’LL HAVE TO ASK YOUR LINE MANAGER Head of UX (perm) - line manager RULE 1: YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT CONTRACTING CLUB
  5. 5. DO CONTRACTORS SPEND XMAS IN MONACO? Technical Architect (perm) RULE 1: YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT CONTRACTING CLUB
  6. 6. WHEN YOU WALKED IN I THOUGHT ‘GREAT, ANOTHER LAZY ASS CONTRACTOR’ - BUT ACTUALLY YOU TURNED OUT ALRIGHT. UX Designer (perm) RULE 1: YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT CONTRACTING CLUB
  7. 7. RULE 1: YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT CONTRACTING CLUB CONTRACTORFREELANCER Gets paid for a deliverable Gets paid for their time Can work from any location at any time to get the job done Most commonly works from client’s office Registered self employed (Sole Trader, Partner, Ltd) Registered self employed as Limited Company only Work is self-sourced (word of mouth, advertising, online communities, etc) Work usually sourced via recruiters and direct in- house contacts
  8. 8. DO YOUR HOMEWORK RULE NUMBER TWO
  9. 9. MOTIVATION ✓Security ✓Career progression ✓The people ✓Perks (e.g. free coffee) ✓Learning new skills at work RULE 2: DO YOUR HOME WORK Bought a house, got married & had 3 children Really don't want to turn out like my boss The people The coffee ain’t that great Groundhog Day
  10. 10. TALK TO A CONTRACTOR
  11. 11. REMEMBER: YOU 
 ARE THE PRODUCT RULE NUMBER THREE
  12. 12. PRODUCT YOU ✓ What experiences do you have (skills, sectors, etc) ✓ What makes you stand out ✓ How much could you expect as a day rate ✓ Where are my skills most in demand RULE 3: REMEMBER YOU ARE THE PRODUCT
  13. 13. UX Contracting map £300 - £600 
 per day More for specialist
 industries
  14. 14. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH THE RIGHT PEOPLE & TOOLS RULE NUMBER FOUR
  15. 15. ✓Get a good accountant - one that understands contracting ✓Find a mortgage broker - one that deals with contractors ✓Invest in bookkeeping software - http://fre.ag/44c6xl0m ✓Legitimate software & hardware ✓Business insurance (Indemnity) RULE 4: SURROUND YOURSELF WITH THE RIGHT PEOPLE & TOOLS A-TEAM
  16. 16. GET NOTICED RULE NUMBER FIVE
  17. 17. ✓CV - keep it short but meaningful ✓LinkedIn - list out when you are available ✓Portfolio - show the processes not just the output ✓Online presence - UX Jobs, YunoJuno, etc ✓Meet-ups RULE 5: GET NOTICED VISIBILITY
  18. 18. USING RECRUITERS TO YOUR BENEFIT RULE NUMBER SIX
  19. 19. ✓The most common pipe line to work ✓Negotiate the best day rate for you ✓Will chase interview feedback on your behalf ✓Pay invoices directly on time (weekly, fortnightly & monthly) RULE 6: USE RECRUITERS TO YOUR BENEFIT RECRUITERS
  20. 20. ๏You are just a number, only interested while you are an option ๏Charge employer a percentage of your day rate (£50-£100) ๏You will hear from them constantly ๏BECAREFUL: they will put their candidates in for the jobs your applying for & leaving RULE 6: USE RECRUITERS TO YOUR BENEFIT RECRUITERS
  21. 21. DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY
  22. 22. MAKE A GOOD IMPRESSION RULE NUMBER SEVEN
  23. 23. STAYING RELEVANT & KEEP WORKING RULE NUMBER EIGHT
  24. 24. SHORT-
 TERMISM ๏Take the highest paying work ๏No long term strategy ๏Always recycling existing experience RULE 8: STAYING RELEVANT & KEEP WORKING
  25. 25. RULE 8: STAYING RELEVANT & KEEP WORKING DAY RATE ADDED VALUE
  26. 26. DON’T FORGET THE TAX MAN RULE NUMBER NINE
  27. 27. ‣ Quarterly VAT returns - 14.5% for Flat Rate Scheme ‣ Yearly Corporation tax - 20% on profits ‣ Self Assessment / personal tax - Every April ‣ Accountant’s fees RULE 9: DON’T FORGET THE TAX MAN TAX
  28. 28. BE HAPPY RULE NUMBER TEN
  29. 29. THANK YOU JAY HEAL CONTRACTOR www.jayheal.co.uk @jaymichaelheal

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