One of the most important decisions an IT department has to make when hiring personnel is whether to hire permanent or contract workers. While there are pros and cons to both types of employees, it’s important to weigh them carefully before making your decision. Let’s take a look at the advantages and disadvantages that come with each type of employee.
The primary benefit of hiring permanent employees is that they are more likely to be invested in their jobs for the long haul. They have a personal stake in the performance of the company and will work hard to ensure its success. As follows, permanent employees are also more likely to learn the company and its culture, pick up slack in other areas and take on tasks not specified in their original roles than contract workers (who typically ‘stay in their lane’ and work toward a specific objective).
However, permanent employees can be expensive. Not only do you need to pay their salaries, you must also cover their medical insurance costs as well as any other perks and benefits associated with full-time employment. In addition, if you do not have enough work for them on a regular basis, you may find yourself paying for staff members who aren’t doing much. Finally, restructuring workflow or eliminating roles is much more complicated when dealing with permanent employees.
Contract workers offer flexibility. Because they are not permanently employed by your company, you do not need to provide them with benefits like health insurance. You are also not committed to the role or the person over the long term, which means restructuring or making changes is much simpler. This makes contract an ideal solution in times of economic/company uncertainty or for short-term projects/needs.
Contract staff can certainly save you money in the short term; however, they may not be as invested in your company’s success over the long run. Because they typically only work through the life of their contract (or until another, better job opportunity arises), they may not be motivated to perform at the highest levels or be interested in working toward the success of the company as a whole. Additionally, it can be difficult to build relationships or comraderie with contract workers who are are employed for a finite amount of time.
Ultimately, it is up to you and your IT department to decide which type of employee makes the most sense for your staffing needs and the environment at the time. Consider the pros and cons carefully before making a decision. Remember, though, no matter your hiring decision, take the time to find the right person for the job.
At Affinity, we can help you decide which option is best for your current needs and deliver the best talent (contract or permanent) to fill your open roles. Contact us with any questions or to get started in your search.