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Topics: Consulting
Where is the best place to start to begin independent contracting

I am interested in beginning as a independent contractor in project management . I am not sure the best way to start this in terms of marketing myself, the rate to charge, etc. I am looking for some advice from those who have navigated these waters before.
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James -

Assuming you have sufficient depth and breadth of experience in the profession, your best bet will be to work through your network of advocates to find a gig. Recruiting firms and hiring managers who don't know you are likely to want to see a track record of successful gigs before they take a chance unless you happen to have recently managed a very similar project to the one they are staffing for.

You'll also want to look at your business structure (e.g. sole proprietorship or incorporated company) - a good accountant could advise you of the pros and cons.

From a rate perspective, use a large job board (e.g. Indeed, Dice) to get a feel for the posted rates for gigs and also check with your local network of contacts as rates vary widely by region and by type of project.

Good luck!


FedBizOps for federal opportunities....

Dice has a lot of contracting opportunities in technology - PM's included. All you have to do is decide (If you are in the U.S.) W2, 1099, or C2C. W2 is the easiest but you said "Independent" so that would be 1099 or C2C. 1099 is the easiest, if you can navigate the complexity of the C2C, which can change on state and city you live in, you can make it very lucrative on the tax savings side. But you have to know if C Corp is better in your area or maybe S Corp, or perhaps LLC is better. (This is why I went 1099 because I know none of that stuff).

A headhunter approached me years ago, they managed most of my project challenges, the main con is that they will take a % of your monthly invoice.

As starting point is amazing, because they will provide you the projects...after my recommendation is "fly solo"

I concur with Kiron on this. Dice is a good platform.

Thank you everyone for your suggestions. This will give me some place to start.

Find a good contracting house. As Mayte mentions they do take a percentage of you rate but it does have some benefits. They will mostly take care of the legal stuff such as making sure you are tax compliant, invoicing etc. while you focus on work and building relationships as a contractor. But do your homework, there are some truly useless service providers out there and they are responsible for getting your time approved and invoices paid (that's what you pay them for).

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